Nerdvana Presents: Gifts for the Geeky – Xbox 360 edition

Gaming, Xbox 360

Yesterday I gave you some suggestions for Wii and Nintendo DS owners — they’re largely casual gamers. Xbox 360 fans are a more hardcore segment of the population, and accessories and cutesy games like Wii Music and Animal Crossing: City Folk just won’t cut it.

Gears of War 2One of the most stunning and visually impressive games of the year, Gears of War 2 is a tactical third-person shooter that is a must-own title. The original game is still one of the Xbox 360’s best and now Epic Games has fixed any problems it might have had and added a bunch of exciting extras like new weapons, “meat shield” and “dueling chainsaw” features, five-vs.-five online multiplayer and a more elaborate single-player campaign with lots of gameplay variety. ($60, rated M)

If your gamer already has it and wants more action, then he will want to check out Call of Duty: World at War, a first-person shooter that focuses on the waning days of World War II in the Pacific and Eastern European theaters. This fifth entry in the series is more mature and open-ended than its predecessors, and introduces a co-op mode. ($60, rated M)

Left 4 Dead box art

Another option, Left 4 Dead is a straight-up mutant-grinding FPS in the survival horror genre. It boasts some killer AI. ($60, rated M) If they’re not really into shooters, find out whether they have Mirror’s Edge — it’s an innovative and immersive gaming experience in which you play a foot messenger in a world where the government has clamped down on all communication. Weapons are a part of the game, but the real focus is on stealth and strategy. ($60, rated T)


A word about gamers:

We are an impatient lot. When faced with dwindling funds and a mountain of hot new releases, we will often take advantage of trade-in programs to get credit toward the latest video game. As such, we can be hard to buy for — you’re never sure whether we have a given title.

Many loved ones resort to gift cards for gamers — and that’s a fine idea. You can find out where they prefer to shop for games and voila! You’re set.

Another option is a gift card specifically for their gaming platform, such as Microsoft Points for Xbox Live users and Wii Points for Nintendo’s Wii Shop Channel.

Just make sure your beloved gamer is connected for such activity — if not, there’s your gift idea!

Thanks to Scott Kirchhofer and Chris “KeL” Adams for their ideas and contributions!

What’s hot?

Game Crazy, in a recent press release, lists these as the hot games for kids this season: Guitar Hero World Tour, Rock Band II, Mario Kart Wii and Dance Dance Revolution Hottest Party II. They also suggest accessories like battery packs, musical instrument controllers and racing wheels.

More Gifts for the Geeky: