Holiday Gift Guide 2012: Video Games

 

Guild Wars 2No matter where you live, what you do, or who you are, when you pick up the controller, you are now the hero and have the power to change the world. Video games make great gifts, because they are immersive, replayable, and offer experiences that can’t be had anywhere else.  Our experts put down their controllers long enough to tell you about the best games this holiday season.  ~Jason Enright





Guild Wars 2 (PC):

Recommended by Sean Foster

I have played a lot of MMOs in my day, but I have to say Guild Wars 2 really takes the cake. Not only is the gameplay absolutely addicting and brings a fresh take on a familiar genre, but throw this game on your wish list and you won't have to worry about any of those pesky monthly fees! That in itself is almost worth it, but the game also manages to bring everything you love about MMOs without being too familiar. Gone are the quest logs and constant searching for a healer for groups. And, interacting with your fellow players is as simple as walking into an "Event" and joining in on the fun. You are also awarded with XP for doing pretty much anything in the game, be it slaying monsters, mining for ore, or even resurrecting your fallen comrades. The main story line isn't anything special, but the game makes up for that with fast, addictive gameplay that you won't want to put down.




Torchlight 2Torchlight 2 (PC):
Recommended by Sean Foster


Torchlight 2 is the answer for everyone out there who was really excited for Diablo 3 but didn't feel like shelling out the cash or were disappointed by its "online only" play. Torchlight 2 is a loot-infested joyride that is just as fun and addicting as the Diablo series but at only $20 for purchase. Choosing between four main character classes, the Embermage, The Engineer, The Berserker, or The Outlander, each class brings something different to the table in your search for the sweet, sweet loot. Play solo or play online with your friends! This game is a blast and also doesn't require any sort of monthly fee, so you can worry about collecting your own loot without worrying about spending it in real life.



FTL 1FTL (PC)

Recommended by Kristine Chester

In FTL, the player takes control of a starship and its crew on the run from the Rebel Fleet. Players control the crew, having them man stations, repair damage, and repel boarders while also controlling the workings of the ship such as distributing power to systems and firing weapons. Every game of FTL is completely new thanks to its randomized encounters. As the ship and crew survive missions, existing systems can be upgraded and new equipment purchased using collected scrap. Encounters provide new solutions based on the ship's resources, such as available systems and the species of the crew. The game is very addictive but also incredibly tough. Encounters can go south quickly without the proper attention, but the randomized nature of the game makes it easy to start up again. Available from www.ftlgame.com at a price tag of $10, FTL is a great pick-up game worth hours of entertainment.



Borderlands2 with ReviewBorderlands 2 (Playstation, Xbox 360, PC)

Recommended by Kristine Chester

Superior to the original in every way, Borderlands 2 combines the RPG mechanics and loot gathering of an MMO with a first-person shooter perspective and style of gameplay. The number of guns in this game is staggering, with enough variety to make every style of play a viable option. The game features a lovably wacky and brilliantly voice-acted cast who keep the side quests from becoming just another way of gaining experience and loot. The central story is a definite improvement over the original with the villain, Handsome Jack, a highlight and one of the funniest parts of the game. Borderlands 2 has nearly as many pop culture references and easter eggs as it does guns, making it a must play not just for the loot lover but the pop-culture geek, as well.



Zero RewardZero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward (Nintendo 3DS):
Recommended by Sean Foster


Back in 2010, Aksys Games took a gamble releasing their game, 999: Nine Hours, Nine Person, Nine Doors, in America. Playing as more of a visual, interactive novel (a genre non-existent here in the States) than a standard video game, it followed nine characters trapped together in a life-or-death situation. The game became a sleeper hit and now the creators have brought us the much-anticipated sequel! While it CAN play as a stand-alone game, you would be doing yourself a great disservice if you didn't pick up 999 first. To reveal too much of the story would ruin the experience, as it involves a group of people caught in a deadly game concocted by a very Jigsaw-esque villain, where every choice you make determines who lives and who dies. You'll definitely lose sleep on this one, as I've spent many nights glued to my DS, excited for what will happen next.

 

 

 

 

 

Last modified on Friday, 21 June 2013 01:34

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