Dec 7, 2011

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Holiday Gift Guide: Family Gamers

Holiday Gift Guide: Family Gamers

Can you hear it? See it? Christmas is drawing near, and if you are like me, you still haven’t started your shopping for loved ones and friends. Or maybe you just need to pick up a few stocking stuffers. Buying for the hardcore gamer in your life can be a chore, but don’t think that shopping for the kids or family-oriented gaming parents is going to be easy. That’s where we hope to help you out. Vivid Gamer presents a shopping guide of games for each of the major consoles that is sure to be perfect for family game night. Don’t have a family? Check out our guide for the casual gamers on your list.


Microsoft Xbox 360

Dance Central 2

Granted, the long list of songs available to play in Harmonix’s Dance Central 2 aren’t the most kid-friendly ones you’d expect to see, however, in this day,  kids are exposed to these songs and worse on a regular basis. This game is good for the older kids and parents to get together and perhaps show off who has the better dance skills. Using the Kinect Sensor, up to two players can dance as a team or against each other. The difficulty level can be altered to make it enjoyable for younger kids to still have a blast, while being tuned to give young adults and parents some challenge.


Sesame Street: Once Upon A Monster

Most adult gamers should be familiar with Double Fine Productions. This developer was responsible for Costume Quest and Brutal Legend. Most everyone regardless of age has heard and watched Sesame Street at some point in their childhood. You might not think that the combination of Sesame Street and Double Fine would be a great match, but the outcome is a fun title for all members of the family, especially since it was designed to have parents (or older kids) play together with the youngest children.

Kinect Sensor

Both games mentioned above require the Kinect Sensor. Parents might feel as if the optional accessory is gimmicky for them, but that will change once you get the chance to use it. The Kinect does, in my opinion, the movement controls absolutely well, and without need of a controller in either hand. An added bonus for parents is that the Kinect is not just for playing family titles such as those listed above; it uses advanced technology that allows you to use your voice for commands during HD movies and other Xbox functions.


Sony PlayStation 3

Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One

Since the first entry in the Ratchet & Clank series was released in 2002, the dynamic team has made their way into the hearts of gamers all over. Fast forward to 2011, and the series is still going strong. It is likely that the same teenagers and young adults who played the first title have grown and had some kids. Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One is perfect for introducing kids to the series if they haven’t played before, while also being more of what gamers come to expect from the series. Four-player co-op means that unless you have a larger family, everyone will be able to play together.

LittleBigPlanet 2

Ah, one of my personal favorites of 2011. LittleBigPlanet 2 might have been released at the beginning of the year, but it is still a worthwhile title to play even to this day. Expanding on what made LittleBigPlanet a smash hit back in 2008, LBP2 offers the ability to create Sackbots and play different types of levels. The story mode is fun for all ages, and parents can work with their kids to create new stages that range from racing to puzzle genres. Even better, the latest “Special Edition” version of the game includes $35 of bonus content not included in the original release.

PlayStation Move Bundle

So, you still haven’t picked up Sony’s very own motion controller? While there are not as many titles that incorporate it as for the Wii, Sony’s PlayStation Move does work with a few good titles such as LittleBigPlanet 2. The main game of LBP2 might not use this motion control technology, but the Sackboy’s Prehistoric Moves that comes with the game offers ten levels in which a player can manipulate the environment with the Move controller. If all you decide to get is the PlayStation Move bundle, a game called Sports Champions is included. This game is fun to play for all ages. In addition, many Move games are fun games a family can play together.