Holiday Gift (Card) Guide

Make good use of those cards you have piling up.

Every year we are given tons of gift cards from relatives and family that simply don’t know what to buy for us. This year instead of telling you what you should ask for this holiday, we tell you what to look out for with all of those cards you have piling up in your wallet. So scratch those promo codes and head out to pick up your gaming goodies without dealing with the holiday rush.


The new Xbox 360 controller
$64.99

Just recently released, the new wireless 360 controller comes equipped with a new color scheme, upgraded analog sticks, and most importantly, an improved “transforming” D-pad. It comes bundled with a play and charge kit so you can charge up your controller while you play, no batteries required. The new D-pad can shift from your standard 360 D-Pad to a new popped up version for better controls. So, if you’re having trouble throwing Hadoukens in Super Street Fighter IV, this new D-pad will help you out a good amount.


Turtle Beach Ear Force PX21 gaming headset
$65-$79

These headsets are some of the best on the market. Made for the 360, PS3, and PC, these headsets allow the user to modify both chat controls as well as in game sounds all on the fly. Powered all through USB, it has a dynamic bass booster for better depth sounds, and it even recognizes when the in game sounds gets louder and automatically turns up the volume of the in game chat. Turtle Beach has a knack for making quality headsets at a decent price.


Mad Catz Street Fighter IV Round 2 Fight Stick
$105-$120

For all the fighting game fans out there, this is possibly the best investment you can make to better your fighting game play. It has an 8 button layout and multi speed turbo functionality. It uses authentic Sanwa parts that can be swapped and are interchangeable for the hardcore users. The stick itself is super responsive and moves in a square gate restrictor. It works great with most fighting games that support arcade sticks, and another thing to get you ready for Marvel Vs. Capcom 3. It may be a little pricy, but is absolutely worth the money. Available for both the 360 and the PS3.


PDP PS3 Dual Triggers
$5-$8

This is something a little different. The PS3 controller, while fantastic has a bit of a problem with its L2 and R2 “triggers.” They just don’t feel responsive enough. Some times, your fingers will just slip off the button while you’re holding them down. It can become annoying at times. That’s where the Dual Triggers come in. Compatible with both the SIXAXIS and Dualshock 3 controllers, the Dual Triggers offer just enough grip and pull to keep your fingers in place and still allow for better responsiveness. They help out in shooters, racing, and many other games. They’re really cheap, and offer a substantial amount of support.


Kinect
$149.99

Motion gaming has become a staple of our current generation whether or not we like it as hardcore gamers. That said Kinect is easily the most impressive of the three big console manufacturers. I admit I was shocked at how accurate and fun the technology is. The games available now are nice showcases of the tech as well as being tons of fun. If you only snag one motion-controlled camera this holiday Kinect is the way to go. The future of the device is bright and perhaps we will even have some core games that utilize the functionality in a cool way.


CM4 Accessories
$9.99-$24.99

CM4 is an up-and-coming company that creates slick and stylish cases for portable gaming devices and the Wii Remote. We had a chance to sit down with both the DS cases as well as the Wii Remote jacket. The hard rubber cases are great protection for your devices while also remaining stylish and looking slick. The Wii Remote jacket looks great and makes it easy to change batteries with a zip-up opening in the back. You can snag these cases for a great price over at the website and tote around your portables in style.


HKS PS3 Racing Controller
$54.99

PS3 racing game fans have always been envious of the slick triggers on the 360 controller, but with HKS’ new controller that is no longer the case. This slick device has a thumb steering wheel and pressure sensitive buttons for gas and brake. There is a switch on the back of the controller to flip between control schemes and even a slick digital readout on the front that lets you know the pressure you are applying. If you are a racing game fan and own a PS3 you NEED to own this controller. It is built with incredible quality as long as you can stomach playing with a wired controller again.


PlayStation Move (Various Bundles)
$49.99-$99.99

As I mentioned earlier motion gaming is here to stay. Sony’s answer mimics the Wii more than anything but also perfects the technology. The wand remote is unrivaled in motion tracking and Sony has patched several games to support the technology including FPS titles such as MAG and the upcoming KillZone 3. While the bundles are confusing I recommend going for the $99 Sports Champions bundle as long as you don’t already own a PSEye. There are plenty of different titles and many of them truly great to play either alone or with friends.


Ken McKown

Ken is the Editor-in-Chief of this hole in the wall and he loves to troll for the fun of it. He also enjoys long walks through Arkham Asylum and the cool air of Shadow Moses Island. His turn-ons include Mortal Kombat, Metal Gear Solid and StarCraft.