Fall is coming. It’s got Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 and Assassin’s Creed 3 and all sorts of reborn ye olde franchises like Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon and XCOM: Enemy Unknown. None of these are the sequels that have the potential to blow minds with a fall ’12 release. That distinct pleasure belongs to Grand Theft Auto 5, a game that may just peak its head above ground in the imminent future at a particular European video game conference.
E3 2012 came, went, and then all the big announcements happened. Sony did not announce it was acquiring cloud-streaming video game company Gaikai at the conference—It waited until the end of June to pull that particular rabbit out of its hat. Nintendo didn’t announce a much asked for new version of its Nintendo 3DS handheld—It waited a couple of weeks to reveal that the Nintendo 3DS XL would be out in August. Sure, Microsoft was all too happy to talk about the Xbox-focused app SmartGlass coming to nearly every mobile device under the sun, but it didn’t go whole hog and announce the Microsoft Surface tablet until 11 days after the show closed.
E3 didn’t bring in the noise or the funk. Even hugely hyped games bowed out. With so many AAA titles pushed into 2013, many predicted that Take-Two Interactive would break recent Rockstar tradition and roll into E3 with a playable Grand Theft Auto V. Now it looks like the world’s most famous open world game may have just been waiting to debut a little closer to Rockstar North’s home in Scotland.
The Gamescom conference runs from August 15th to the 19th in Cologne, Germany. A trailer for the conference showed up on the official Gamescom website on Thursday, teasing what games would be at the show. Lo and behold, Grand Theft Auto V pops up in the middle of the trailer suggesting that Rockstar might bring its new game to the show.
The appearance isn’t without precedence. Rockstar has attended in the past, and it debuted Grand Theft Auto IV expansions and the game’s PC edition at the conference’s past incarnation in Leipzig back in 2008.
Evidence that Rockstar is planning a surprise 2012 release for Grand Theft Auto V has piled up in the past 6 months. A Rockstar employee’s online resume at LinkedIn pegged the game for an October release. A number of industry analysts also believe that Take-Two Interactive’s financial projections for fiscal 2013, which ends in March of next year, also indicate an October release for the game.
Gamescom might be a whole lot more exciting than E3 was.