Best games of 2012 and gift guide for the holidays

bestPeople are always surprised that most video games are not made for kids and according to the Entertainment Software Association the age of the average gamer is 30.  They should know, since they own and operate the E3 Expo in Los Angeles.  Buying video games isn’t like picking up a comic book or candy on your way home.  At around $60 each, the truth is that most kids just don’t have the disposable income to buy them on their own.  Video game consoles have been in the home for around 30 years now and have established themselves as a significant form of entertainment.

With that being said, I do have a short list of games for readers looking for games to buy children for the holidays.  The biggest thing for younger gamers over the last couple of years is the video game/toy crossover, Skylanders.  There is a new Skylanders game this year called Giants.  Along with that is a new line of toys.  If they have the game, new toys are a plus as they translate to new characters in the game.  Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two and Lego Batman 2: DC Superheroes are two other fun games for younger players and all three games mentioned are multi-platform and can be played by two players simultaneously.

020358bIn November, Nintendo released the new Wii U home console.  The system is backwards compatible with the original Wii system and uses the same remotes in addition to the tablet-like GamePad controller.  The standout games for the new system are Nintendo Land, New Super Mario Bros. U, and ZombiU.  These are the best exclusive games available now.  Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, Mass Effect 3, Assassin’s Creed 3, Batman: Arkham City, and Darksiders 2 are also available on the Wii U and worth consideration if not already owned on another system.

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The Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 are the heavyweights in console gaming right now and as such have the larger libraries.  Looking to get the biggest audience possible, publishers put their best efforts into games for these consoles.  The following is the RPGameX list of the best console games for 2012.

Assassin’s Creed 3 – Desmond finally leaves the Renaissance behind.

Borderlands 2 – It’s more of everything we loved about the first one.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 – Branching storylines are only one of the many changes

Far Cry 3 – Something like Fallout meets Dead Island with amazing storytelling

Final Fantasy XIII-2 – The story isn’t epic but the gameplay is a huge improvement

Halo 4 – Losing Bungie didn’t hurt Halo at all

Mass Effect 3 – Except for the very end, a really amazing Sci-Fi RPG shooter.

Sleeping Dogs – A pretty compelling story and great melee combat in a sandbox adventure.

The Walking Dead – A really well-told, modern take on the point and click adventure genre.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown – A game that successfully implements RTS mechanics on consoles.

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