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Privacy Clouding E3

BUZZWORTHY GAMES:
LucasArts

Shutdown of Sony's PlayStation Network will be among the topics at the annual gaming confab.

For all the talk of cloud computing, the real cloud that hangs over E3, the annual confab that runs June 7 to 9 in Los Angeles, is the computer hack that forced the shutdown of Sony's PlayStation Network in April. As 45,000 attendees ogle new toys, the hurting gaming industry hopes Sony will rebound after a hacker compromised an estimated 100 million users of its PlayStation Network, Qriocity and Sony Online Entertainment services. "It will definitely be an element of the conversation," says Shawn DuBravac, chief economist for the Consumer Electronics Association. But DuBravac and others expect talk to turn to new products, 3D, mobile gaming and tablets. "That is where the growth is," he says. Nintendo will debut a playable model of its new Wii console, and Sony will demonstrate its next-generation PlayStation Portable, the NGP. Sony has included PlayStation Network access in the device, even as execs pray that the network runs smoothly.       

FIVE BUZZWORTHY NEW GAMES

Star Wars: The Old Republic (Electronic Arts)
The massively multiplayer online game is set in an age thousands of years before the rise of Darth Vader and allows gamers to step into characters that follow the light or the dark side of the Force.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (Activision)
The best-selling first-person shooter returns with more interactive features (reportedly for a monthly charge) and a plot featuring special forces looking to retake Wall Street from Russian attackers.

BioShock Infinite (Take-Two)
The franchise, which has sold 8 million units, returns with players having to free a girl from 1912 Columbia, an immense city in the sky.

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Nintendo)
The latest installment of the action-adventure game sees the protagonist travel between a world in the clouds and land to fight evil forces.

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception (Sony)
The game combines historical and adventure stories, featuring the wisecracking Drake.

Activision
2K
Nintendo
PlayStation