Gamescom 2017 has, so far, been mostly devoid of pre-show rumours or announcements - aside from the news that Angela Merkel's going to pop by - and that's largely down to some of the big platform holders like PlayStation shying away from the show for another year in succession, and the ones who will be there, like Xbox, keeping it fairly low-key compared to E3.
Instead, third-parties will fill the void with their own showcases, where we will hopefully see one or two surprises - maybe something Blizzard has up its sleeve, seeing as they announced the WoW expansion, Legion, there two years ago?
Either way we'll have live blogs for the Xbox and EA streams, which will be linked from here when they go live. Once each event is over, we'll then be linking to the biggest stories from each - handy for those who can't be around in the evening, where the bulk of the streams are taking place.
Update: If you're wondering where the gamescom 2018 schedule guide is, strangely this year publishers aren't doing any live streams for the show. The closest we have is a special episode of Inside Xbox on Tuesday, 21st August, which is set to show off "new Xbox bundles and accessories" and "features on upcoming titles". It goes live at the following times, if you want to catch it:
- UK: 3:30pm (BST)
- Europe: 4:30pm (CEST)
- East Coast US: 10:30am (EDT)
- West Coast US: 7:30am (PDT)
What are Xbox, Nintendo, and PlayStation showing at gamescom 2017?
Microsoft will be having a show again this year, after taking a break for gamescom 2016, and we can expect them to have the likes of Sea of Thieves and Forza Motorsport 7 on the show floor. There may be something new-ish there at least, but just don't hold your breath for anything properly new to play on the finally-unveiled Xbox One X.
Sony isn't hosting a press conference either, once again in favour of more detailed showcases later in the year, specifically at Tokyo Games Show and their dedicated PlayStation Experience convention. They do have a booth, and will be showing a slew of games that we already saw at E3, but as with Microsoft, again don't expect anything new by way of announcements.
Nintendo, meanwhile, is featuring not one but two Nintendo livestreams at gamescom this year - one for Super Mario Odyssey, and the other for Metroid: Samus Returns. A swathe of other Nintendo titles are playable on the showfloor, too.
Xbox gamescom 2017 conference - starting Sunday August 20th
- UK: 8pm (BST)
- Europe: 9pm (CEST)
- East Coast US: 3pm (EDT)
- West Coast US: 12 noon (PDT)
Xbox gamescom 2017 conference predictions and expectations
Microsoft will most likely be showing more of the same from E3. We don't expect much, if anything, in the way of major new announcements from their stream, so expect some minor updates and details - maybe some new trailers for already-announced games like Forza Motorsport 7, the recently-delayed Crackdown 3, and Sea of Theives.
There is, also, a second live stream from Xbox, at the same times as above but on Monday 21st, specifically for Age of Empires' 20th anniversary, where they'll be "sharing some exciting news that [Age of Empires] fans will not want to miss." Another expansion or remaster, maybe?
Catch up with Xbox's announcements and news from gamescom 2017:
- Xbox gamescom 2017 conference live report
- Here's all the games enhanced on Xbox One X
- Budget, Xbox One X-enhanced ReCore Definitive Edition leaked
- Jurassic World Evolution theme park sim announced by Planet Coaster dev Frontier
- Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition comes in a cool original Xbox-style box
- Rare confirms Sea of Thieves cross-platform play for PC and Xbox One
- Behold the Minecraft grass block-themed Xbox One S
- There's an easy way to transfer your settings from Xbox One to Xbox One X
- Jelly Deals: Where to pre-order the Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition
- Microsoft's final sales pitch for Xbox One X falls flat
- Age of Empires 4 revealed with Relic at the helm
EA gamescom 2017 conference - Monday August 21st
- UK: 5:30 (BST)
- Europe: 6:30pm (CEST)
- East Coast US: 12:30pm (EDT)
- West Coast US: 9:30am (PDT)
EA gamescom 2017 conference predictions and expectations
Where some publishers are continuing to shy away from gamescom showings of any kind of scale, EA still looks to have a healthy offering. Expect more on FIFA 18 - including another up-close look at Ultimate Team, The Journey mode sequel, new features, and hopefully some more on its Switch edition - and other sports games NHL 18 and Madden NFL 18.
Then there's Star Wars Battlefront 2, which debuted very well at E3 2017 and will show off space battles for the first time in Germany, and we can expect more on additional Battlefield 1 content and Need for Speed Payback, too.
Catch up with EA's announcements and news from gamescom 2017:
Blizzard gamescom 2017 livestream - Monday 21st and Wednesday 23rd August
- UK: 5pm (BST)
- Europe: 6pm (CEST)
- East Coast US: 12 noon (EDT)
- West Coast US: 9am (PDT)
Blizzard gamescom 2017 stream predictions and expectations
Continuing their strong gamescom tradition, Blizzard will again have plenty to show at gamescom 2017. Expect to hear from all of their games, which means World of Warcraft, Hearthstone, Overwatch, Diablo 3, Starcraft 2 and Heroes of the Storm will be making an appearance.
There are actually two streams for Blizzard, technically, but the earlier one on Monday 21st (at the same time as the other, listed above) is just a 'special preview video' of everything they're set to show properly in the main stream on Wednesday 23rd, so you can expect that to be more of a sizzle-reel trailer than anything major in and of itself.
Set to be revealed are a new Overwatch animated short and brand new Overwatch map, a new Hearthstone Fireside Gathering feature that lets you form a Raid against the Lich King, a run through a dungeon from the new World of Warcraft patch 7.3, and then some hands-on time with a new Heroes of the Storm Hero, a new Starcraft 2 co-op commander and Starcraft Remastered, and finally some hands-on time with the Diablo 3 Rise of the Necromancer pack, as well.
Nintendo gamescom 2017 livestreams - Wednesday 23rd and Thursday 24th August
Super Mario Odyssey gets the first Nintendo stream, on Wednesday 23rd at the below times:
- UK: 2pm (BST)
- Europe: 3pm (CEST)
- East Coast US: 9am (EDT)
- West Coast US: 6am (PDT)
Metroid: Samus Returns gets the second, on Thursday 24th:
- UK: 11am (BST)
- Europe: 12 noon (CEST)
- East Coast US: 6am (EDT)
- West Coast US: 3am (PDT)
Nintendo gamescom 2017 conference predictions and expectations
Aside from showing off more footage of Super Mario Odyssey and Metroid: Samus Returns, Nintendo will also have presentations on Fire Emblem Warriors and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 at the show.
As well as those, Pokkén Tournament DX, Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, ARMS, Splatoon 2, Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga, and Monster Hunter Stories will be playable on the show floor.
No mention of Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, however, which leaves things surprisingly late for a mainline Pokémon entry. Could news for those come in a dedicated reveal down the line? Or is there a surprise in store at the show?
Catch up with Nintendo's announcements and news from gamescom 2017:
Other announcements and predictions at gamescom 2017:
While gamescom doesn't really work in the same way as E3, at least in terms of big, bombastic press conferences, there are still plenty of big publishers having a presence in Cologne - be that with announcements and streams at the show, or just playable demos available to the public for the first time since E3 itself.
Activision, Call of Duty and Destiny
Away from the Blizzard-centric news, Destiny 2 will be playable at the show, but only in the same form that we've already seen in the open beta. Don't expect any new announcements!
Likewise, Call of Duty: WW2 will also be there, giving players who are present in Germany the chance to get hands on with the Private Multiplayer beta a few days early, before it goes global on 25th August - there's actually also a livestream relating to the beta, with potentially a few more multiplayer details, on 22nd August at 6pm BST, or 10am PT.
Bethesda will have Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus, at gamescom, and we can expect to see more of The Evil Within 2 and the standalone Death of the Outsider Dishonored 2 DLC, as well. Wolfenstein 2 will likely be more of what we've already seen from that delightful milkshake-Nazi level, but Death of the Outsider and The Evil Within will be all-new.
Ubisoft's showing will mostly be a case of more hands-on time with their E3 slate. Assassin's Creed Oranges will be there, as will The Crew 2, Far Cry 5, Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, South Park: The Fractured But Whole, their Steep Olympics expansion, and a few other bits and bobs.
- This is when you can play The Crew 2
- The next Anno goes back to the past
- Blizzard airs long-awaited new Overwatch animated short for... Mei
What else? Well, Warner Brothers will likely have Middle Earth: Shadow of War playable, we can probably expect more on games like PES 18, Star Citizen, Ni No Kuni 2, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, new stuff from Telltale Games, Monster Hunter: World, PC game expansions for the likes of Stellaris and Cities: Skylines, Lego Marvel Superheroes and loads more.
- Shenmue 3 reveals new in-engine footage in Gamescom trailer
- Our first glimpse at the Dragon Ball Fighterz story mode
- THQ Nordic making open-world post-apocalyptic kung-fu action-RPG called Biomutant
- Here's a teaser for Gwent's single-player story campaign, Thronebreaker
- Final Fantasy 15 being remade as a chibi adventure on mobiles
- Cities Skylines announces eco-friendly Green Cities expansion
- Tyranny expansion Bastard's Wound gets a release date
- Telltale's Guardians of the Galaxies looks likely for Switch
We'll continue to update this page with news, write-ups, announcements and videos as they come, along with providing links to our own live blogs here on the site,so stay tuned for plenty more to come.
Additional reporting by Matthew Reynolds.