Shakespeare coined the term “undiscovered country” to refer to death. “Star Trek,” inexplicably, changed it to refer to peace. So whatever. Now it refers to the future, particularly the future of gaming in the coming year. Let’s gaze into that crystal ball and see what 2012 will bring to our favorite past-time: gaming.

PlayStation Vita

Release date: Feb. 22

While the PSP wasn’t a runaway success like the DS, it still moved a ton of units. The forthcoming PSV will up the ante by offering experiences that almost rival those found on a PS3 or Xbox 360. The new portable also boasts front and back touchscreens, 3G functionality, dual analog sticks and one of the prettiest displays in all the tech-o-sphere. Oh yeah. It also launches with a new “Uncharted” game. May as well get that wallet out now.

iPad 3

Release date: February or summer — or who knows

The current rumor is that the third iPad will be released to commemorate Steve Jobs’ birthday on Feb. 24. Rumors also indicate the tablet will be 10 times the speed, feature eight cameras and communicate with alien life. Yeah. People write a lot of crazy stuff about Apple products. It’s safe to assume, though, it will have a better screen, faster processing and Siri implementation. Expect to be hearing a lot of “Siri. Run ‘Angry Birds.’”

Nintendo Wii U

Release date: After June

The Wii U made a brief appearance at last year’s E3 conference, but the system is still shrouded in Nintendo-branded mystery. All we know is the general “hook” of the system, which seems to marry the motion controls of the original Wii with an iPad. Soon you’ll be able to stream games right to the tablet controller if your roommates hate you for clogging up the living room.

 

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