E3 is upon us, a spectacle of epic proportions we all await with nervous glee. It's often the turning point in the year, where the big publishers unveil the rest of their hand and tease us with all they have to offer in the coming years. Admittedly, it's a bit of a farce, all pomp and hype; but we love it regardless.
And so, in honor of our most cherished event, we at Dealspwn thought we'd cast our gaze over the biggest and best E3 announcements of the last decade or so. Sit back and enjoy!
10. Gabe Newell's Surprise Sony Appearance
Before their big old media hug at last year's E3, Valve honcho Gabe Newell had been vehemently outspoken in his dislike for Sony's next-gen behemoth. He ridiculed the tech, the online service and outsourced development of the Orange Box's contents to a separate developer. Then he waddled on-stage in June of last year and announced an unprecedented partnership between Valve and Sony. It was a wonderful surprise, frankly.
9. The 3DS
The DS' reveal was a great moment, too, but Nintendo shocked the gaming world when it revealed its successor. Ostensibly resembling a DSi with a fancy paint job, the real surprise was the screen and tech the 3DS was packing. A nifty display allowed for three-dimensional visuals without glasses, and the processor and GPU was far ahead of its predecessor, putting it at a level-pegging with last gen consoles. A great moment; a pity about the launch line-up then.
8. Halo 2 Unveiling
Come on, Halo fans; you remember this one. Bungie took to the E3 stage to show off the follow-up to the Xbox's biggest exclusive. It's savior, in fact. Halo: Combat Evolved single-handedly rescued Microsoft's debut console from the clutches of oblivion - I love being dramatic - and so expectations were duly high for its successor. And the on-stage demo didn't disappoint, showcasing a war-torn, futuristic Earth overrun with Covenant forces. Pity it didn't make it into the game.
7. Killzone 2 Trailer
Cast your mind back to E3 2005, when Sony first unveiled the Playstation 3 to the assembled masses. It was a joyous occasion, promises of redefining game thrown here, there and everywhere. Then along came Killzone 2, in all its in-game glory - or so we thought. Turns out it was pre-rendered, but the moment itself was so indelible, it's still the matter of furious debate.
6. The Wii
"The what?' we all gasped when Nintendo unveiled their next-gen console. Ignoring the obvious - and crude - jokes associated with Nintendo's console's name, the Wii was a big surprise at E3, signalling a shift in focus from the Japanese company, which for so long had focused on delivering content to its core crowd, now apparently shifting gears for the casual audience. And it was a success, if resulting in a loss of respect in the Nintendo brand as a whole.
5. Project Natal
Microsoft's unveiling of Project Natal threw a spanner in the works at E3 two years ago. Playing catch up to the Wii in sales and beginning to lag behind the PS3 in the blockbuster department, Microsoft surprised us all when they revealed their plans to redefine how we interact with games. It was captivating stuff, if a little diluted now by the reality of Kinect.
4. Final Fantasy XIII Goes Multiplatform
Sorry, Sony fanboys. It had to be done. When Microsoft revealed that Final Fantasy XIII, the long-awaited PS3 exclusive, was sharing its joy not just on Sony's platform, but on the 360, too, forums went mad with fanboy chatter. It was fascinating to witness the Sony fanboys turn on a game they'd once so cherished, and the Microsoft lot flock to a title they'd long dismissed. In the end, the game wasn't very good, anyway!
3. Peter Moore's Grand Theft Auto 4 Tattoo
Another exclusivity steal from Microsoft here, when former head honcho, Peter Moore, revealed they'd secured exclusive rights to post-release DLC on Grand Theft Auto IV. It was a great moment, underlined by Moore rolling up his sleeve to reveal a - fake - tattoo of the GTA IV logo stamped on his forearm. Dedicated, no?
2. Twilight Princess Reaction
Why's this so high on the list, above all the other jaw-dropping moments. Because, above all, this one was special. Wind Waker had left a distinctly marmite-flavored taste in Zelda fans mouths, and Nintendo had it all to prove with the follow-up, Twilight Princess. And they didn't disappoint! With an epic trailer, heart-pounding music and the arrival of Miyamoto himself - wielding the Master Sword and Hylian Shield, no less! - it was a moment destined to live long in the history of E3.
1. PS2 Reveal
You'll have to cast your mind back for this one, when Sony revealed the Playstation's successor to the crowds at E3. It might look and feel dated now, but back then, the PS2 felt like a revolution. Sleek design, powerful tech and a roster of mouthwatering titles promised much. And Sony delivered. That said, the promises of the so-called Emotion Engine were a little farfetched.
What do you think, Dealspwners? Happy with the choices on the list, or did we miss a few key moments? And what of this week's announcements? Do any deserve an honorable mention?