16 Best Gifts For Gamers in 2018: The Ultimate List of Gift Ideas for Gamers
The holiday season is just around the corner and finding the right gift for your gamer significant other or a loved one is a struggle many are facing.
If that’s why you’re here, we laid out the perfect list of cool gifts for gamers they will surely love and appreciate!
Games will surely be the first (or second) thing that will come to mind. But choosing a game to get as a gift for a gamer boyfriend/girlfriend is a daunting task because:
- The game should be something they like.
- You have to make sure they don’t own the game yet.
- There might be different, sometimes confusing, versions, or “Editions” of the same title.
But how to know what games they like? Well, you could have listened last time they were ranting in Gamestop about that one trailer that kept playing on a loop. But that oddly specific event didn’t happen, then a good way to start this right is to check their Steam wishlist.
Even if you don’t get the game on Steam (or even PC), it still might give you a good idea for further research.
Their wishlist should be loaded with all the games they want and should give you many choices to choose from-- just make sure they don’t own the game yet. To verify, visit their profile and click on the “Games Owned” link.
If you don’t own a Steam account you can either create one for yourself, or you can ask them to use theirs so that you don’t mess it up (you could also help any shared gamer friends to assist if you want to keep things on the DL).
If you have a Steam account, head over to their profile and find where it says “wishlist”. Remember that you have to be friends on Steam to see their profile and their wishlist so just add them if you haven’t already. Naturally, this means you will need to know their Steam username.
Alternatively, you could just send them a Steam gift card, a PlayStation Network (PSN) gift card, an Xbox Live gift card, or a Nintendo eShop gift card, which we’ll cover below. You can also browse games at GoG or Origin.
Computer peripherals such as keyboards, mice, speakers, headphones, and even monitors, are among the items that will definitely improve a gamer’s experience.
However, choosing one won’t be easy, especially if you don’t know which specs are best for these peripherals. This is why we narrowed down the best for these respective peripherals below.
When it comes to monitors, there are really two “types”: ones that prioritize graphics and ones that prioritize performance and on-point responsiveness. When I say “types”, I mean it as a general, guiding philosophy since there are actually several different things you should know about displays. First being that monitors have different panels with unique qualities:
- IPS (In-Plane Switching) panels offer better graphics output and color reproduction.
- TN (Twisted Nematic) panels offer the fastest response time, which is the measure between when you press a button and the computer monitor reacts. This is measured in milliseconds.
- VA (Vertical Alignment) panels fall in between the two: they produce a slightly better picture than TN panels and generally have faster reaction times than IPS panels (though it’s not always the case). Note: there are way less VA options than the above 2.
You can read more about TN vs IPS vs VA if you’re not sure what type of panel to pick. However, as a general rule of thumb, if your loved one is using a low-end computer, or plays a lot of competitive games, then a TN monitor would likely be better. But if they generally prefer the pretty-pretty, shiny-shiny, then an IPS or VA might be better.
No matter the case, just know what matters to them and go from there. We have reviewed over 20 monitors and here are the best we found for each monitor panels:
- Best IPS Panel Monitor: ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q
- Best TN Panel Monitor: Acer Predator XB252Q
- Best VA Panel Monitor: Acer Predator Z35
The ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q is a 27” IPS monitor that has a fast refresh rate of 144Hz which can be configured to go up to 165Hz for a smoother experience. A 2K (2560x1440p) resolution monitor on top of an IPS panel will most certainly give your loved one a stunning graphics output when gaming.
Get them the 24.5” Acer Predator XB252Q if they prefer performance over graphics output. With a 1 millisecond response time and a whopping 240Hz refresh rate, this Full HD (1920x1080p) monitor will give them an extremely smooth, responsive experience.
Our VA pick is actually a bit special since it is an Ultrawide, curved 35” Acer Predator Z35. While it isn’t the best for competitive gaming (most online games don’t allow you to use the full width of the screen since it is a competitive advantage) it’d be a great pick for anyone that enjoys single-player gaming, or watching movies.
If none of these seem right, then we have a lot more monitors where these came from. If you’re not sure what size monitor to pick from that guide, then we can also help you find the best monitor size. 🙂
Everyone knows what a keyboard is, but we aren’t just talking about any keyboards here, we are talking about mechanical keyboards. If the gift receiver doesn’t have a mechanical keyboard with LED backlights, chances are they will appreciate this; even if they didn’t know they wanted it.
We’ve also reviewed a handful of keyboards here at WePC and these are the keyboards you should give as gifts for video game lovers:
Best Keyboard to Give as A Gift:
The Corsair K95 RGB Platinum is the best keyboard you can give to a loved on a new.
It’s equipped with a responsive Cherry MX Speed switch that’s ideal for gaming. Aside from the additional keys that can be mapped, it also has RGB lighting that can be fully customized. The wrist rest is sturdy yet comfortable and even has a magnetic wrist pad that can be easily removed for easy cleaning.
The Corsair K70 RGB is extremely similar to the K95 (minus the extra macro keys). So if they don’t really need the extra macro keys or is more into first-person shooter (FPS) games, this might be a good fit.
The Logitech G910 Orion Spark RGB is a more affordable alternative if you don’t want to spend almost $200 on a keyboard. It has an unique (yet still comfortable) build with a mobile phone dock that can accommodate mobile phones and tablets up to 7”.
This feature lets the user see both incoming text messages and calls when playing (great for that gamer that always forget to respond to you). This also lets them track the computer’s usage or change the song when they’re away from the computer.
4. Gaming Keypads
Gaming keypads are just that: keypads. They’re like mini-keyboards intended for use with one hand. Aimed at more serious and competitive gamers, gaming keypads let users play games more comfortably because they are made for the sole purpose of gaming-- nothing else.
If none of the below keypads seem promising, then you can check out our top 5 gaming keypads.
- The Premium: Razer Orbweaver Chroma Elite RGB
- The Minimalist: Razer Tartarus Chroma Expert RGB
- The Dead Serious MMORPG-er: Logitech G13 Programmable Gameboard
The Razer Orbweaver Chroma Elite RGB is the best among the bunch. The body is well-constructed and has a very smooth, premium feel to it. The Orbweaver also has 20 high-quality, tactile mechanical keys that gamers around the world are going crazy about. Oh, and it has fully customizable RGB lights; you can even color each key something entirely different!
The Razer Tartarus Chroma Expert RGB is a solid choice if they prefer a more silent profile. Unlike the Orbweaver, this has 17 membrane keys that give off a less-noisy tactile experience without compromising the premium benefits. The body, however, feels very similar to the Orbweaver.
We highly recommend the Logitech G13 if they are more into MMORPG games like World of Warcraft. This has 22 programmable keys that will surely come in handy for these types of games. It also has a small LCD display that you can use to display various statistics.
If they already have a mechanical keyboard, chances are they already paired this with a quality gaming mouse. But in case they haven’t already, get them a gaming mouse that will meet their personality or the games they play.
- Best Mouse for First-Person Shooter (FPS) Gamers: CORSAIR M65 Pro RGB
- Best All-Round Mouse: Razer Deathadder Elite
- Best Mouse for Massive Multiplayer Online (MMO) Gamers: Logitech G600
The CORSAIR M65 Pro RGB is great for FPS games thanks to its snipe button that helps you make precision shots in the heat of combat. And if they rage quit a lot, it’s also made out of a durable aircraft-grade aluminum chassis, so now you only need to worry about what’s on the receiving end of the mouse!
Plus, it has a weight-adjustment system to perfectly match your loved one’s desired mouse weight. If they fancy RGB lights, Corsair’s CUE software will give them nearly limitless color combinations; that sounds hyperbolic but it’s insane.
The Razer Deathadder Elite is a safe choice if you’re not sure what type of gamer they are. It is highly ergonomic, durable, and built with precision in mind. It also has RGB lighting that can be customized and mapped via Razer’s proprietary cloud-based driver software: Razer Synapse.
The Logitech G600 is the perfect choice for those that play MMOs like World of Warcraft, EVE Online, The Elder Scrolls Online, etc. These games often have you actively using 12 or more skills at a time, which is why its 16 remappable buttons make it so perfect for the job. It also comes with customizable RGB LED lights under each button.
6. Gaming Headsets
Quality gaming headsets not only let the player hear things that are hard to pickup with speakers-- like directional noises-- but also facilitate team work with their built-in mics. Popular games like PUBG, Fortnite, and Battlefield V need these accurate audio queues; surprisingly, hearing footsteps can make a huge difference.
Plus, these aren’t really expensive since you can get a quality gaming headset for less than $50 nowadays.
- Best PC Gaming Headset: HyperX Cloud Stinger
- Best Xbox One Headset: Turtle Beach Recon 50X
- Best Budget PS4 Headset: Logitech G430
The HyperX Cloud Stinger is the best sub-$50 PC gaming headset you can gift. It has a lot of features, but perhaps most important is the quality audio and a mic that has a really good audio pickup. It also has a steel slider, an easy-to-adjust volume controls located on the bottom of the right ear cup, a swivel-to-mute noise-cancellation microphone, and flexible 90-degree rotating ear cups.
If your loved one owns an Xbox One console, don’t waste your time and immediately get the go-to headphones for Xbox One-- the Turtle Beach Recon 50X. It’s light, comfortable, durable, has great mic pickup quality and a microphone that you can remove if you just want to listen to the game’s audio or you just want to listen to music.
You can also go with the Logitech G430 if you’re looking for the best budget PS4 headset to give to your loved one. Aside from the premium material, it also has great audio and mic pickup (thank God for the noise-cancelling feature).
7. Gaming Chairs
Sitting for hours on end can be uncomfortable, much more if you’re sitting in a crappy $20 desk chair. This is only exacerbated by desk work (like us writers!). This is why it's worth investing in the right chair.
Below are 3 of our favorite gaming chairs, but you can check out all 5 of our best gaming chairs to learn more about each of the below chairs (plus 2 more chairs!).
- Best Premium Gaming Chair: Herman Miller Embody Chair
- Best Racing Gaming Chair: Vertagear S-Line SL2000
- Best Console Gaming Chair: X Rocker 51259 Pro H3
The Herman Miller Embody Chair is one of the office chairs in the world. Don’t take it from the PC building website, take it from those that compare ergonomics. The Embody has a skeletal structure on the back that’s designed not only for a comfortable sitting experience but also for correcting bad sitting habits.
This chair has gone past merely providing a quality sitting experience and is now focused on enhancing one’s health. Now your loved one won’t be a hunchback with chronic back pain. It is worth noting, however, that the Embody is very pricey. So you might want to check out some more affordable gaming chairs.
The Vertagear S-Line SL2000 won’t beat out the Herman Miller Embody Chair-- we’re just being honest-- but this chair is much more likely to be in your (or anyone else’s) budget.
This chair provides a lot of the same features-- variety of color, lumbar and back support, etc.-- you’d come to expect from other popular racing chairs, like DXRacer Tank Series and AKRacing, but it doesn’t charge for brand name since they’re still making a name for themself.
The X Rocker 51259 Pro H3 is a great option for the console gamer in your life, whether they play in the living room or the gaming room for extended hours. This rocker style gaming chair for consoles is equipped with 4.1 surround sound and vibration motors that will immerse you into the game. If this chair is underwhelming, then we have reviewed other console gaming chairs.
8. VR Headset
Virtual reality is the newest hot craze in the world of gaming. If you have a VR capable gaming PC, it can take gaming to an entirely new level. Unlike a couple years ago when these things were extremely expensive, VR headsets are at least somewhat affordable.
There are only three prominent VR headsets you can get today, so which is the perfect Christmas gifts for gamers?
Among the three, the HTC Vive is the most expensive followed by the Oculus Rift and the PlayStation VR.
HTC Vive has better integration with Steam and superior technology over Oculus Rift. However, the VR landscape is still in its infancy, so if you’re thinking about getting one of these, then make sure to do some extra research.
PS VR is pretty simple since it’s only for the PS4 (you can use the PlayStation VR on a PC with the help of third party software, but it’s a huge pain.). As such, it’s hard to look at PS VR as being a direct competitor to the Vive and Rift.
With that in mind, we recommend the Vive for PC gaming and PS VR for the PS4. Sadly, the Xbox One and Nintendo Switch don’t have VR headsets.
Controllers are among the best, easiest gifts you can give to a gamer. Even if they play games using the conventional keyboard and mouse combo, there are games that are just better off played using a console controller-- like racing games and fighting games.
Even if they already have a controller, an extra can be useful (And if they don’t have a controller how are they even playing games?). For instance, if they’re going to be playing games with someone else-- like maybe you!-- then a second controller is a must have. Literally.
Best Controllers to Give as A Gift:
- Nintendo Joy Con
- Xbox Wireless Controller
- Xbox Elite Wireless Controller
- Xbox Adaptive Controller
- DualShock 4 Wireless Controller (PS4)
Nintendo Joy Cons are the Nintendo Switch’s controller. They can be used separately on both hands or latched on to a grip to have the traditional controller feel. Certain multiplayer games even allow each player to use one of the pair.
The Xbox One Wireless Controller is the Xbox One’s default controller, but is basically just an upgraded version of the Xbox 360 wireless controller. This has a more comfortable D-pad and a more sleek design. It is also very easy to set up on a Windows PC, like the Xbox 360, but this comes with a vast number of colors and designs to choose from.
Get them the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller if you want to give them a more premium controller (they’ll surely love this!). It has extra features such as 4 paddles on the back that can be mapped to various buttons.
There’s also the Xbox Adaptive Controller that we would highly recommend for people with limited mobility. It is a unified hub that helps make gaming more accessible. Every single button can be customized and mapped differently to make gaming possible and comfortable for a variety of players.
The DualShock 4 Wireless Controller for PlayStation 4 is arguably better than the Xbox One controller in a handful of aspects, like the fact that you can recharge it rather than needing AA batteries. The can also use a PS4 controller on a Windows PC with the help of DS4Windows, a 3rd party software.
If you’re looking for a more affordable list of gifts for gamers, there are a handful of gaming accessories they will surely love.
Gamers welcome gaming accessories because these things help improve a gamer’s overall experience in their own unique way. Plus, they’re a more affordable option, too!
Here are some of the gaming accessories that we recommend:
10. Gaming Mouse Pads
Gaming mice these days are powered with sensors that will show a more accurate performance if paired with the right gaming mouse pad. However, the volume of mouse pads means finding the right one can quickly become an exhaustive journey. So, we skipped the mainstream gaming mouse pads and went straight to the best gaming mouse pads:
- The Overkill: CORSAIR MM800 Polaris RGB Mouse Pad
- The Wide: Corsair Gaming MM300
- The Midpoint: Logitech G440
We highly recommend “The Overkill” CORSAIR MM800 Polaris RGB Mouse Pad if you’re down to give your loved one the best.
This 13.8 in by 10.2 in (350mm x 260mm) mousepad has a low-friction micro-texture surface for fast and controlled movement. The rubber backing also ensures that it stays in place. Plus, it has USB-powered LED lighting placed around the mousepad that can be customized with the help of Corsair’s proprietary software, CUE.
The Corsair Gaming MM300 is a really great option if you’re looking for a large gaming mouse pad for your loved one who prefers to use mice with lower DPI. And when I say large, I mean very large.
Measuring 36.6 in by 11.8 in (930mm x 300mm), this mouse pad can easily hold both your keyboard and mouse in place. This pad also has an anti-fray stitching surface and a solid rubber backing so it won’t slip around.
The 13.4 in by 11.2 in (340mm x 280mm) Logitech G440 is-- according to Logitech-- tuned for Logitech sensors, so if the giftee owns a Logitech mouse, like the one we featured in Mouse section, then this could be a great option. Regardless, any gaming mouse with a high DPI sensor will still benefit from the G440 thanks to its hard surface and polymer core that provides a very low friction experience.
11. Mouse Bungee
I know what you’re thinking: what the heck is a mouse bungee? Well, it holds the mouse’s cord off of the desk so that it doesn’t get caught on things, or fray over time. Mouse bungees are generally aimed at hardcore gamers, although others might find it useful.
If you think a mouse bungee is a perfect gift for your loved one, consider our personal picks below:
- The Entrant: MECO(TM) Mouse Bungee
- The Mid-Range Bungee: aBell Mouse Bungee
- The Premium: Cougar Bunker Mouse Bungee
The MECO(TM) Mouse Bungee is a great entry-level mouse bungee that costs less than $8 on Amazon. However, you get what you pay for: a very cheap build and feel. Moreover, it isn’t heavy enough to stay in place when you move the mouse far.
For most, this is good enough, but if your loved one is a competitive gamer, perhaps the two below will give the experience they need.
The aBell Mouse Bungee is a great gift to someone who is into competitive eSports first-person shooter games. This is well-constructed-- it’s made of ABS + Silicone + stainless steel-- and weighted to keep it from moving around, even if you move your mouse to the edges of its range.
The Cougar Bunker Mouse Bungee is the perfect option for gamers that jerk their mice around. This bungee itself is like a tank with its industrial, metal body. Moreover, unlike most bungees, it has a powerful suction cup keeps it in place-- it can lift a small table-- instead of relying on a little heft and rubber feet.
12. Wrist Rest
Whether you have a gamer boyfriend or a gamer girlfriend (or they’re somewhere in between), if your loved one spends a lot of time at the computer, then a wrist rest might be a good idea (it can also save you money on carpal tunnel surgery later down the line, theoretically).
- Wrist Rest for Mouse and Keyboard: Gimars Memory Foam Set
- Wrist Rest for Mouse: VicTsing Mouse Pad with Gel Wrist Rest
- Wrist Rest for Keyboard: Belkin WaveRest Gel Wrist Pad
The Gimars Memory Foam Set actually comes with 2 pads: one for each wrist. Since gamers usually use both keyboard and mouse when gaming, we recommend this set.
This 17 x 3.4 x 1 inch keyboard wrist pad and 6.3 x 3 x 1 inch mouse wrist pad fits not only most computers but wrists, too. The ergonomically-designed groove and comfy memory foam releases the tension on your shoulders and elbows when gaming for hours on end.
If they already have a mouse wrist rest or a keyboard wrist rest, then get them either the Belkin WaveRest Gel Wrist Pad or the VicTsing Mouse Pad with Gel Wrist Rest, respectively.
The Belkin WaveRest Gel Wrist Pad has a lightweight yet durable build that will last for years. It also has a comfortable cushion to support both of your wrists when typing.
The VicTsing Mouse Pad with Gel Wrist Rest also has an anti-slip rubber base to ensure that it stays in place. It’s Lycra covering helps improve tracking movements and gliding, perfect for most gaming mice. It’s also Restriction of Hazardous Substances or RoHS certified so it’s ensured to be safe for use.
13. Internal Hard Drive
Whether your loved one plays on a console or PC, a hard drive is always useful. Games are becoming larger and larger as the years go by, so extra storage is always welcome.
It’s great to have an HDD or an SSD for gaming. Both of these offer distinct features such as space and performance, respectively. But which one should you get as a gift?
- Hard Disk Drive for Desktop Gaming: Seagate 3TB BarraCuda
- Solid State Drive for Desktop Gaming: Intel Solid-State Drive 750 Series
- Internal Hard Drive for Console: Seagate FireCuda (2TB)
The Seagate 3TB BarraCuda is the best hard drive for gamers who want to install and play all the games they buy during Steam sales. It is also a perfect choice for those who do content creation on the sides.
But if performance is what matters more, the Intel Solid-State Drive 750 Series will be the more suitable gift-- that is if you are willing to spend $600 on a gift for your loved one.
This offers insane speeds that are up to 4x faster than a regular SSD (Solid State Drive). And considering the fact that SSD’s are ten times faster than a regular mechanical hard drive, the price is… sort of justified.
If they play on a PS4, a 2TB Seagate FireCuda will be more than enough. Moreover, since it is a hybrid drive (part HDD, part SSD) it can actually improve your load times.
14. External Hard Drive
If they travel a lot, perhaps a portable external hard drive would be more appropriate!
Gamers who love to game on-the-go will surely appreciate this more than an internal hard drive. Moreover, it can more easily be used with several devices. So, here are our personal recommendations:
- Best Seller External Hard Drive: WD Elements Portable External Hard Drive
- External Solid State Drive: Samsung T5 Portable SSD
We specifically recommend the WD Elements Portable External Hard Drive for both PC and console users.
This is Amazon’s number 1 best seller in the External Hard Drive category with over 1,400 reviews. Any gamer will appreciate having one, especially since the 2TB version can hold over 50 games. But if you think 2TB isn’t enough for the giftee, then a 3TB and 4TB version is also available.
If performance (like fast transfer speeds) is more important than the capacity, then Amazon’s number 1 External Solid State Drive, Samsung T5 Portable SSD, might better suit their needs. This is also much smaller than the external HDD above. In fact, you can easily fit this in the palm of your hand.
Consoles and Gift Cards
Get your loved one a console! If they already own one-- or only own a PC-- then get them a different console! But which among the different consoles should you get them?
1/ Regular Console Gaming:
2/ Handheld Gaming:
You can choose from the different PS3 models out there but we personally recommend you get your loved one either the PS4 Slim or the PS4 Pro. These are the latest and will definitely be treasured in the next year or 2, or until a new one breaks out.
If they already own a PS4, you can get them either the Xbox One S or the Xbox One X. It’s worth noting that often the Xbox One is cheaper than a PS4, but that many feel the PS4 has a superior catalogue of games.
If you’re still uncertain about these consoles there’s more to consider when comparing the PS4 and Xbox One.
There are also handheld gaming devices for the busy gamers out there: the PS Vita and Nintendo 3DS.
The PS Vita is graphically superior, but has an inferior catalog since publishers never really supported it, including Sony. However, there are still some decent games on it, like Persona 4 Golden, Sword Art Online, and Tearaway.
The PS Vita is also more powerful, so it can be used for other media functions, which is a verbose way to say “watch Netflix”.
The Nintendo 3DS doesn’t have great graphics by any means, but its huge library of great titles proves that graphics don’t really matter that much. Like its predecessor, it uses the clam shell design with 2 screens.
While many might say it is aimed more at children with games like Pokemon, that’s not all it has to offer, which games like Super Smash Bros, Resident Evil: Revelations, and Fire Emblem Awakening prove.
Last, but not least, the Nintendo Switch. This is both a console and a handheld at the same time since you can dismount it and take it on the go. While this console is a few years younger than the PS4 and Xbox One, Nintendo has done a great job supporting it with titles like The Legend of Zelda: The Breath of the Wild, Mario Odyssey, and Octopath Traveler. The young, yet large install base has also meant there’s been a constant influx of ports, as well.
16. Gift Cards
Gift cards might feel like a cop out, but sometimes there’s nothing better than giving your loved the gift of options. Instead of having to go through all the hassle to find what games they like to play, give them gift cards instead!
- PlayStation: PlayStation Network
- Xbox: Xbox Live
- Nintendo: Nintendo eShop
- Steam: Steam
- You should get them a PlayStation Network gift card if they play on a PlayStation console.
- An Xbox Live gift card is what you should get if they play on an Xbox console.
- A Nintendo eShop gift card will fit their wallet if they play on a Nintendo console.
- A Steam gift card will gift well if they play games on a PC.
17. Gaming Merchandise
If a game becomes very popular, gaming merchandise follows.
You can find tee’s, hoodies, bobbleheads, action figures, keychains, posters, arts, USB chargers, backpacks, coffee holders, and more, that are inspired by popular games. If you have an idea what they like, head over to Amazon or your nearest gaming shop!
What’s Your Pick?
And there you have it! We hope our list of the best gifts for gamers has been a great help.
Which among the items on our list did you pick as a gift for your loved one (or yourself)? Are there any other great gift ideas you have that we should include? Tell us down the comments! We’d love to hear from you!