With Christmas just a little over a week away, many of us are scrambling to finish off our Holiday shopping before the big day. We’re sure we aren’t the only ones in this situation. Based on the fact that you are reading this article, we can safely assume that you probably have a gamer or two on your list this year, as many of us do. Have no fear, as the Gaming Nexus staff is here to help you wrap up your shopping with plenty of time to get back online and play some more Modern Warfare 3 or Skyrim.
Take a look at some of the things that the members of our staff think gamers would appreciate finding in their stockings this year.
“Must Have” Items: Things no gamer should go without this Holiday season.
Assassin’s Creed: Revelations- Ezio and Altair are going out with a bang and you should ensure that your gamer friend’s tag along for the ride. Our own Nathaniel thinks so and was super excited for the game leading up to its release; come to think of it, we don’t think he has stopped playing it since it launched.
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim- If you are going to buy one game for someone this year, a majority of our staff thinks that this should be it. Both Travis and Dan know that if they didn’t already have the game, it would definitely make their Holiday complete to find one under the tree. Tyler seemed to love the game when he reviewed it back in November, surely the gamers in your life will too.
i7-2600K Intel i7 CPU processor along with a Z68 motherboard and 8GB of ram (and a video card in a pear tree)- Seeing the the mention of PC hardware must mean that this is John’s recommendation for the Holiday. According to John, the reports of the death of PC gaming have been greatly exaggerated. The perfect gift in his eyes this year is a system that can be easily upgraded such as the one described above. We sure hope that we are all on John’s Christmas list...
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword- Even if it is buried under a few layers of dust, nearly everyone owns a Wii (or so it seems). Matt thinks that you should do your friends a favor and give them a reason to dust their Nintendo console’s off with Link’s latest adventure. Many people are calling this the best game to release on the Wii, and possibly the last great one before the Wii-U launches next year.
OnLive MicroConsole- What do you get the gamer that has it all? How about the one thing that they don’t even realize that they want? OnLive’s MicroConsole. The OnLive service has grown leaps and bounds this year and the best way to experience it is to use their own dedicated hardware. Jeremy reviewed the system recently and it changed the way he looks at cloud gaming and it just might do the same for you if you give it a chance. He thinks this would be the perfect gift this year.
Serious Sam: BFE- Chuck thinks that the shooter fans in your life would really love Serious Sam’s latest outing. Chances are, they already own the big titles of the year (Modern Warfare 3 and Battlefield 3) so why not give them mix of old school, mindless action with a modern coat of paint?
Star Wars: The Old Republic- Considering that the game launches next week, this is a perfect and timely gift for any would-be Jedi’s or Sith that you may know. Ben has been waiting a long, long time for the game and we’re pretty sure it isn’t just on his list of recommendations, but his personal list for Santa as well.
Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception- Surely no real PlayStation fan is going to go through this Holiday without the accompaniment of Nathan Drake, at least that is what Tyler thinks. Naughty Dog’s latest adventure has been turning heads left and right since it launched last month, including our own Matt’s.
“Big Ticket” Items: If you are going to splurge, and we mean SPLURGE, then these are the things you want to pick up.
Amazon Kindle Fire- We all have to begin to open up and welcome tablet gaming into our lives. If you aren’t willing to drop the money to get an iPad, Travis thinks that the next best option would be Amazon’s new offering. Featuring a 7“ screen and a duel-core processor, the Fire will likely make anyone happy, gamer or not.
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Collector’s Edition- Wow, SKyrim has managed to make its way into 2 separate categories! Tyler isn’t usually one who goes for the super-extra-deluxe packages of games, but Skyrim’s Collector’s box really called out to him this year. The package comes with the game, a 12“ Alduin statue, ‘The Art of Skyrim’ coffee table book, and a ‘Making of...’ DVD... plus it will set you back about $150.
Game of Thrones replica swords: You would be hard pressed to find a bigger Game of Thrones fan than our own Nathaniel, which gives a bit of insight into this recommendation. Seriously though, a lot of gamers also happen to be fans of the hit show and novels so it is a pretty safe bet that they would appreciate these. The website Valyriansteel.com is offering replica versions of many of the show’s iconic blades. Just be prepared to drop a couple couple of hundred on one if you go this route.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX580- John wants even more PC hardware (big surprise)! The PC gamers on your shopping list would love to get one of the biggest and baddest video cards on the market and that is exactly what John recommends. With this piece of hardware, anyone should be able to run all of the latest and greatest PC games on the highest settings with little to no issues.
Optoma HD33 3D Projector: Dan is suddenly all about 3D gaming after spending the Summer with Optoma’s recent projector release. Just make sure that they have the space to make good use out of it, or let them keep it at your place and get some use out of it too.
PlayStation Vita preorder: With Sony’s new handheld launching in less than 2 months, Matt has the perfect gift idea with a preorder of the new system. If you really want to capture the love and adoration of your gaming friends, hook them up with a pre-purchase of the system, as well as some accessories and games so that they don’t have to do it in February.
Sony PlayStation 24“ 3D Television set- 3D gaming is becoming mainstream, which is something many people never thought would happen. After experiencing the joys of 3D gaming, Jeremy recommends getting your loved ones into the game early with Sony’s new entry level 3D television. The PlayStation 3D TV bundles are a great value and come with everything you need to be a part of the 3D revolution.
Ultimate FPS Simulator: When we say big ticket, Chuck means BIG ticket, as in $650,000+. What better way to spend the Holidays shooting your friends online than with a virtual reality system that gives you 3D gameplay, full movement control, and it also shoots back at you.
“Under the Radar” Items: The best gaming gifts that you may not have thought about.
Extra controllers- The funny thing about controllers is that you always seem to need at least one more. Nathaniel recommends picking up one or two for your friends, especially first party offerings. Sure, they may be a little more expensive than some of the 3rd party offerings, but the increase in price is worth it for their quality and reliability.
Gunnar OPTIKS- Anyone who spends a lot of time in front of either a television or computer screen can tell you that it can start to bother your eyes. John recommends picking up a pair of OPTIKS to help alleviate that issue. Plus, they are going to need all the help that they can get to plow through all of the new games that are getting this season!
High-quality rechargeable batteries- You can never have enough batteries during the Holidays, especially if you are a gamer. Nathaniel knows that getting a good brand of rechargeable batteries can help alleviate some of that pain not only during the season, but throughout the year and he recommends doing so for the gamers in your life. Trust us, reliable, rechargeable AA batteries can go a long way in a gaming household.
Need for Speed: The Run- With all of the huge blockbuster’s being released in the past couple of months, Chuck is afraid theat many gamers missed out on the fun of the latest NFS title. The game was a change of pace for the long running series and both he and Dave loved their experiences with it.
PSN / XBL Gift cards- Both Microsoft Sony have been knocking them out of the park this year with their digital offerings and Jeremy, Dan, Matt, and Tyler think that you would be doing anyone a favor by helping them get in the game with gift cards. With such great titles as Rochard, Dungeon Defenders, Orcs Must Die!, Bastion, Odin Sphere, and inFAMOUS: Festival of Blood available on the respective services, it would be a crime not to give gamers a chance to pick out which titles they want. Plus, they could always use extensions on their subscriptions to either Xbox Live or PlayStation Plus!
Psychonauts (Steam game)- Double Fine’s greatest creation was recently re-released on Steam with Mac support (not to mention achievments and cloud saving options). A free copy of the game should put a smile on any gamers’ face, according to Travis.
Last, but certainly not least, is something that the entire Gaming Nexus staff recommends and it won’t cost you a dime: play some games with your friends and family! Even if you aren’t an avid gamer, show some interest and love to the gamers in your life and spend some time with them doing what they love. Who knows, you might walk away loving it more yourself!
Happy Holidays everyone from the entire staff at Gaming Nexus!