Top Ten must-have games for Christmas

Christmas is only two months away and for a billion-dollar industry such as videogames, that’s great news. Although we have seen some really excellent games being released throughout the year, publishers generally save the best for last.

A screenshot of Electronic Arts' Battlefield 3 (image: EA)

We have compiled a list of ten games that should definitely be in every gamer’s Christmas stocking. In no particular order, the games listed below are all being released before the end of the festive season and we think they are the best of the bunch.

Battlefield 3

The franchise has been going strong for a very long time, and the third Battlefield title is one of the most anticipated releases of the year. For the first time in the Battlefield history, the traditionally online-only FPS will also have a single player element. Developed by DICE, the game is sure to push the boundaries in graphics and gameplay.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

Also billed as one of the biggest releases of the year, many players have come to love the fast-paced action and combat carnage, coupled together with a strong single player plot. The FPS title will once again also feature a massive multiplayer section, which has just gone from strength to strength over the years.

Assassin’s Creed Revelations

Assassin’s Creed stole the hearts and minds of many players, and for this iteration Ubisoft is doing something different. For the first time in the franchise history, gamers will get to play as all three characters from the previous games. The historically-inspired title is sure to live up to all the expectations, with better graphics and more stealth gadgets.

Need for Speed: The Run

The Need for Speed franchise races back all the way to 1994, and without fail, the games have just become better and better. Although the franchise has seen a number of changes in the past, Electronic Arts has done something really special for this one. The Run will be the first time where players will actually be able to get out of their vehicles and…umm, run. The story puts the player in a million-dollar race for their lives, so taking their chosen cars across the US, it’s a race for life and death (and on the odd occasion, on feet).

WWE 2012

The WWE franchise is one of the most successful franchises in South Africa, and it’s got good reason to be. Although there are other wrestling games on the market, none of them come close to the action and officially licensed wrestlers that players love. With an overhauled gameplay experience and new broadcast TV presentation, WWE 2012 is sure to be the best wrestling game for a long time.

Silent Hill Downpour

Ramping up the horror this Christmas, gamers will once again have to venture into the nightmarish town of Silent Hill, where strange and awful things happen. Playing as prison inmate Murphy Pendleton, the new surroundings will deliver mind-bending puzzles, horrific creatures and otherworld terrors. The storyline will leave gamers shivering on the couch, as they will only be able to defend themselves with whatever objects they can find. Fight or flight is about to get a new meaning.

Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3

What Christmas list would be complete without a good fighting game thrown into the mix? Marvel vs Capcom has mesmerised gamers since the first title, but for the Ultimate version, they are in for extreme fun. Also available for the PlayStation Vita, it will introduce 12 new characters and add an online spectator mode. So, it will be up to the players to pit The Hulk against Chun li, and X-Men’s Storm against Morrigan. Who will be the ultimate fist-fighting champion?

Saints Row the Third

The Saints Row franchise only really took off with the release of the second title, and gamers really loved it. Being a mixture of Crackdown and Grand Theft Auto, players will have to defend their Stilwater turf as a new threat comes racing into town. The game has been known to go the extra mile in outlandish battles and gameplay, so the third title won’t be any different. For a gang war with a difference, this one is sure to keep you busy for hours.

Skylanders Spyro’s Adventure

Skylanders is a rather unique concept when it comes to videogame. Everybody remembers the little dragon Spyro, but they have never seen him like this. The game comes shipped with a Portal of Power and stores the game’s save data on it. When players would like to play with a friend on a different console, they just take their PoP with them and continue – no matter if it’s Xbox or PlayStation. It’s great fun for the kids, but some adults will also find it enjoyable.

Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Skyrim is the next instalment of the hugely-popular Elder Scrolls franchise, and it follows on from the 2006 release Oblivion. If the previous game is anything to go by, Skyrim should keep gamers occupied till Christmas next year. The graphics in the first-person epic adventure RPG game has been given a massive boost, and the gameplay refined to deliver a really impressive title. Players familiar with Elder Scrolls will definitely be wanting to stand in line for this release.

Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor