Some people are easier to shop for than others. Gamers tend to be transparent; they’ll straight up tell you which games and systems to buy for them (as I’ve done, year after year). But for those who want to think outside the box, I’ve put together some nifty video game holiday presents divided by the type of gamer you’re shopping for.
This is the most proud type of gamer. He knows Final Fantasy VII inside out and isn’t ashamed of letting people know it. So let him show off with apparel and accessories for gamers – believe it or not, they do exist. Penny Arcade and ThinkGeek have video game-themed tees, hoodies and even jewelry (including these super-manly Gears of War dog tags). Trust me, it’s an easier video game gift idea than embroidering their BioShock 2 achievement list onto a quilt.
The casual gamer is a more recent subset of gamers, born from Wii-playing soccer moms and Farmville-addicted teenagers. A handheld gaming device is ideal for them, the best two options being an iPod Touch or the Nintendo DSi XL (which you can nab with free shipping thanks to our GameStop coupons). The DS has a truly insane amount of casual games, so there’s guaranteed to be something for everyone.
The nostalgic gamer loves classic video game icons. Mario, Sonic and Pac-Man beat Nathan Drake and Master Chief any day. They’ll be more than happy with any old-school gaming paraphernalia you can give them. ThinkGeek has a really impressive retro gaming section, my personal favorite being the Retro NES USB Controller. The nostalgic gamer has plenty of NES emulators on his computer anyway, you might as well give him the right tool for it.
So the gamer in your life has an Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Nintendo Wii and all the t-shirts, peripherals and collectibles. What could possibly be left? Something he probably hasn’t touched in a long time: books. There are tons of legitimately interesting video game theory and history books in publication, including Replay: The History of Games and Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter. If anything, his mom will be relieved he’s reading something that’s not on a computer or TV screen.
Have a video game gift idea of your own? Let us know!
Looking for other presents? See our full list of gift ideas!