A "trusted US publishing source" has revealed to Edge that Gears of War 3 will be announced on April 8, exactly a year ahead of the title's planned April 8, 2011 release date.

The reveal will be accompanied by a teaser trailer, with a full-blown look at the sequel scheduled for E3 2010.

Edge understands that the game could be completed by the year end, but publisher Microsoft is keen to give the game a separate release window to Halo: Reach and Natal - hence the Easter 2011 debut.

"Microsoft's keen to avoid a clash with Halo: Reach and wants Natal to own Christmas. That's why we won't be seeing Gears Of War 3 until next year, but expect a major marketing push ahead of its release," said the Edge source.

This follows recent comments made by Epic Games vice president Mark Rein, who said at GDC last week that the developer won't release any new titles in 2010.