«

»

Gaming Age Holiday Gift Guide 2022


With the end of 2022 right around the corner, the team at Gaming Age wanted to put together a Holiday Gift Guide featuring some great gift ideas for friends, family, and of course fellow gamers.

This year, we have included a variety of gaming accessories, comics, gizmos, gadgets, figures and much more. So, without further ado, here are a few gift suggestions for the 2022 holiday season! Stay tuned for updates, as we plan on adding to the list during the season.

Read on!

Dustin

Action Figure Collectors: NECA Universal Monsters x Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles line – $44.99

While NECA has had the TMNT license for quite a while, putting out faithful recreations of the popular 80’s and 90’s cartoon of my youth, along with a Turtles in Time line, and more recently capitalizing on the classic Mirage Studio’s comics, I’d argue that their newer Universal Monsters mash-up is their best yet. Based on popular movie monsters like Frankenstein’s Monster, The Mummy, The Bride of Frankenstein, and more, this line meshes your classic TMNT line-up with the iconic movie monsters from Universal in some pretty fantastic ways, with unique sculpts that squeeze in a ton of detail that’ll make it hard for collector’s to not bust these guys out of their packaging and display on their shelves.

The other plus is that this particular line-up is essentially complete at this point, and not that difficult to find. While I actively collect the cartoon and film line-ups, they can often be frustrating to find in stores, being exclusive to Target and Wal-Mart. The Universal Monsters line is not quite as restrictive, and is available in both of those stores but also readily available online via shops like Entertainment Earth and Big Bad Toy Store. This makes it a bit easier to obtain the full line, and outside of needing to wait for pre-orders on out of stock items, it’s pretty feasible to obtain Leo, Donatello, Mikey, Raph, April and Splinter. Any or all of these figures would make great gifts for TMNT fans, and will absolutely stand out among any TMNT collection.

 

Comic/Superhero Fans: Punisher Vol. 1: The King of Killers Book One – $10.99/$24.99 for Kindle & comiXology/Paperback

While it’s gonna be hard to top the classic Garth Ennis / Steve Dillon run on Marvel’s The Punisher, I’d say writer Jason Aaron (Southern Bastards) is off to a good start so far. It’s a new, interesting take on Frank Castle, who is essentially given control of The Hand in order to carry out his never-ending war on crime, while The Hand is clearly attempting to manipulate The Punisher into doing their bidding. It also explores Frank’s history, going back to not only his childhood but his early life with wife Maria, something that hasn’t been explored a great deal in recent years. It also does a great job of not going overboard in attempting to humanize Frank, exploring his past in a way that shows he is, without a doubt, pretty messed up.

This first volume, which collects issues 1 through 6 of the ongoing series, is up for pre-order on Amazon now and hits December 6th, making a pretty perfect gift for any comic fan in your family.

 

Benny

Xbox Gamers: Hex Gaming Xbox Ultra Controller – $179.99

I’ve grown used to having mixed experiences with 3rd party controllers, but over the years companies have put much more TLC into them and making them very comparable to the 1st party and in some cases, even Better. This is the case for me with the Hex Gaming Ultra X. Where many controllers bulk up in size, this one focuses on comfort, functionality and efficiency all while keep the profile slim. While this control is designed for Pro Gamers in Mind, this can be a great gift for that gamer that plays a lot and wears their controls down.

Like many pro controllers it also includes 4 remappable back buttons as well as 8 in 1 interchangeable trigger mechanics. This model also includes swappable thumb sticks with three styles to choose from. It’s also wireless and you can create your own from the website. These start at $179.99.

 

For your Portable Speaker Needs: Plantronics Poly Sync 20 Bluetooth Speaker – $109.99

Bluetooth speakers are one of those gifts and you will usually see given at a White Elephant or Secret Santa in a tech environment. They are usually cheap and end up not being used for a long time due to quality. If you have an audiophile, this speaker is something that provides a great variety of depth, tone, and clarity for a great price. It has a sleek rectangular design which breaks away from the usual circular speakers I’ve seen everywhere I go, even Five Below.

You can get this speaker on Amazon for $109.99 and from experience with Plantronics, they make solid audio-based products and nice to see something out side of the traditional headset I use of theirs.

 

Old School Anime Fans: Jada Toys Anime Hollywood Rides Featuring Robotech – $27.99

For the fans of early day anime from the mid to late 80’s. Jada has released 1:24 scale Die-Cast vehicles that are themed for the show and includes a mini figure of two of the main characters from the “Macross Saga” Rick Hunter and Roy Fokker. Each car is a 2020 Toyota Supra which has the paint and deco of both their respective Veritch Fighters.

This is a great nostalgia gift for an old school fan that may have loved the show growing up and not necessarily a toy collector. I know many people that enjoy a Funko Pop or two of their favorite franchise and Robotech is one that does not get a lot of merch, so this is a great 2022 release.

 

TMNT Figure Collectors: The Loyal Subjects TMNT BST AXN Arcade Game Action Figures – $19.99

Who doesn’t love some Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in figure form? Especially with a pixel deco based on the original arcade classics from the 90’s. These figures are 1:15 scale and have 31 points of articulation so you can display in various poses and relive the arcade days of yesteryear.

You can get all 4 turtles with this paint deco design exclusively at Gamestop for $19.99 each. Most of us loved at least one turtle, and that one could be that special retro/gaming gift.

 

Competitive Switch Gamers: PDP REMATCH Wired Controller for Nintendo Switch – $24.88

There are a lot of kids that I’ve seen gravitate to the Switch for games like Minecraft, Among Us and Fortnite. This series of controllers sport a variety of Nintendo characters like Mario, Link, Luigi and Animal Crossing’s Tom Nook. These have a nice addition of mappable paddle buttons along the back of the controller, which I’m going to enjoy.

You can plug in any 3.5 wired headset into the control and use for online chat as well. The various character themes allow for a flexible for all kinds of Nintendo Switch fans. These are available in various retailers for $27.99

 

Arcade Football Fanatics: NFL Blitz Legends Arcade1Up – $499

A Classic arcade style football classic comes home thanks to our friends at Arcade1Up.

Twenty-five years after the original release, NFL Blitz is back with NFL Blitz Legends by Arcade1Up, ($599.99) an at-home arcade machine featuring hundreds of the game’s greatest players including Jerry Rice, Dan Marino, Deion Sanders and more.

Hail Mary’s, interceptions, game-changing tackles, and touchdowns – NFL Blitz Legends scores big with sports fans and gamers alike.

 

For that special “Office” Gift: Funko “The Office” Advent Calendar – $59.99

Pun fully intended! Whether you have a White Elephant, Secret Santa or any holiday party with gift exchanges, Funko’s “The Office” Advent Calendar would be a hit.

Coming with 24 pint size figures featuring many show favorites like “Dwight”, Jim, and the man himself “Michael Scott”.

 

For the FNAF Fans: Funko Pop! Snaps: Five Nights at Freddy’s Playset – $34.99

Five Nights at Freddy’s is a a franchise that is becoming well known for the variety of merchandise, especially from Funko. These new “SNAPS!” figures bring the fun of the known swappable figure parts of the traditionally FNAF figures, but in a tiny more “Funko-like design with removable faceplates. Behind these are some creepy faces, even a Horror Dad would be proud of. I know I am.

 

Matthew

Retro Handheld Gamers: Retroid Pocket 3+: – $149.99

Thanks to the Steam Deck, there’s been a resurgence of handhelds over the past year, which has warmed the heart of this lonely inhabitant of Vita Island. And while none have quite matched the combination of performance and price of the Steam Deck, there are quite a few intriguing options out there if your budget is a little lower, led by the Retroid Pocket 3+. As someone who bought the Retroid Pocket 3 just a few months ago, it was a little painful to see its successor come out so quickly — but not too painful, since the 3+ is only $149 plus shipping.

For that price you get a sleek, pocketable system that can easily play everything prior to the PS2 and GameCube, and that can play a pretty hefty chunk of those libraries too if you follow the excellent guides from Retro Game Corps. Given the speed at which these Chinese companies put out new handhelds, it’s quite likely that we’ll be talking about something even more powerful by this time next year, but for this year, the Retroid Pocket 3+ is an awfully enticing proposition

 

Super Mini Handheld Fun: FunKey S – $68

As much as I love handhelds (see above), let’s be honest: you probably don’t want to be lugging them around everywhere for just a few minutes of playing during breaks at school or at work. The FunKey S solves that problem by being so small you can fit it on your keychain.

It may not be a system that you’d want to play for hours on end, but if you’ve ever wanted to kill a few minutes downtown at work with a quick Mario Kart race, a short Pokémon battle, or almost literally any other game from the NES through PS1 era (of which you own a legal back-up, naturally), this is the perfect solution.

 

Stan

Insane Transformers Fans: Robosen Transformers Elite Optimus Prime: – $699

One part remote control Peterbilt 379 Cab, 1 part remote control robot, 100% conversation starter. Robosen’s iteration of THE Autobot leader (Sorry, Rodimus!) certainly will turn heads and have people questioning the buyer’s fiscal responsibility. However for the recipient, whether they be an adult who was old enough to have caught the original run of the cartoon or someone who’s just getting into the long running franchise, they will be treated to something that will make them the envy of the office or the playground.

Powered by a mobile app, use it to switch between robot and vehicle mode, navigate it through your environment with it’s on screen controls, or have it perform one of the many pre-programmed poses (be it a recreation of a classic scene from the 80s cartoon or something more modern like the “superhero” pose, hell Optimus can even get down and give you a full rep of push ups!). For those that aren’t satisfied with what’s provided, program your own unique movements with their block-style programming language or download user generated movements that others have uploaded to their servers. My only other piece of advice, grab the extended warranty…because something as impressive as this needs to be protected no matter the cost!

 

NBA Fans/TCG Players: FLEX NBA TCG Game$49 for a Starter Set

I’ll say a lot of things about Benny Rose. One of them is that he’s a good father, often willing to impoverish himself just to make sure his son gets yet another Friday Night at Freddy’s toy that he’ll get tired of the following day. But compared to Sequoia Games’ Daniel Choi, Benny might as well have gone for a pack of smokes ages ago. A seasoned trading card player who passed on his passion to his son, he found the TCG space was severely lacking in games featuring real sports. Looking to correct this market imbalance, he crafted a game system which would eventually become the Flex system. Daniel built a team, refined the product and got the NBA to sign up as a licensor.

Flex NBA is unlike any TCG found in the market, featuring hexagonal pieces dubbed the “Flexigon”, it’s sturdier than your standard trading card, features AR functions when paired with the Flex NBA app and the Flexigons are upgradeable, potentially making each one unique. While the game doesn’t quite mirror the game of basketball, it does draw from the flashier aspect of the game. Do you love it when your favorite player posterizes a defender during a sick dunk? It is one of your favorite memories of the sport when Michael Jordan juked out Byron Russell to hit the game winner at the NBA Finals? This game can recreate those moments and more! Select your roster and use your players’ abilities to whittle down the opposing players’ confidence points. The first team to run out of players loses. You can also collect and use FX tokens to dominate or turn the tides of any match.

Sequoia Games is in this for the long haul, partnered with not just with the NBA, but also the NBA Players Association., Flex NBA will be able to draw on nearly the entire player roster to have ever hit the hardwood. Steph Curry, he’s got a Flexigon, Larry Bird, it’s a possibility, even you (if you managed to get drafted into the NBA)! We’ve already seen some legends adorn the Flexigons such as the trio of Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond, and Chris Mullen, collectively known as Run TMC. If basketball isn’t a sport for you, that’s ok because Sequoia got’s another shape that might pique your interest, what’s the one that’s got 8 sides?  Either way don’t miss out on a chance to get in on the ground floor of a deep game/collectible market with Flex NBA and the FLEX NBA TCG Game.

 

Switch Players: Fixture Gaming Fixture S1 Switch Mount$34.99

I’ve always stated my indifference to the Switch’s Joy-Con controllers. Unless required (I’m looking at you Switch Sports), I will always default to the Pro Controller for any play session with Nintendo’s hybrid console. However using this setup will require some sort of surface to place the Switch Tablet, but with Fixture Gaming’s line of Switch mounts, you can even do what I do…play on the Switch while riding subway with my Pro Controller (well until I realize I’m making myself a giant target to be sucker punched and have my stuff stolen and immediately put it back into my bag). While most mounts use spring loaded clips to clamp onto the tablet itself, designer Austin Stark engineered the Fixture Switch mount to use the Joy-Con rails itself to affix it to the mount. This leaves the USB-C port free, allowing you to charge your device while playing it. The mount can also act as a stand for your console giving you more viewing angles than the kickstand that is attached to the tablet. For the gamer on the go, Fixture also offers a clam shell-style carrying case that’s designed specifically for the mounted setup, has a pocket for your accessories and has a slotted flap that can store 10 Switch game cards. Make your Pro Controller part of your portable Switch setup with the Fixture S1 Switch Mount (OLED Switch owners can get the S2 mount, Lite owners…they got nothing for you).

 

Steam Deck Players: Deckmate System$15 (Grip), $29 (Bundle)

If you own a Steam Deck, you’re literally assaulted with a plethora of accessories from docks, skins, kickstands and cases. But separated from the chaff, one of the companies I decided to spend my money on to accessorize my Steam Deck was Deckmate. Utilizing adhesive pads and screws to provide additional support, the Deckmate system allows you to mount your Steam Deck to walls, VESA monitor mounts and even mount accessories such as battery packs to your Deck to lengthen your game time. Removing your deck is as simple as pushing down against the spring loaded locking mechanism, angle your deck and then lift it out of the mount.

The team is so confident in their offering that they provide the entire system’s 3D files for free for those who have access to 3D printing to make their own pieces. The Deckmate Grip’s physical profile is so compact that it doesn’t hinder the compatibility with some docks, but if you do have a dock that doesn’t vibe with the grip, you can alternately use the Deckmate Adapter to ensure harmony amongst your accessories. So if you know someone who is an owner of Valve’s portable computing wunderkind, the Deckmate system is definitely something to consider for them!

 

Brendan

Cat Lover PlayStation Gamers: Stray iam8bit Exclusive Edition – $44.99

The purrrrrrrfect title for animal lovers and players whose fast twitch muscles aren’t as developed. Stray charmed gamers with its feline protagonist as well as the human-like robots that dwell in the darkened domed city. Its simple controls and captivating narrative won’t wear out its welcome (Fleet footed players can technically complete the game in under 2 hours!), so it’s the perfect gift for those looking for a narrative experience but don’t want to be bogged down with . Because you can’t exactly give a gift card and expect the recipient to buy the game as intended, Developer BlueTwelve Studio and iam8bit are offering physical editions of Stray exclusively at the latter’s online portal.

Packaged in your standard blue Blu-Ray case, this tangible edition also comes with art cards depicting our good kitty and the various environments it finds itself in and if you splurge on the exclusive edition, your copy will come with a matte black slipcase, a 14.4” x 24” and a patch just like the ones the cat will acquire during it’s adventure!

 

Comic Fans: Invincible and Omni-Man Deluxe Action Figures (Whatnot Tyler Kirkham Exclusive Edition) – $24.99

The family that fights each other…stays together? Ok, maybe that’s not how that quote goes…but man was it tough love when Invincible took on Omni-Man at the end of season 1 of Invincible (now airing on Amazon Video).

Now you can recreate the scene through the wonders of figure photography! Sporting 16 points of articulation, you can also recreate other scenes from the series such as when the duo did father and son bonding by playing a little catch (A baseball and gloves are packed with Invincible) or the time Omni-Man bailed out Invincible and the Teen Team after they got overwhelmed during the 3rd Flaxan Invasion (Omni-Man’s accessories are a cinder block and a disembodied Flaxan arm).

If you’re one of those people that never let your figures breathe, the box features fantastic art from artist Tyler Kirkham!

 

Tyler

PC Gamers: CLX RA Gaming PC 

The CLX RA Gaming PC is at the top of my list, because it should sit at the top of any PC gamer’s wishlist. The company offers a plethora of options when it comes to building a gaming PC, from budget friendly pre-built options to bank busting customs rigs that will reach peak performance without breaking a sweat. The rig that I was fortunate enough to check out boasted a custom water cooled RTX 3090 which was capable of handling everything I could throw at it. In addition to top of the line performance, the team at CLX makes every effort to include everything you could need for your PC, as well as offers some of the most aesthetically appealing builds on the market today.

Couple these factors with their incredibly simple build process online that helps walk you through what you need, and their top notch customer service and warranty options, I won’t ever use another company for custom PC builds again. If you have the budget for a truly fantastic gaming PC that will last you for years, look no further than the CLX RA Custom Gaming PC.

 

PC Gamers: LucidSound LS100X Gaming Headset – $99.99

After going hands on with the stellar LucidSound LS50X last year, I was thrilled to get the chance to check out the LS100X this year. The LS100X has toned back some of the premium features that the LS50X had, but delivers an equally competent headset with arguably better sound quality at half the cost. The frame itself is lighter and more streamlined, which does definitely leave it feeling “cheaper”, but as soon as you put it on you won’t be bothered with that at all.

The LS100X is one of the most comfortable headsets I have ever used, with tall earcups to fit giant eared galoofs like myself. The sound quality is solid, as good as you could ever want from a $100 headset. Capable of pairing with the Xbox Series consoles, as well as PC via the same USB adapter or Mobile via Bluetooth, the LS100X is an all purpose headset that can cover your audio needs at home and on the go. Boasting up to 72 hours of Game Mode use on a single charge, or 130 hours of Bluetooth connectivity, the LS100X can last for quite a long time, and charging is as simple as plugging it in with the provided USB-C cable. A removable microphone, distinct audio dials for game audio and chat balancing, as well as 3 different EQ modes all add to the package, and make the LS100X my headset of choice for 2022.

 

Xbox Gamers: PowerA Spectra Infinity Enhanced Wired Controller – $39.99

If you know me, you know that I love PowerA products. They offer a huge variety of options across all facets of gaming, with fantastic budget friendly options that can outperform the pricier choices. The Spectra Infinity controller falls right in line with their existing products, offering a controller that feels nearly identical to the standard Xbox controller but offering an impressive array of RGB lighting and programmable rear buttons and adjustable triggers not unlike that of the Elite Controllers. While it is wired, the cord provided is 10 feet long and can easily be switched out for a longer one if necessary. Couple all of these features with an attractive design, and even more attractive price at $40, the Spectra Infinity Enhanced Wired Controller is an easy buy for the gamer on your list.

 

Console Gamers: PowerA Controller Docking Stations – $28.99

Don’t forget about charging your controllers! PowerA offers efficient and affordable docking stations for all of the consoles on the market right now. Their dual charging station for the Xbox controllers comes with battery packs and rear plates to allow the charger to work, which is a huge bonus.

Their Nintendo Switch licensed Joy-Con charging station is great as well, especially for households with 4+ Joy-Cons for a single system. With no way to charge extra Joy-Cons aside from pulling the two off of your docked console and putting the dead ones on to charge, having a charging station can be a huge time saver and a convenient addition to any household.

 

Borderlands Fans: Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands – $29

What would you get if you took the tried and true Borderlands formula and added in a whole new fantasy realm and placed the setting firmly within that realm while also adding in elements of tabletop games like D&D and also setting a fan favorite side character as the main protagonist?!? *Whew*. You would get Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, and you would get my favorite Borderlands game outside of Borderlands 2. Tiny Tina’s is a game I had initially SKIPPED after being somewhat turned off by Borderlands 3. Upon preparing for this end of year list and gift guide however, I got my hands on a copy and decided to give it a go. I have not stopped playing it since!

Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands might just feel like a re-skinned main entry on the surface, but the hilarious tabletop elements and endless in-jokes and quests elevate it above that surface-level comparison. The gameplay itself remains largely the same, but “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” seems like an incredibly apt proverb for the Borderlands series. The gameplay is as good as it has ever been, which has always been one of the keys to the success of the series. With how lukewarm I was on Borderlands 3, it was an absolute thrill to get to love Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands.

 

Streamers: Loupedeck Live S – $179

The Live S is the most simplified Loupedeck console yet, designed for all types of streamers. It comes equipped with the same software as the Loupedeck Live and CT, so users of their platform looking to upgrade will be able to transition seamlessly. They have made some huge improvements in terms of comfort and usability, from the angle of the stand to the quantity of dials and buttons, all based on feedback from users. It has a touch panel arranged in a grid of three by five buttons, but can be expanded by up to 14 pages and activated with a simple swipe. Designed with 15 touch buttons, two dials, and four analogue buttons, any conceivable action that arises in everyday streaming can be custom assigned based on user preference. The Live S also included native software integrations that support popular streaming tools like Twitch, OBS, Streamlabs, or Voicemod. Plus, optional plugins for creative programs like Adobe Photoshop, Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro and integrations for additional creative work. You have full control over the audio and lighting with freely assignable dials for precise adjustments to volume, backlighting and more, as well as dial push function for mic muting. The Loupedeck is a must have piece of gear for any streamer, and comfortably priced at $179.

 

Clean Freaks: Dreo Macro Max S Air Purifier – $220

If there is anything we have learned over the past several years, it’s that there is no such thing as air that is “Too clean”. To that end, Dreo has introduced an affordable, convenient air purifier for anyone out there looking to clean up the air in their room. Equipped with a 3-Stage H13 true HEPA carbon filter, designed to eliminate bacteria and viruses from your air, there is no better way to keep your house clean this holiday season. On top of the health benefits of cleaner air, the high-efficiency pelletized activated carbon will absorb bad odors, formaldehyde, and other volatile organic compounds, keeping your air feeling and smelling it’s cleanest. At $220, the Dreo Air Purifier isn’t cheap, but it is priced very well in comparison to competing products that don’t perform nearly as well.

 

3D Photographers: Kandao QooCam Ego 3D Camera – $370

If you have ever looked at an image and thought to yourself “Man, I wish this picture was 3D”, your wish has been granted! The QooCam Ego is the World’s first 3D camera designed for instant immersion. A detachable magnetic 3D viewer allows you to instantly relive your 3D photos and see how they are turning out without the need for a VR headset. Boasting 37 PPD (Pixel per degree) and smooth 60 FPS (Frames per second) when recording video, life has never looked quite as good as it does with the Ego 3D. A niche product for sure, priced at $370, this gift certainly isn’t going to be for everyone. But if you have a photographer on your list, or someone interested in converting or sharing photos in VR, this might just be the perfect surprise gift!