2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Gamers

by David WeedmarkUpdated December 01, 2017

If you're looking for a gift that will get the whole family together for an adrenaline-pumping thrill-ride – without giving up the comfort of your own living room – this year's video games and consoles will certainly fit the bill. We've gathered together the best in video games, consoles, bundles and accessories to help you find the best gifts at the best prices. Whether your family prefers the Xbox, Playstation, Nintendo or a gaming PC, you'll be able to check a few items off your shopping list this season. And if you really think you've seen it all already, check out the latest in virtual reality from Oculus Rift.

The Best, Most Talked-About Games

Ghost Recon: Wildlands

Set in the wilds of Bolivia, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Wildlands continues with the tradition of its Rainbow Six predecessors. Working with other players or an AI teammate, players must use stealth to infiltrate enemy strongholds, perform their own recon, and use the precision of a highly-trained sniper to take down enemy combatants. Extreme weather and unfriendly terrain make this a challenging game and its open-world locations mean there is no limit to where you go or how you complete your missions as you take down the leaders of the Santa Blanca organization. ($59.99; Best Buy)

Destiny 2

If your favorite gamer was a fan of the Destiny video game, he or she will love the sequel, Destiny 2, a fast-paced action shooter. After humanity's last city has fallen to the Red Legion, players must travel the far reaches of the solar system, battle villains and unite the last surviving heroes before tracking down and defeating the villain Ghaul. ($59.99; Amazon)

Star Wars Battlefront II

Star Wars fans have been waiting for this game's release for a very long time. Well your destiny is now complete. In Star Wars Battlefront II, players get to fight in a wide range of sets from the movies, from the lush warm planet of Naboo to the frigid ice and snow of Hoth. You can also test your skills in space in 360-degree dogfights, or fight alongside troops as a Jedi Knight or Sith Lord. ($59.99; Amazon)

Consoles for Every Taste and Preference

Xbox One X 1TB

Anyone who enjoys video games would be thrilled to sit in front of Microsoft’s latest Xbox One X. Not only does it have 1TB of storage and 40 percent more power than any other gaming console on the market, it’s the first Xbox to offer a 4K gaming experience – an ideal companion to any 4K UHD TV. This console is backwards-compatible with all your favorite Xbox One games. ($499, Amazon)

Playstation 4

If Star Wars Battlefront II got your attention, but you don't have a console to play it on, you may want to consider the Playstation 4 Star Wars Battlefront II Bundle. It's the same 1 TB Playstation 4 system and controller that fans rave about, with the game already included.

What sets the Sony Playstation 4 apart from the competitors is that it doubles as a Sony BluRay player, so it's a gift the whole family will love, whether they play games on it or not. ($299, Amazon)

Nintendo Switch

For decades, Nintendo has been renowned for its portable gaming consoles. What makes the Switch different is that it connects to your TV when you're home and can be switched to a handheld game when you're out. Kick back the stand and connect two controllers so you can invite a friend to play along with you. You can even connect eight Switches together to play with or against your friends all at the same time. ($299, Amazon)

Fun Accessories For Serious Play

Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Gaming Headset

Sometimes an epic battle isn't something to be shared with everyone in the house. A Turtle Beach Stealth 600 wireless gaming headset keeps all the music and sound effects to a personal level, while giving the player the best in Windows Sonic surround sound. Designed for the Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs, this comfortable headset includes a flip-up microphone, audio presets and many more features. ($99, Best Buy).

Elgato Game Capture

And sometimes a game just needs to be shared with the world. Have you ever wondered how people stream their video games online and become YouTube superstars? The answer is a game capture device, like the affordable Elgato Game Capture HD60. Designed for both the Xbox One and the Playstation 4, this little device captures 1080p HD video at 60 frames per second and saves them for you in surprisingly small files that can upload online in a matter of seconds. ($159.99, Best Buy)

Game Console Travel Case

If you're traveling to the cottage for a weekend, or just want to bring your game console over to a friend's for the day, getting it there safely, with all the wires and components, couldn't be easier with this hard travel case. This case is made specifically for the Playstation 4, so you'll be certain it fits perfectly inside the dust-proof, shockproof and water-resistant hard shell case. ($56.99, Best Buy)

Deals to Watch For This Season

Recon Tech Special Edition Wireless Controller

If you have a special person in your life who takes their gaming seriously, you may want to treat them to a serious military-grade controller. The Recon Tech Special Edition wireless controller by Microsoft not only has a sleek military design, it has a firm diamond grip to prevent it from slipping under the most extreme circumstances. As a bonus, its Bluetooth technology works with both the Xbox One and any Windows 10 PC or tablet. ($59.95, Amazon)

PlayStation 4 Boots On the Ground Bundle

Released in November 2017, Call of Duty WWII brings the first-person shooter experience to a whole new level, starting with the D-Day invasion of Normandy and driving onward towards the Rhine through one major battle after another. For a limited time, you can get this game as part of the Boots on the Ground Bundle, complete with an army backpack, Season Pass and lenticular print. ($149.99, Best Buy)

Oculus Rift VR Gaming Bundle

For the most immersive gaming experience, nothing beats virtual reality. Once solely the domain of science fiction, you can bring the magic of VR right into your own study or living room. The Oculus Rift and Touch Virtual Reality Headset Bundle includes a visor, VR headset and two controllers so you can interact in a game or explore new worlds with both hands. It even comes with six free VR games. Connect it to any compatible Windows computer and you'll be immersed in no time. ($399.99, Best Buy)


About the Author

A published author and professional speaker, David Weedmark has advised businesses and governments on technology for more than 20 years. He has taught computer science at Algonquin College, has started three successful technology businesses, and has written hundreds of articles for newspapers, magazines and online publications on computers and other technology topics.

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