Checkpoint’s 2017 Christmas Gift Guide

Feature article

It’s hard to buy for gamers, or so my mother has told me every year as Christmas rolls around. With 2017 drawing to a close the gamers in your life have been gifted with a year of breakout games. So many in fact that there is no way they’ve played them all.

So let Cameron, Nat, Rachel and Kieren do the leg work for you as we pick out some of the best gifts you can bless the gamer in your life with this holiday season.

Whether you’re buying for someone who’s a big kid at heart or an actual physical child, check out these light hearted titles.

Super Mario Odyssey
Available on Nintendo Switch

The iconic plumber is making his debut on the Nintendo Switch! Super Mario Odyssey returns to the acclaimed platforming reminiscent of Super Mario 64 across a myriad of worlds with an all new possession mechanic that is cuter then it sounds.

— Cameron

LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2
Available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

Do you like Marvel? What about Lego? Then by your powers combined… No wait sorry wrong superhero! But thankfully in LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2 you’ll find all the superheroes you’re looking for.  Back again to continue saving the world, can you help the Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor build a better tomorrow?

— Rachel

Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy
Available on PlayStation 4

The Bandicoot is back! Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy bundles together the original Crash Bandicoot trilogy from back on the PS1 and rebuilds it from the ground-up with high definition visuals and a sleek redesign.

— Nat

Super Lucky’s Tale
Available on Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

A delightful playground platform adventure game Super Lucky’s Tale is a wonderful choice for young and old or simply the young at heart. With evil cat villains right from the “Kitty Litter” in every world, this might also be the perfect choice for the crazy cat person in your life as well.

— Rachel

With the amazing advances in gaming we get to experience some of the most amazing moments in our history. These titles will be perfect for that person who claims they were born in the wrong era.

Assassins Creed Origins
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Microsoft Windows

Assassin’s Creed goes Egyptian. Taking the series further into the past than ever before, Assassin’s Creed Origins puts you in control of Bayek, who strives to protect his people in a time of great upheaval. Explore a massive open world filled with wonder, mystery, and danger.

— Nat

Call of Duty World War II

Call of Duty: WWII
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Microsoft Windows

Go back in time with Call of Duty: WWII and fight to save the free world from Nazi Germany. Work as a unified team in campaign mode to emerge victorious or enjoy the numerous multiplayer modes for a real challenge. Don’t forget to take down as many Nazi Zombies as you can in zombie survival mode!

— Kieren

Hellbalde: Senua’s Sacrifice
Available on Microsoft Windows & PlayStation 4

This is the game to get for the thinker in your life. Inspired by Norse mythology and Celtic culture Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice is brave enough to take a deep and dark journey into the struggles of psychosis all whilst delivering beautifully told story combined with hack and slash, puzzle solving, survival horror adventure.

— Rachel

Know that one person who can spin a five minute incident into dazzling tale that would make the bards of old marvel? Well then do we have some games for them.

Divinity: Original Sin II
Available on Microsoft Windows

The closest we’ve ever gotten to table top Dungeons and Dragons in our computer. Divinity: Original Sin II expands on the successful original with a massive campaign, deep mechanics and a co-op multiplayer that will leave you shook.

— Cameron

Uncharted: The Lost Legacy
Available on PlayStation 4

Just when you thought Uncharted was finished, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy shows up to drag you back in to the treasure hunting you know and love. Take control of Chloe Frazer and Nadine Ross as they search for Tusk of Ganesh in the mountains of India.

— Nat

Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch & Microsoft Windows

We’ve lost WWII; do everything in your power to repair the errors of the past in Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus. Join William and his rag-tag crew of rebels as they fight, against all odds, to bring down the Nazi army. Enjoy a satisfying and succinct story of good versus evil.

— Kieren

Everyone knows someone who on the regular needs to “Remember the 90’s” and these titles will help kickstart their nostalgia gland.

Metroid: Samus Returns
Available on Nintendo 3DS

Everyone’s favourite cybernetically enhanced human is back in Metriod: Samus Retuns. If you were a fan of the 1991 Game Boy classic Metriod II: Return of Samus then this should definitely be on your Christmas list this year!

— Rachel

Cuphead
Available on Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

Vintage animation never hit so hard! Cuphead was a title we waited years to see and when it finally arrived it brought addictively hard side scrolling of video game history back to the main stage. With stand out visuals and a toe tapping soundtrack this indie is a must have.

— Cameron

Sonic Mania
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch & Microsoft Windows

Test your reflexes in Sonic Mania, as Sonic, Tails and Knuckles zip through several colourful stages all with that glorious 16-bit sheen. It’s a real treat, going back to basics with the super speedy blue hedgehog and taking down Dr Robotnik once again!

— Kieren

I can show you the world! And you’ll be back by midnight… that’s if you don’t get lost in these addictive open world titles.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Available on Nintendo Switch

Hyahh! If you’re a Switch owner and you’ve not yet got The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild it’s time to put it on your Christmas wish list. Help Link restore Hyrule, locate the whereabouts of Zelda, and explore a vast and beautiful world. A must have game if you enjoy action, adventure, and endless hours of gameplay possibilities!

— Kieren

Horizon Zero Dawn: Definitive Edition
Available on PlayStation 4

What’s better than kickarse women in games, Kickarse women and robotic dinosaurs in games of course! Amongst the contenders to be game of the year, Horizon Zero Dawn: Definitive Edition is now available. So there’s never been a better time to pick up a copy and see what is some of the best examples of representation of women in games to date!

— Rachel

Middle-earth: Shadow of War
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Microsoft Windows

The follow-up to the wildly successful Shadow of Mordor, Middle-earth: Shadow of War again sees you play as the ranger Talion and elf lord sprit Celebrimbor. Forge a ring of power, build your orc army, and march against the dark lord Sauron. An updated “Nemesis” system allows the player to recruit soldiers from a variety of races to bolster their armies and fight their way to victory

— Nat

After an exhausting year with AAA publishers the time has come to remind your gamer friends about the passion in the gaming industry with these indie developed title.

Hand of Fate 2
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Microsoft Windows

If you’ve played collectible card games or you simply can’t get your CCG friend to join you in the realm of digital gaming, then Hand of Fate 2 is the game for you. The sequel to the highly successful Hand of Fate, it tis the season to rise to the challenge and master this living boardgame.

— Rachel

Nidhogg 2
Available on PlayStation 4, Mac & Microsoft Windows

Frantic fun and hilarious frustration await for those who play Nidhogg 2, the follow-up to the popular indie Nidhogg. Face off against a friend in a tug-of-war inspired kill-me-kill-you back and forth until one emerges victorious. A strong variety of stages, weapons, and colour palettes keep things exciting in this thoroughly entertaining title.

— Nat

Absolver
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

What do you get when you take a unique art style and a complex fighting system? Absolver. Get ready to start fights with strangers as you master your kung fu techniques in a mysterious land filled with AI and other players hoping to knock you out.

— Cameron

Got that one friend who says it doesn’t matter who wins or loses, but only when their winning? They may be a touch competitive and these titles will scratch that itch.

Star Wars Battlefront II
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

A long time ago in a galaxy far far away Star Wars Battlefront II answered the question of who would win in a duel between Luke Skywalker and Darth Maul. Take to the battlefield in massive 40 player battles and check out the story of brand new character Iden Versio.

— Cameron

GT Sport Photobooth

Gran Turismo Sport
Available on PlayStation 4

The world of racing is fast paced, but in the eyes of Kazunori Yamauchi designer and producer of Gran Turismo Sport things move at a different pace. If you’re the kind of car fan who spends their time polishing, driving to the right location and then polishing again just to get the perfect photo of your precious baby? Then GT Sport is for you. And once you’ve gotten your licence step out to race some eSports!

— Rachel

Splatoon 2

Splatoon 2
Available on Nintendo Switch

Ink up and get your splat on, with Splatoon 2, as you work in a team to cover the stage in an array of colours. Upgrade your arsenal and deal some heavy damage with an array of ink guns at your disposal. Who would’ve thought that being this messy would be so much fun?

— Kieren

Forza Motorsport 7
Available on Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

Put the pedal to the metal! Forza Motorsport 7 has become a flagship franchise in racing for the Xbox One. This latest addition comes stocked with over 700 cars and optimised for the Xbox One X to wow both returning fans and brand new ones.

— Cameron

Get this Party Started! These titles are perfect for the entertainer in your life to enjoy with the gamer and non gamer friends alike.

PlayLink: Knowledge is Power
Available on PlayStation 4 (smartphone or tablet required for play)

Ever wanted to host a trivia party on your console, but have no idea how to do it? No problem, Sony have you covered with PlayLink: Knowledge is Power! If you’re a fan of party gaming with friends and trivia then bring you mobile, a bunch of friends and get ready for a good time with plenty of laughs. Perfect for the hosts with the most!

— Rachel

Gang Beasts
Available on PlayStation 4, Steam & Oculus 

Do the words “silly multiplayer brawler” sound good to you? Then you need to check out Gang Beasts a hilarious party game where players control gelatinous goons and fight to hilarious deaths in absurdly hazardous environments. Totally stupid and totally hilarious, perfect for those holiday hang-out sessions.

— Nat

Just Dance 2017

Just Dance 2017
Available on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Nintendo  Switch, Wii U, Wii, Xbox One, Xbox 360 & Microsoft Windows

Shake your ‘groove thang’, and move you ‘money maker’ in Just Dance 2017. Filled with a soundtrack roster of 40 songs you’ll be bouncing your booty along to several hits. A game best enjoyed at parties with a roster of fancy footed friends and some space to move about.

— Kieran

Whether they’ve got ice running through their veins or love to give themselves mini heart attacks we all know someone who loves a good spook. Something wicked this way comes.

The Evil Within 2
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Microsoft Windows

The horror continues in The Evil Within 2. Set 3 years after the events of the original The Evil Within, protagonist Sebastian Castellanos is still haunted by his experiences. Endure true psychological terror in this survival horror sensation.

— Nat

Resident Evil VII Biohazard
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Microsoft Windows

Bring the horror Ho-ho home for Christmas with Resident Evil VII Biohazard! Get closer to the terror than ever before in first person and be ready to bring a change of undies when you play in PSVR. Perfect for the horror geek in your home!

— Rachel

Friday the 13th The Game

Friday the 13th: The Game
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

How long can you run and hide in Friday the 13th: The Game before it’s over? Whether you’re a camper just trying to survive or Jason looking to pick off his next bloody victim, you’re bound to be on the edge of your seat the entire time. Play with the lights off if you dare….

— Kieren

Fist to face, knee to groin! These titles will let your friends live out their fisticuff desires and leave both parties without any bruises, hopefully.

Injustice 2
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Android, iOS & Microsoft Windows

Do you like your beat em ups with a side order of movie grade cinematic brilliance? Then Injustice 2 is exactly what you’re after. Whilst the Marvel Cinematic Universe is shinning bright like a Bat Signal, DC appears to be left floundering like an Aquaman out of water… Perhaps if it had the quality of its TV and gaming universes things might start to pick up in a Flash!

— Rachel

Tekken 7
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Microsoft Windows

Let’s be real. You know what you’re getting into when you pop Tekken in to your console. Tekken 7 is more Tekken, but sleeker, prettier, snappier, and a massive roster of favourites and newcomers to choose from.

— Nat

Pokken DX

Pokken Tournament DX
Available on Nintendo Switch

Are you ready to enter the arena and be the best, the very best there ever was? In Pokken Tournament DX you’ll get that chance! Assemble your best Pokémon team and prepare to duke it out with several fan favourites a few wild cards to mix things up. A must have game if you enjoy a bit of 1 vs 1 competitive play.

— Kieren

There’s no “I” in team…but there is in cooperative — which is why we shortened it to co-op! Who doesn’t love fighting the forces of evil with friends?

Destiny 2
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

It’s time to shoot some space magic at alien races in Destiny 2. Now with it’s first expansion, Trials of Osiris, available you’ll find a very active player base all hunting for powerful loot and show stopping emotes. Jaw dropping graphics and one of the best in moment to moment shooting gameplay this title will get it’s hooks in you a not let go.

— Cameron

Fortnite
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows & Mac

Zombies, fort building, and co-operative play? Minecraft and Left 4 Dead rolled into one? Yes please! Defend yourself against the elements and the undead with up to 4 players in Fortnite, or jump into a 100-player fight to the death in Fortnite Battle Royale.

— Nat

Ark: Survival Evolved

ARK: Survival Evolved
Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

Prepare to live every kids dream; to ride a dinosaur in ARK: Survival Evolved, but prepare to work for it! Survive danger coming in from all angles, build up your base stronghold, and try hard not to die doing it. A sandbox game for the explorer in us all, and one to keep you occupied for hours on end.

— Kieren

Let’s get physical! From the confines of our home because I’ve got air conditioning here and no chance of taking a ball to the face, unless you really want to.

NBA 2K18
Available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Nintendo Switch & Microsoft Windows

The legendary sports series returns this year with NBA 2K18. Unparalleled authenticity and improvements on the court solidify the game as one of the must have titles in this generations highest rated sports series.

— Nat

WWE 2K18
Available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One & Microsoft Windows

Live out your fantasy of being a WWE wrestler or help someone you know live out theirs this festive season with the gift that keeps on giving till you submit! WWE 2K18 is the most realistic wrestling experience yet. With graphics this good you’ll practically GLOW (Shameless women of wrestling pun #notsorry)

— Rachel

MAdden NFL18

Madden NFL 18
Available on PlayStation 4 & Xbox One

Touchdown! Madden NFL 18 will certainly satisfy the sportsball gamer on Santa’s list. It provides both true and tested gameplay options with arcade, competitive and simulation modes and a unique campaign mode, Long Shot. Any sports fan looking for their next fix will love this under their Christmas tree!

— Kieren

This has been a year full of some amazing games! We hope this guide helped you figure out what to get those gamers in your life! Here’s hoping they get to play something that they love over the holiday season, and we hope you get to join in on the fun.

Happy Holidays from all of us here at the Checkpoint team.