Another holiday season is upon us, and you have a chance to show your loved
ones how much you care by spending money on them. You may think you have it
easy if you’re buying things for the gamers in your life, but how can you be sure they don't already own the game you're looking to get them? Also, don’t be
predictable in your gifts, just handing them a copy of Skyrim with a hurried
“Merry Whatever.” Think outside the box! To help you we've collected a list of things
gamers would love to have that aren’t the hottest games of the year. And if you
are looking for the best games to buy for someone here's a helpful video.
And if you need more gift ideas, many of the items on last year's list
are still available.
But before we begin, you should also know we’re giving away TWO ITEMS from this
list to a lucky reader. Keep reading to find out how to enter.
Things to read
The Last Guardian may seem like it’s never coming out, but
the wait for Team Ico’s next game might go by faster if you read the recently
translated novel ICO: Castle in the Mist
based on the PS2 classic. If you want something more up to date, how about an
original adventure of Nathan Drake’s in the tome Uncharted: The Fourth Labyrinth
by Christopher Golden? And if you’re interested in the world behind game
creation, there’s All Your Base Are Belong to Us: How Fifty Years of Videogames Conquered Pop Culture
a great book we looked at earlier this year.
And if you want to build your Transformers knowledge up before the next game
comes out, there’s Transformers Vault: The Complete Transformers Universe.
Perhaps the giftee would like books with significantly
fewer words. In that case there are always new comics based on games. The
collected companion to Halo: Reach subtitled Boot Camp
is by some top comics talent and provides valuable background info on
Master Chief. If you prefer your space marines a little more profane, there’s
the second volume of DC's Gears of War book. Should your friends desire some background on one of the most mysterious figures in the Mass Effect
universe, there’s Mass Effect Volume 2: Evolution,
and if they can’t get enough of all things Valve, there’s Dark Horse’s just
released Valve Presents: The Sacrifice and Other Steam-Powered Stories Volume 1,
which includes stories based on games like Portal and Team Fortress 2.
For those that want some more background on one of the year's best game, there’s
the very good Batman: Arkham City comic
which was written by Paul Dini and
bridges Arkham Ayslum to this year’s instant
Bat-classic. Telltale’s upcoming series based on Walking Dead has no better companion than Walking Dead Compendium One,
the affordable monster of a trade paperback that collects the first 48 issues
of the amazing series. And you know someone that wants to read American Sonic comics but were
afraid of all the history, grab Sonic: Genesis,
which serves as both a Sonic anniversary celebration and a great jumping on
point for those interested in the Archie Comics spin on the hedgehog.
If you’re tastes in comics aren’t that Western, there’s
still the world of manga starring your favorite game
characters. Viz put out the very impressive ten-volume The Legend of Zelda Manga Box Set
that has Japanese comics retelling many of the classic moments in Zelda
history. For something from Nintendo that’s more recent, there’s this
year’s manga retelling of Pokemon Black and White.
Should you know someone who has been disappointed by the lack of Mega Man games this year, some older
manga adaptations were recently localized in the series Mega Man Gigamix.
And to keep the Capcom love flowing, there’s also the newly imported Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Manga.
However, if you’d rather forgo reading almost entirely and
just look at pretty pictures, there's still gift options out there. Halo - The Art of Building Worlds
is a great retrospective that accompanied the franchise’s
anniversary (we wrote about it before here).
For those that buy all their clothes at Hot Topic, there’s The Art of Alice: The Madness Returns
art book, which plays up what was easily the strongest feature of the forgotten
title. Comic book nerds that love the art of Joe Madureira would probably enjoy The Art of Darksiders
which they can flip through while waiting for Darksiders II. Earlier this year
we talked about how spectacular the most recent iam8bit art exhibition looks,
and now it’s been collected in one book ready for coffee tables everywhere in Super iam8bit.
If you have friends that prefer the lovely line
work of Japanese games, you need not spend tons of money on importing some of
these localized art books. Fans of Persona and Shin Megami Tensi
will enjoy the Shigenori Soejima Artworks
that collects work of the singular artist. Those that love underrated PS3-exclusives
should grab the Valkyria Chronicles Design Archive
to flip through pages of art that are almost as lovely as the gorgeous series.
Speaking of cult beauties, you can still find copies of Okami: Official Complete Works
out there, so you can celebrate one of GR’s favorites. If you prefer more
popular Capcom games, SF fanboys would love Street Fighter IV & Super Street Fighter IV: Official Complete Works.
And Mega Man fans that have felt slighted this year will find further comfort
in UDON's Mega Man Tribute
which has multiple comic artists giving tribute to the Blue Bomber.