Rumours of impending announcements from Bandai Namco have been in the air since late November when games writer Marcus Sellars took to Twitter with claims of an apparent press event set for December 15 2017. Promising five unannounced games and a large presence from Nintendo, Sellars understandably sent Twitter into a minor frenzy. A couple of weeks on from the initial tweet, I decided to investigate the rumours for myself.
After doing some digging of my own, I’ve come to the conclusion that I agree only partially with Marcus’s assessment. He was absolutely right about one thing: there is an event being hosted by Bandai Namco on December 15 (tomorrow); five separate sources in the media from various outlets were able to confirm that. However, I did not find that there are five games waiting to be announced there, or that Nintendo will be playing a big role. In my humble opinion, these claims are more than a little questionable. It appears that while the briefing is real, wires may have been crossed at some point and false rumours circulating the Twittersphere allowed for misinformation to be spread.
According to sources in contact with Bandai Namco regarding the event, they initially heard that around five different games would be shown off at the invite-only press meeting taking place in Paris tomorrow. At the time, Bandai Namco staff privately teased that a ‘big,' then unannounced project would be shown off there. From there, it seems the rumour mill kicked in and the details became warped with guesswork and speculation as they traveled from person to person. Before long, rumours of hot reveals like a Dark Souls collection, Xenosaga HD and a Nintendo Switch version of Soul Calibur VI were in the air.
It’s impossible to account for all of these claims, and although some of these aforementioned dream projects could still exist, the list of titles that Bandai Namco plans to share with the assembled media has already been made known to them. Sources in the press say that the publisher apparently has one more unannounced game they plan to unveil in Paris, but it isn’t the “big” project they had been teasing earlier - that was Soul Calibur VI, which they revealed at The Game Awards. Furthermore, the information available to invited guests has never mentioned a Switch version or an appearance from Nintendo. Unless those are surprises that they’re inexplicably keeping under tight wraps, those particular rumours appear dubious.
With the exception of demoing Soul Calibur VI on the platforms it has already been announced for - PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC - Bandai Namco’s scheduled line-up for the 15th mostly includes licensed properties like Seven Deadly Sins and Digimon. Dropping a big Nintendo announcement in the middle of an otherwise modest event might be a bit unusual. This is a day behind closed doors with the games media where non-disclosure agreements will be adhered to. Previews and impressions write-ups will no doubt follow in its aftermath, but don’t expect to see it live streamed for fans on the day.
As always, I recommend taking any rumours like this with a pinch of salt. Whether or not Marcus’s original tweet was accurate, you likely won’t have to wait long before finding out what Bandai Namco has planned.