Holiday Shopping Survival Guide: Best Gaming Deals for Black Friday!
In these hard times, buying gifts for loved ones is difficult, especially if you’ve blown your hard-earned cash on a few video games you couldn‘t resist buying for yourself. Hey, don’t judge me. If you’re like me and money is hurting worse than a Mike Tyson kidney punch, you need to work the system and pinch pennies. Saving us from gifting socks and lingering Halloween candy, I’ve compiled a holiday survival guide that’ll make you a holiday superstar instead of the creepy, broke relative.
Gaming Gifts Under $10
Alright. If you’re trying to get by spending less than $10 on gifts, you’re going to have to live with buying some mediocre games. Still, that’s better than nothing, and depending on who you‘re buying for, you might find the perfect gift. The best I’ve seen in this department are $7 games at Walmart on Black Friday. These are mostly Wii titles and old games in general, but that beats shopping in some grimy, back-alley black market.
The $10 Bin
Cut back on McDonald‘s for one day and you‘ve got yourself one present bought and paid for! For the most part, if you’re shopping in the $10 range, you can’t expect the latest and greatest games. But, that doesn’t mean you’re buying a dud. For example, through November 28, Best Buy has a slew of top-shelf games for dirt cheap. World of Warcraft: Battle Chest, which includes the WoW game and expansion packs can be a great gift especially with WoW: Cataclysm hitting stores in December. If PC games don’t work for you, try Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots for PlayStation 3 or Star Wars: The Force Unleased: Ultimate Sith Edition for Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3, which comes with extra missions to add value. Sure, there are newer games, but these all guarantee to please.
Walmart is boasting around 80 video games for $10 on Black Friday. Games like inFamous, Red Steel 2, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon 2, Prototype, and the God of War Collection just scratch the surface. With so many games at this price, you’re almost guaranteed to walk away with something! Just don’t be trampled by the stampede of like-minded spendthrifts.
One last stop you could try is Big Lots (provided there’s actually a store in your area). While they might not have the inventory of Best Buy or Walmart, they are offering a “Buy two get one free” for their $10 video games. Grab your snorkel and get game diving!
Gaming Deals for $15 - $40
Aside from a batch of games Best Buy is carrying for $17, most games in this section fall between the $30 to $40 range. However, it is definitely worth mentioning that Best Buy has Splinter Cell: Conviction for $17. Many of the other titles at this price point are available for cheaper at Walmart or elsewhere, so tread carefully.
Digging just a little deeper into the piggy bank will get you some of this year’s best games. Wal-mart dropped prices for Red Dead Redemption, Toy Story 3, Medal of Honor, NBA 2K11, and other great games to $30. For these you might have to elbow your way through other shoppers, but the ends justify the means. For any relative that loves goading you into wrestling, both Wal-mart and Best Buy are carrying WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2011 for $30. Adding five dollars to your budget will get you virtually any EA game from 2010. This includes The Sims 3, EA Sports MMA, NHL 11, Medal of Honor, and more.
For you big spenders out there, there are quite a few of this year’s best games at reduced prices. For $40 you can get your hands on Fallout: New Vegas, Halo: Reach, or Fable III at Best Buy. Need I say more? Okay, I will. For the same price, GameStop has Enslaved: Odyssey to the West. If you want to sacrifice some of your dusty games, GameStop is adding 25% extra trade-in credit for all games towards a purchase of Donkey Kong Country Returns.
Video Game Consoles
If you’re really feeling the holiday spirit, there are quite a few bundle deals packaging gaming consoles with games or additional controllers. Price points are all virtually the same: Xbox 360 bundles priced at $199 and PlayStation 3 bundles at $299. Best Buy includes three LEGO games with their Xbox 360 bundle, and their PS3 bundle comes with LittleBigPlanet, ModNation Racers, and a Blu-ray movie. Walmart includes Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and Mass Effect 2 with their Xbox 360 bundle. Their PS3 package includes Uncharted 2: Among Thieves and Medal of Honor.
As far as price reductions go, the best I’ve seen thus far goes to Walmart for its $89 Nintendo DS Lite. It’s pink, and you have to make it to the register by 11 a.m. on Black Friday, but maybe you could convince a cashier that the discount is for other colors as well. Good luck with that.
While you’re biting and clawing through the masses on Black Friday, remember why you’re willing to set up camp outside the retailer on Thursday night. It’s for family, or at least to save some serious cash while adding loads of cool games to your arsenal. Happy hunting!
John loves gaming and loves writing about games. He wants to become a known voice in the gaming community and a game designer one day.
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