14th December 2009 - Christmas comes but once a year, and the hit lists keep on coming. So this week All Age Gaming gives you a look at some of the stocking stuffers you might have missed. There are still a few weeks to go, so get those orders in quick if not for Christmas then for a new year’s mail-box surprise. So, in no particular order- 10 things you know you want, but never knew you needed.
Dragon Age: Origins LE 'codex' Strategy Guide
This bad boy is all the rage at moment and very hard to find. Best to order it in from another shop or try to nab it second hand online. What’s the difference between a normal strategy guide and a Limited Edition one? About 100 pages, a history on the law of the world, hard cover, artworks and all signed by the Bioware team themselves. It reads like a D&D rule book or codex but without any of the hard to read instructions and dice rolls. Both DLC are represented here as well as a bunch of extra. Great value at 400 pages for the Dragon Age fans.
The art of Oddworld
Until someone wakes up and rekindles the flames of Oddworld for a new generation, this book will forever remember the creation that was. This should be on every wish list every year until everyone has a copy. It is just an art book, so may limit its appeal to some, but the redeeming value is the collection of some of the finest ideas in gaming last century. Covering all the creatures and locations of said Oddworld, this is only going to go up in price. Very hard to find
Half Life 2: Raising the bar
Another rare book, it's not often that developers disclose all on the history of their company. This book released with Half Life 2, is still a keeper. It reveals great incite into Valve and just how much effort goes into each game. Detailing history from Half Life through Counterstrike, Team Fortress and Half Life 2, this was one of the first hints as to the direction of Episode 3. Until said episode surfaces from beneath the ice, this book is an excellent read. Facial mapping processes and modeling are detailed as well as all the people who lent their voices and faces to Half Life 2.
Video Game Comics
Used to be that comics on our favorite past time, were hard to come by, relegated to the nether regions of the inter-web. Thee days, any company in the business of merchandise has either a successful comic series or at least a few books. Tim over at Ctl+Alt+Del has been doing this for a while and has a few collections up for grabs. There are even some rare #1 and #2 editions of a spin off series. Red vs. Blue also publishes their compendium of comic moments. It’s a great way to archive months of comics and gives you something to do while passing through that Christmas turkey, sitting down, not standing up of course.
Ctl+Alt+Del Season 2
Price: aprox. $30.00
So on the back of so many comics comes a new wave of video merchandise, machinima or cartoons. Season 2 of the popular Ctl+Alt+Del series has about 12 episodes and a bunch of extras including the making of some his work. The quality is better than season 1 although the whole deal, a tad short. Essentially a compile of Flash Animation shorts ranging 10-15 minuets. With some swearing and bad language it manages to capture the spirit of gaming and still provide a few laughs. A guilty pleasure. Currently offering 15% discounts on all stock
Red vs. Blue: Reconstruction
Price: aprox. $30.00
After 100+ episodes and multiple series, the boys (and girls) at Roosterteeth HQ just don't know when to quit. Reconstruction follows the previous series which followed directly the end of the 100 odd episodes and a number of mini-series. Confused? You may well be, but all the while the voice acting in this Halo 3 shot series is excellent. Machinima at its finest, 20 episodes play out the adventures of 2 misfit armies and an ever growing cast of extras. Included are 12 odd episode shorts of live action 'stand up' comedy, almost funnier than the show itself. (Keep an eye out for Pongo, the evil purple muppet)
Price: aprox. $30.00
Geek-o-meter: Warm Fuzziness
An oldy but a goody, you can never pass up the cute-ness of your favorite video games characters ala plushies, soft cuddly friends that get you all the girls. So buy one for her, then steal it and never let it go. The Valve Cubes from Portal are also very popular though a pet head crab for the lounge is gaming gold. There is even a version for wearing, well, on your head. Nintendo characters have been doing the rounds for a while but now it’s the in-thing to have a geek plushie to feed to the dog, or snuggle at night.
Especially at this time of year, gamers need T-shirts. And if you're up with this new idea of washing and cleaning you might even want 2 or 3. There is a T-shirt for every gamer and every game, depending on your taste. From Team Fortress to Griff Ball and every Zombie loving face palming teenager in between, there is a color for every season. Female 'baby' tees are also all the rage with some rare T-s such as the Sarcastic Gamer ones just on the market.
If you haven't heard of Sumo Omni or the Sumo lounge range of products, then you need to get with the program. Made of only the best materials they have been around in Australia for a number of years now. Instead of polystyrene beads, chocked up 'foam' is used for less mess and more comfort. With a range of sizes including the human swallowing; 'lets make out inside the couch', not to mention one specifically tailored to the all-day gamer; there is a bag for everyone. A range of colors, prices vary but include free delivery.
Life size 1:1 scale Tekken 6 statues
Geek-o-meter: Pimp Daddy
If you can believe it, someone is trying to sell this thing for about 500 English pounds on EBay. For the rest of us the only hope is to enter a number of comps at the moment and win one. JBHIFI are currently offering them and if Tekken 6 is not your thing there are also 6ft tall Terminators floating around. This massive sign of status are just the thing for your front lawn, garage or office. No one will ever mess with you again let alone visit once they see that you! Have replica Tekken 6 characters facing off for the entire world to see. Creepy when you go to sleep, I'm still waiting for Lara Croft - 6ft and 40 DD- bring it on!
Phew! Well you're going to need a stocking the size of a small moon just to fit all that swag in the bag. Spread it out over a year, and by next Christmas you might even be ready to start again. Merry Christmas and happy Hunting!
Article Written By Ian Crane