Video Games

This year's hot gifts for gamers

Lego Jurassic World

I've always respected and appreciated the mechanics of the Lego videogame franchise — they take violent and adult-centered content from movies and pop culture and transform it into very acceptable and appropriate video game content for kids. Take Lego Jurassic World, for instance. Jurassic World the movie is filled with prehistoric murder-monsters violently dismembering and consuming throngs of innocent civilians. Lego Jurassic World? An adorable adventure game rated "E for everyone." For one, Lego velociraptors are just dang adorable. Second, Legos can't bleed. With the removal of the "scary" and the gore, this game serves as a solid recommendation for kids (and is conveniently available on nearly every console).

Star Wars: Battlefront

In a brilliant and cunning marketing collaboration by Disney and EA, the release of the new Star Wars movie was heralded by the release of a Star Wars video game, Star Wars: Battlefront. Bask in the glory that is Star Wars season and immerse your giftee in everything that is the Force. Battlefront is available on PS4, PC, and Xbox One, so it's a safe bet that your gamer has (at least) one console capable of supporting the magnitude that is yet another Star Wars game. 'Tis the season for midichlorians and yuletide, after all.

Star Wars stuff

Impending global encapsulation weighs heavily upon the consciousness of collectors as Star Wars season approaches, nerds young and old clutching to their memorabilia as the clock counts ever steadily down to the moment when Episode VII hits the silver screen. But what about the nerds who have no memorabilia to clutch? Get them Star Wars stuff. Lightsaber flashlights. R2D2 plushies. T-shirts with hearty and memorable Chewbacca puns. Sheets with stormtrooper patterns. Matching jewelry emblazoned with the phrases "I love you" and "I know." Fanboys love stuff. Take the opportunity to reap the benefits of a pop-culture revival and load them up with some nerd swag.

Network switch

Approach this gift warily, as only the most hardened of LAN gamers will appreciate the raw power and electrifying intensity of their very own network switch. Don't know what a network switch does? Look upon this device as a magical box that brings neckbeards together. Just as ancestral man once huddled around warm fires to share epic tales, turbo-nerds huddle around such switches, using the hand-wavey magic of the Internet to game together in one place (usually a mother's basement). As a casual side note, a network switch has many useful home application for those who look to turn their homes into overpowered tech control centers. Bonus gift idea: Wrap your switch up with some Doritos, Mountain Dew and weed.

Fallout 4

Everyone and their chinchilla wants Fallout 4, so just get it for your giftee already. No surprises here — Fallout is a great game series and every respectable gamer will want to add the experience to their impressive repertoire of playtime. And we've all been waiting several hundred years for its release into the cosmos. Set in a postapocalyptic wasteland, Fallout is all about survival, radiation, the rusty ruins of humanity and people with dirt-smeared faces who obviously haven't bathed in centuries. If your giftee hasn't already come clamoring to you about Fallout, it's safe to say they will enjoy the game if they liked the Elder Scroll series. Or if they play video games at all and have a pulse.

LED strip lighting and accoutrements

Although LED strip lighting doesn't necessarily sound fun, there's something just peachy about making things glow, blink, and strobe in a thousand various color and frequency combinations. Peachy and oddly addicting. Have a giftee who likes getting down and putting things together? Someone who could use a little more ambiance lighting in their life? Pick up an LED strip lighting kit (should include strip lighting, connectors, and a power supply) and watch them apply lights to nearly everything in their house... and then never stop. Soon they'll discover the childlike/narcotic joy of applying under-cabinet lighting, lining truck beds, and pimping out the inside of computer towers with what can only be described as a color-gasm of limitless potential.

Nerdy tabletop game accessories

Statistically, people who huddle in basements around video games also enjoy huddling in basements around nerdy tabletop games. Magic the Gathering, Dungeons and Dragons, Force of Will, Warhammer — if any of the aforementioned get your attention, I suggest heading down to a nearby game shop and asking the service people their recommendations for fun, game-related accessories. Most of these games involve some sort of fancy dice. Some of them involve neat figurines. All of them tout many creative and unique ways to spend money. Keep in mind the following pro tips for maximum money expenditure. If your game of choice involves cards, you can't go wrong with booster packs. If your game involves dice, dice bags made of chain mail always elevate your nerd to coolest nerd on the block.

RAM, SSD, and other expensive acronyms

Whether they're using their computers for crazy competitive online gaming, bitcoin mining, or intensive TurboTax calculations, computer components are an underrated gift for those who have built their own rig. Best talk to your nerd before grabbing a random graphics card, though. Although this may remove the element of surprise, it is almost a guarantee that some part of their "baby" needs to be upgraded or replaced. As time goes forward in an impenetrable march towards computational sentience, processors get better, graphics get sharper, monitors get crisper, and computers get more and more outdated by the second. The following questions are sure to produce a desirable answer. "Do you need more RAM?" "Would you like another hard drive?" "Could you use an SSD?" "Do you want to upgrade your monitors?"♦

  • or

About The Author