This year’s gift guide goes out to all of you last minute shoppers who need to pick up some games and gifts for all the nerds in your life. Many of our suggestions are products we’ve reviewed, so I will link to the review where appropriate.
- Dominion: My #1 recommendation. Basically, if you know a lot of lapsed Magic players, this is the ideal game. A game powered by deck building, without the complexities of Magic timing, in one very replayable package.
- Battlestar Galactica Board Game: For a meatier experience, or for those fond of the TV show, an easy choice. A bit complex, but not as long as complex as many other FFG titles. Plus, you get to call your friends “frakkin’ toasters.”
- Say Anything: For the party gamers you know, especially those who enjoy games like Wits & Wagers or Apples to Apples, this is a great choice. Just be warned that “Your Mom” is often a winning answer, so you’ll have to be careful when playing it with… your mom.
- Covert Action: Shoot your friends! At $6 retail, a great stocking stuffer.
- Monty Python Fluxx: Another great stocking stuffer that (finally) combines the gameplay of Fluxx with Monty Python quoting. My hovercraft is full of eels!
- D&D Starter Set: For those just starting into D&D.
- Player’s Handbook: For those just starting to play 4e.
- Player’s Handbook Deluxe Edition: For those who are just starting to play 4e who you want to sleep with and think buying this will help. (It also has some errata and a shiny cover.)
- Martial Power: For the Fighter in the party who has saved your Wizardly butt in more combats than you can count.
- Advanced Player’s Guide or Forgotten Heroes: For the person in your gaming group who really, really wanted to play a Druid.
- Draconomicon: For your DM, assuming you want your character to be eaten by dragons.
- Shadows of Cthulhu: For your GM, assuming you want your character to be eaten by Cthulhu (after going insane.)
- Aces & Eights: For the cowboy-wannabe in your life.
- The Gamers: Dorkness Rising: The long-awaited sequel to The Gamers is finally out. Like the original, this one is great even for the non-gamers in your life: it’s just that funny.
- Futurama movies: Bender’s Big Score, Beast with a Billion Backs, Bender’s Game: The new DVDs are essential for any Futurama fan, even if they don’t quite stack up to the original shows. Bender’s Game especially is a must because of its focus on D&D.
- The Dark Knight: A huge commercial and critical success that may be the best Batman movie we’ll ever see.
- The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters: Alternatively touching, epic, and hilarious, this documentary about the competetive arcade game world is worth it for anyone who has ever jumped over a barrel thrown by a monkey.
- Hellboy 2: Not only a great adaptation of a great comic with a new story, there’s plenty there to steal for your campaigns.
- Mario Kart Wii: Though a controversial game, multiplayer racing is still a blast and being able to find opponents over the Internet is a great benefit.
- Left 4 Dead: A game I felt flew under the radar a bit (and was easy to dismiss as “yet another zombie game”) ended up featuring innovative mechanics and fantastic multiplayer play.
- Fallout 3: A game that all but dominated the radar once it was released, it brings things closer to our home by depicting a post-nuclear disaster Washington DC which you roam around, interact with the denizens, and choose to either do good or be a total jackass.
- Fable 2: A worthy successor to the original that includes hours of fun gameplay and a good storyline.
- Braid: An innovative and unique platformer… and a steal at $15.
- All-Star Superman Vol. 1: Grant Morrison’s Tour-De-Force is one of the best takes on Superman ever, and that’s no exagerration. Even if you don’t care for Superman at all, this is one to check out.
- Starman Omnibus Vol. 1: After years of spotty availability, this classic series about an unconventional superhero is being re-released in larger hardcover forms. This is one of the best superhero series ever made, and this format only helps new readers discover it.
- Watching the Watchmen: The Definitive Companion to the Ultimate Graphic Novel: A new companion to the ground-breaking graphic novel. There have been plenty of other works done about Watchman, but this is the only one that both features Dave Gibbons’s concept work and Chip Kidd’s always fantastic design.
- Mr. Scootles: It’s unlikely that you’ve heard of this underground comic- unless you’ve listened to me singing its praises. Finally, after a mess of publication problems, the entire first arc is collected here- where we are introduced to the world of a cartoon character trapped in Hell, and the sinister secrets of a small art school.
And the rest
- The old standby, the Amazon gift card. If you’re going to buy them anyway, why not buy them for us? It costs you nothing extra, but you get to also support the site.
- Anything from one of our previous gift guides: 2007 (Games, Comics & Everything Else), 2006 (DVDs, T-Shirts, Games, Everything Else)
May you receive whatever you want this holiday season, and I hope we’ve helped find some great gifts.