|Stuck for gift ideas? Never fear; Liam is here the advice you need.|
Christmas: itâ€™s about Jesus, turkeys, trees, bad television, and drunken relatives. Oh, and a glut of video game releases. Indeed, the industry always releases a plethora of video games around the holiday season in attempts to earn your custom. And with so many video games out there, it can be hard to know what exactly you should purchase.
Consoles are the most important part of video gaming. Trying to game without a console is like trying to sail without a boat. So before anyone can get their game on, theyâ€™ve got to have the kit. But while consoles share similar features and games, each one is unique in its own way. And what console is right depends on the type of person.
Donâ€™t discount the littlies either, however; Viva Pinata, the next PokĂ©mon, is on the way and Xbox Live Arcade titles make great, cheap purchases to satiate hungry gamers (RRP ~$8 to ~ $25).
In the 1980s and early 1990s, Nintendo was synonymous with gaming. Now itâ€™s back with a vengeance, and itâ€™s impressing everyone with its new Wii console. Unlike other consoles, the Wii uses a special motion-sensing controller. This allows players' movements to be directly translated into the game, making for a more natural and intuitive experience. But who would be interested in a Wii?
The Nintendo Wii will have a wide range of support from other companies, and will also be the only place you can find classic Nintendo franchises like Metroid, Zelda, and Mario. The innovative controller means that anyone can enjoy the Nintendo Wii, regardless of previous experience.
With the PLAYSTATION 3 being delayed until March next year, Sony is pushing the PlayStation 2 for the holiday season. The PlayStation 2 is the most popular video games console in the world, having shipped an excess of 100 million units. Itâ€™s an established machine with a great range of titles. But who would enjoy a PlayStation 2?
Itâ€™s hard to pinpoint the ideal PlayStation 2 user because the console appeals to many. Thatâ€™s why it has been so successful. In recent years it has enjoyed success due to its range of accessible games such as SingStar and Buzz!
Sony PSP/Nintendo DS
There is also the option of the portable consoles. These machines are excellent for a variety of reasons. For a start, theyâ€™ve got everything included, even the screen, so thereâ€™s no need to get extra gear and thereâ€™s no worry of someone hogging the TV. An ideal owner for a portable console would:
While the Sony PSP touts a lot of special features, most of them arenâ€™t up to much at all. At the end of the day, these are game machines, and youâ€™ll want to pick them based on their respective catalogues.
Naturally, youâ€™re also going to need to have some games to play. If your loved one already has a machine, then itâ€™s probably best to merely supply him or her with new games instead of buying them a whole new machine. Here are some of the best games for the holiday season, along with a quick word on who would enjoy them the most.
The biggest game of the year, Twilight Princess has been highly anticipated for years. With an global average of 9.6/10, is not only one of the biggest games of the year, itâ€™s also one of the best.
Best Suited for hardcore gamers.
Gears of War (Xbox 360)
Another big game for this year, another game that was anticipated for years, and another game that lived up to the hype. We gave it 9.3, and you can find out why here.
Best suited for people who like to action movies and shooting things. (R16)
Viva Pinata (Xbox 360)
If Microsoft has its way, your children, if you have any, will be bugging you for this soon enough. However, itâ€™s also an excellent game that can be enjoyed by adults as well. We gave it 9.4, and you can find out why here.
Best suited as a cheap, safe present for all ages.
Madden 07 (Wii)
Madden 07 is an American Football game. While the sport isnâ€™t as popular here as it is in the USA, the games are still big sellers. The Wii version is especially good because of the new controllers that make it feel like youâ€™re actually playing.
Best suited for sports fans.
SingStar Legends (PS2)
SingStar is an absolute phenomenon, appealing to a vast number of people thanks to its simple mechanic: you just sing! SingStar Legends is the best line-up yet, and everyone is sure to find a song they enjoy.
RRP: $99.95 w/ mics; $59.95 game only.
Best suited for people who play with friends.
Tekken: Dark Resurrection (PSP)
Tekken: Dark Resurrection is the latest instalment of the classic fighting game franchise. Now gamers can play it while on the move, thanks to this excellent portable version. We gave it 8.8, and you can find out why here.
Best suited for people who like martial arts.
LocoRocoâ€™s cute, adorable charm is hard to resist, and itâ€™s simple yet fantastic game-play is some of the best youâ€™ll ever play. We gave it 9.5, and you can find out why here.
Best suited for people who donâ€™t take themselves too seriously.
Need for Speed Carbon (All formats)
Need for Speed is a long running racing game franchise, and Carbon is the latest instalment. It contains real cars that you can customise before you take them to the streets in search of competition -- a petrol-head's dream!.
RRP: $49.95 to $129.95
Best suited for petrol-heads and boy racers.
Guitar Hero II (PS2)
Like SingStar, Guitar Hero II is popular because itâ€™s simple and it makes you feel like a star. Nothing beats rocking out with the guitar controller. Itâ€™s a bit harder than SingStar, so itâ€™s not for everyone, but fans of rock music will love it.
RRP: $169.95 w/ guitar; $99.95 game only.
Best suited for people who play the air guitar.
Canis Canem Edit (PS2)
Canis Canem Edit takes Grand Theft Autoâ€™s successful sandbox formula and mixes it up by placing you in a school where you must stand-up to bullies and win the respect of the school. We gave it 8.5, and you can find out why here.
Best suited for fans of Grand Theft Auto (R13)
Splinter Cell: Double Agent (Xbox 360, PS2, Wii)
Splinter Cell returns, and this time with an added twist: you must now assume the role of a double agent as he once again tries to save the world! We gave it 8.9, and you can find out why here.
RRP: $109.95 to $129.95
Best suited for people who love Tom Clancy novels.
So there you have it. These are our best suggestions for gifts for loved ones this Christmas. Remember: if youâ€™re unsure, it always pays to check. Additionally, itâ€™s worth making sure that youâ€™re not getting something that your loved ones already own. Most stores have strict policies about returned software.