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The Top 7... games we want announced at E3

Master Chief's last adventure left us with a ton of questions, and after months of speculation, the biggest one has remained just as mysteriously and frustratingly unanswered as when we finished the game. What's next for Halo?

In truth, the guesswork began years ago. Back in the summer of 2006, way before Halo 3 hit shelves, rumors spread that Bungie was secretly working on another trilogy. Some thought it was a Forerunner prequel featuring "huge persistent worlds." Others wondered if it might be a modern remake of the studio's Marathon series, which has symbolic ties to Halo and could serve as that franchise's prequel or sequel.

The rumors were quickly quashed, but as this is Halo we're talking about, new ones immediately grew up in their place. As recently as April, the internet was tripping over itself to predict that Bungie "was too!" working on a prequel, in "third-person," no matter what the developers had claimed earlier. And don't forget Peter Jackson's Halo: Chronicles, an episodic, downloadable and possibly interactive set of games... or are they movies?

No one really knows for sure, but the ambiguity is confusing and exciting as hell. Plus, here's a fact we do know - the Halo universe has made roughly a zillion bajillion dollars so far. We may not have figured out what's next yet, but rest assured, something is DEFINITELY next. Let's just hope they reveal what that "something" is at this year's E3 to do battle with Sony's biggest hitter...

If there's one thing we've learned from dealing with Sony Computer Entertainment over the years, it's that the company loves the drama of a good surprise reveal. Its biggest projects - Home and LittleBigPlanet are frequently kept under wraps for months, only to suddenly debut in finished-looking form at one of SCE's big press conferences. That's why we fully expect the company to try and blow our minds on Tuesday morning with a fully realized PS3 Kratos running around and caving in monster skulls.

Really, this one's a no-brainer. God of War III was all but officially announced during the ending of God of War II in early 2007, so we're pretty sure Sony's Santa Monica studio was already at work on it before GoW II even left their hands. Besides, all you'd really need for a PS3 God of War - or at least an E3 demo of same - is the same sublimely ultraviolent gameplay with absurdly beefed-up graphics that blow away Gears of War. Easy, right?

Above: OK, now just make the actual gameplay look like this, and you're golden

Of course, we'd expect more from God of War III. With a powerful new platform to exploit, it's poised to reinvent the hack-and-slash genre again, if it really wants to. Just imagine what the PS3 could do for Kratos' fantastically gruesome rampages, or what current-gen physics could do for his iconic chain-blades, and you'll have some idea of the potential here. (OK, now stop imagining the blades getting tangled up or accidentally whipping back and stabbing Kratos in the chest. No! Bad! Stop!)

Yes, Resistance 2, LittleBigPlanet, Home and Infamous will all factor big into Tuesday's press conference, but they're not surprises. We've seen them - or at least something of them - already. The only thing we know about God of War III, however, is the title - and we'll be shocked if we don't know a lot more by Tuesday afternoon.