Gaming gifts are some of the best gifts you can bestow upon yourself or your loved ones. Looking for a new gaming laptop, console, or accessories to go along with either of those? Are you searching for the perfect gift from one of those categories to give to someone this holiday season? We definitely have you covered with this guide of gaming gifts.
When it comes to gaming, you definitely want the best stuff you can get. The thing is there's quite a lot of options out there. You need to think about how big of a screen to get. Whether to get wireless or wired headphones. And if that weren't enough you still have to consider the keyboards and mice.
We're aiming to make things easier with this year's buying process by breaking down the gift guide into sections. Below you'll find sections for gaming laptops, gaming accessories, gaming consoles, and VR headsets.
If you know exactly what product category you're looking in, you can jump straight to it by hitting the links in the table of contents below.
Table of Contents
Best gaming gifts – gaming laptops
Gaming laptops aren't just your standard laptop. They're packed with all sorts of components that are designed to allow you to play games.
Playing games of course, can be a demanding activity. As a result of things like graphics, RAM usage, and the amount of storage that games take up. Laptops also aren't everyone's cup of tea, as some might prefer a desktop machine.
That's ok. Desktops are great for games too. Laptops however, are portable, and they've gotten better designs over the years. They've also gotten much more powerful than they used to be. That's why we're focusing on gaming laptops in this guide.
If you don't have a lot of time and just want to breeze through the selections, then below is a small summary of our picks.
|ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701||From $2,899||Amazon|
|Razer Blade 15 Advanced Model||From $2,199||Amazon|
|Acer Predator Helios 300||$957.83||Amazon|
|MSI GS65 Stealth – 006||From $1,688.47||Amazon|
|Gigabyte Aero 15||From $1,599||Amazon|
Best overall gaming laptop: ASUS ROG Zephyrus S GX701
The ROG Zephyrus S GX701 is the best damn gaming laptop on the market, and as a result, it comes at a hefty price tag. Because if you want the best it usually doesn't come cheap.
For the price you're paying, ASUS is delivering one stellar gaming laptop with plenty of features that will keep you gaming with the highest possible quality of most if not all games.
It comes with a big, beautiful 17.3-inch display. Not just any display though. It has a 144Hz refresh rate so your games have high frame rates. The only downside for some here is that the screen is going to be FHD and UHD. If that doesn't bother you, it doesn't get better than this.
This laptop also comes with the latest GPU tech, sporting NVIDIA's RTX 2080 Max-Q design, along with 16GB of RAM and 1TB of SSD space. ASUS does offer a 2TB option, but that will bump up the cost from $2,899 to $3,059.
It has an extremely premium build, it's very thin, and it doesn't weigh 12 pounds like past ASUS ROG gaming laptops. On the contrary, it weighs under 6 pounds, which means you can easily take this thing to game anywhere.
Best gaming laptop for customization & build quality: Razer Blade 15 – Advanced Model
There was a time that Razer was the undisputed king of gaming laptops. Over time however more competition showed up and as a result Razer is not the undisputed king it once was.
That being said, Razer still holds the crown in a few areas. If you're looking for the gaming laptop with the best build quality and the best design, the Blade is your laptop. Razer makes the best-looking gaming laptop on the market. Hands down. And that hasn't changed since it started making gaming laptops.
Above all, the Razer Blade 15 is one of the best gaming laptops is because of the customization options. It offer a wider list than competitors for CPU and GPU options. The model we have listed is the Advanced Model and comes with the RTX 2070 Max-Q GPU design, but you can also get the Blade 15 with the RTX 2080 Max-Q or even the RTX 2060 Max-Q options if you want to scale up or scale down. You can even get select from the 1060 Max-Q or 1660 Ti options.
Since this is Razer, the LEDs on the keyboard and on the triple-headed snake logo are based on Razer's Chroma tech, so you get a highly customizable LED setup as well that's integrated with top games.
Best gaming laptop for a more affordable option: Acer Predator Helios 300
The last two laptops on the list are quite expensive. A decent gaming PC doesn't have to be though. In fact, one of the best gaming PCs you can get your hands on is quite affordable.
So affordable in fact it comes in at under $1,000. You'll find that the Predator Helios 300, our next laptop on the list, comes with a slightly beefier build, some larger bezels, and a tad bit older of a GPU.
The GTX 1060 from NVIDIA is nothing to scoff at though. It's actually an amazing GPU and allows for playing most games at some of the highest quality. You won't be blowing the doors off your graphics with this one, but they will be pretty good.
They key here is that this is a more affordable gaming laptop. One that you don't have to break the bank to buy, and can still play games at high settings.
You can count high frame rates as one of things you'll get too, as the screen is 15.6-inches and comes with a 144Hz refresh rate. It also has 16GB of RAM, as well as a 256GB SSD. The hard drive space may be small, but there is an empty slot for upgrading to a second drive if you need more space.
Overall, this a fantastic gaming laptop that will handle most games. It comes with a few nice perks as well, like a backlit keyboard and a decently large trackpad. And, when it comes down to it, if you're trying to save money but still game, you can't go wrong here.
Best gaming laptop for portability: MSI GS65 Stealth
If you're looking for portability in a gaming laptop, one that isn't hampered by low-end specs, look no further than the MSI GS65 Stealth.
Out of the laptops on this list, it's thinner than all of them and it weighs the least. These are big things to consider, since the reason for having a laptop in the first place is portability.
The GS65 Stealth measures 0.69-inches thin. That's not a massive difference from some of the other options which are listed at 0.7-inches. It is thinner though, therefore that adds to the sleekness and the overall weight.
Speaking of weight, did we mention the GS65 Stealth is light? It only weighs 4.19 pounds, which is lighter than the second lightest gaming laptop on here – the Razer Blade 15, which weighs in at 4.63 pounds.
The best part? This super portable gaming laptop still comes with some crushing specs. It has a powerful NVIDIA RTX 2060 in it and it has 16GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD so there's lots of room for games. If you want a more powerful GPU, you can pick the GS65 Stealth up with either the RTX 2070 or 2080 GPU as well. It also has pretty long battery life, so you don't always have to bring the power brick with you.
Best gaming laptop for battery life: Gigabyte Aero 15
If there's one thing gaming laptops need an improvement on it's battery life. Most of them have battery life which isn't the most desirable. This is where the Gigabyte Aero comes out ahead.
It has excellent battery life thanks to the 94.24Wh battery. This is rated for around 8 hours of battery life on a single charge, though it's probably closer to 6,
Still, 6 hours of battery life on a powerful gaming laptop is not too shabby. In fact it's quite impressive. The model we have selected also come with an NVIDIA RTX 2060 GPU, though it can be upgraded to the 2070 model as well.
Perhaps the one drawback is that this does weigh more than any of the other laptops at 8.25 pounds, but it's just about as thin so it will still easily fit in most bags. If you don't mind the heavier weight, this is a fantastic gaming laptop option that will let you play longer and still perform at high settings.
Best gaming gifts – gaming accessories
Gaming machines like laptops are the bread and butter of a gaming setup. But that doesn't mean you don't need anything else. If you want to game properly and with the best possible experience, you'll want some accessories.
Things like a gaming mouse, a pair of headphones, a decent mouse mat and maybe even a keyboard or macro pad, depending on if you prefer them.
Below we've rounded up a small list of the best accessories you can pick up for your gaming laptop. Or perhaps you already have a gaming desktop but need new peripherals.
If you're short on time, we've put together a quick summary table below that lists each item, along with the cost and where to buy it so you can get to it quickly. Below that we'll describe each item with a little more detail.
|Sennheiser GSP 670 Wireless Gaming Headset||$349.95||Amazon|
|Razer Viper Ultimate||$149.99||Amazon|
|Razer Tartarus Pro Gaming Keypad||$129.99||Amazon|
|Corsair K70 RGB MK.2 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard||$119.99||Amazon|
|Corsair MM300 Extended Gaming Mouse Mat||$19.99||Amazon|
|Elite Series 2 Wireless Controller for Xbox One||$179.99||Amazon|
|DualShock 4 Wireless Controller for PS4||From $43.95||Amazon|
|Nintendo Switch Pro Controller||$62.99||Amazon|
Best gaming headset: Sennheiser GSP 670
Yes, this is an expensive headset. It's also the best gaming headset on the market and for numerous reasons.
For example, it offers unparalleled sound quality, it's extremely comfortable to wear all day and has multiple adjustments to fit that can be made. For instance, you can extend or shorten the height of the headband.
On top of that though, it also offers adjustable sliders on the top of the headband. These are there to regulate the distribution of pressure so it's as comfortable as possible. The list goes on for why this is the best headset you can buy for gaming.
It's wireless, you have separate volume adjustments for chat volume and regular volume, and you can use it with PC, PS4, and Xbox One. Did we mention it's extremely comfortable?
Of course the most important thing besides comfort is sound quality. And as mentioned above, it's unparalleled. This is Sennheiser. They know audio, and this is as premium as gaming headset audio gets and why we listed it as one of the best gaming gifts.
Best gaming mouse: Razer Viper Ultimate
Razer has been dominating the gaming peripheral space for a very long time. While it has loads of competition now, a lot of its accessories are still top tier and the best you'll find.
The world's best gaming mouse? Yeah, Razer makes it. The Viper Ultimate is that mouse. Why is it the best? For starters, it's ambidextrous. Razer is catering to the lefties too. The ambidextrous design was improved from the previous model as well.
The thing with mice from Razer is that they are packed with features to help you game at your best. Onboard memory for easy game settings, programmable buttons, long battery life, the Viper Ultimate has it all.
Plus, it's extremely customizable and fast, and like just about everything Razer makes it looks really good.
Best gaming keypad: Razer Tartarus Pro
If you've never played your PC games with a macro pad or gaming keypad like this before, you're missing out.
It adds a whole other level of precision and capabilities in your games thanks to the large collection of macro keys. If you're unfamiliar with macro keys, they're basically just customizable keys that allow for one or a series of actions in a game with a single keypress.
Thanks to Razer's highly customizable options through its peripheral software, you can set up plenty of stuff and have specific profiles for each game.
The Tartarus Pro is Razer's latest gaming keypad, featuring 32 programmable keys, which means endless possibilities when you pair it with a mouse that has programmable buttons as well.
Razer is also using its optical analog switches on this device, which just translates to better accuracy and scalable input from a single key press.
Best gaming keyboard: Corsair K70 RGB MK.2
Corsair makes great gaming products, from PC components to gaming peripherals like this keyboard.
One of the best things about it is that it's made from anodized aluminum. Corsair also took into account the cleanliness of keyboards over time.
Depending on the design it can be hard to keep keyboards clean, and a big reason for this is the casing or plate that surrounds each key. This will never be an issue with the K70 RGB MK.2 because each key is out in the open.
This makes it very, very easy to pop the keys off and wipe everything down, which is definitely something you want to do every so often if you're using it a lot.
This is a keyboard that was designed and built to last first and foremost. Beyond that, Corsair loaded it up with all kinds of useful feature, like volume dial for easily adjusting the volume of your games or media. RGB lighting, and USB passthrough. It's also a bit cheaper than comparable keyboards, as it sells for $119.99.
Best gaming mouse mat: Corsair MM300 Extended
There are a ton of different mouse mats out there and while you could technically use any of them for gaming, having one specifically for gaming is a better idea.
There's also been an increasing trend over the years with longer gaming mouse mats, like this Corsair MM300 Extended. Some people prefer shorter mouse mats, and that's ok.
But, once you've used an extended mouse mat you will never go back to one of the standard sized ones. This allows you to fit both the mouse and the keyboard on the mat and gives you extra space for wrist movement.
The MM300 Extended doesn't just provide you with more surface space for your mouse though, it also comes with anti-fray edges so the top surface isn't coming apart at the corners or anywhere else.
It's also got a very secure rubber grip on the bottom so the mouse mat isn't moving around. Corsair's mouse mats are on par with any other top-tier competitor. Not only putting them on equal footing, but they're less expensive so they're a better value.
Best Xbox One controller: Elite Series 2
The Xbox Elite Wireless controller was everyone favorite Xbox One controller and for good reason. Now, Microsoft is releasing the Elite Series 2, which improves upon the original with updated design for better comfort and more customization.
Hands down, the biggest and best thing about this controller is the customization options. The Elite Series 2 lets you adjust the tightness of the thumbsticks, the height of the thumbsticks, the sensitivity of the bumpers up top and more.
You can even swap out the D pads. This controller offers up 40 hours of battery life too, so you can play games for hours on end without worrying it will die in the middle of session.
With extra buttons, customizable fittings, and the ability to connect via Bluetooth or Xbox Wireless and USB, the Elite Series 2 is versatile, comfortable, and unmatched. It's pricey at $179.99, but then you can use this and give the standard controller to your friends when they come over to play, letting you have the edge.
Best PS4 controller: DualShock 4
Sony's tried and true controller for the PlayStation 4 is hard to beat. It's the perfect balance of shape, comfort, and function.
And why fix what isn't broken? Not to mention, the DualShock 4 is a fraction of the cost of some of the more advanced options. With the DualShock 4, you're getting everything you need, including comfortable thumbsticks and extremely responsive buttons.
There are also loads of different colors available for the DualShock 4 that allow you to customize the look of your controller. You also get the built-in speaker which plays certain parts of game audio through it for an enhanced and unique experience.
Prices for the DualShock will range from $43.95 on up, depending on the color you choose.
Best Nintendo Switch controller: Nintendo Switch Pro Controller
Again, it doesn't get much better than the original here. While the JoyCon will serve their purpose for any of the games you play on the Switch, the Pro Controller is better suited as it will provide a more comfortable fit in your hands, especially if you're playing at home.
To keep things comfortable for as long as possible, you'll find textured grips on the parts you hold. As well as textured thumbsticks that are offset just like on the Xbox One controller.
This also has some pretty stellar battery life. It's advertised at over 40 hours which is exceptional. Your mileage may vary here, but it seems most people are getting well over 30 hours before needing to charge up again.
That means more game time, and that means more fun. As for buttons, the Pro Controller is more quipped to handle games that may require more buttons than what the JoyCon offers. So it's not just comfort that makes it better, but also functionality.
Best gaming gifts – consoles
There's not a whole lot of console choices out there these days. You basically have your three major options. One from Nintendo, one from Sony, and one from Microsoft.
So for this particular part of the guide we're just going to list the best console for a specific consumer based on what you're looking for.
If you don't have a lot of time, we have a summary table below that lists the consoles, as well as the price and where to buy so you can jump straight to it. Below that, we have a slightly more detailed description of each item.
|PS4 Pro 1TB – Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Bundle||$399||Amazon|
|Xbox One X 1TB Gears 5 Bundle||$399||Amazon|
Best console for online multiplayer: PS4 Pro
When it comes to consoles everyone will have their favorites but when it comes down to it the PS4 Pro is the best console for online play.
The main reason is because it's just a better-selling console, which means there's more people with one and more people playing one.
That isn't to say the Xbox platform isn't a good platform, just that the online community for the PS4 is better, which makes it a better console if you're looking to play online multiplayer games quite often.
The model we have chosen is the 1TB Call of Duty: Modern Warfare bundle, which comes with a full copy of Modern Warfare, which comes with a PlayStation exclusive Specs Ops Survival Mode. Which leads to the next point – exclusives.
PS4 has exclusives for everything. Not just more big hit exclusive games, but exclusive content in games that are on multiple platforms. This Modern Warfare bundle is a good example. If you're looking for the best online gaming experience on consoles, this is it.
Best console for game streaming & multi platform gaming: Xbox One X
PS4 may have a better online multiplayer scene and contracts that reward its players with exclusive in-game content, but Xbox One X has a much better streaming and multi platform setup.
Let me explain. The Xbox One X allows you to connect and play your games on a Windows PC. That's also just the tip of the iceberg. Microsoft recent rolled its preview of the Xbox Console Streaming feature.
So, if you have an Xbox One, you can easily stream your games to an Android device. Yes, Sony has Remote Play, but it's notoriously bad on anything but the PS Vita handheld. This gives the Xbox a big edge in playing games elsewhere besides the console.
Not to mention, most of the big budget games will be available here as well. Like Modern Warfare, Destiny 2, and more.
The console model we have selected is the 1TB Xbox One X Gears 5 bundle. This is probably the best bundle out there, because it comes with not only Gears 5 which has been an extremely well-received game, it also comes with past Gears games. So you're getting a lot here for the price.
Best console for portable gaming and family use: Nintendo Switch
Each of the other two consoles have their respective strengths. The Nintendo Switch has one big edge over both, which is portability.
While you can use either Remote Play or the new Xbox Console Streaming preview (if you have access), neither of those will be as good of an experience for on-the-go gaming as the Switch.
Not looking to head out? Not a problem, you can just dock the Switch and play at home. Then, take it with you and continue playing when you do have to leave.
Portable gaming aside, the Nintendo Switch is also the best console for families. It has more family-oriented games, and some of those games have more iconic franchises that kids will know. Like Pokémon and Mario.
If you want a little more gaming freedom, such as a console you can easily play on flights, you want the Nintendo Switch.
Best gaming gifts – VR Headsets
VR headsets still feel like a fairly niche product. That being said they're really cool if you love games. And these days there are more options for high quality headsets than ever.
We've rounded up what we think are the best VR headsets on the market for various consumer types and have listed them here in this guide.
Whether you fancy playing on your PC, on your console, or on the go, there is an option here for you.
If you're in a bit of a hurry to finish shopping, we have a summary table for you below that lists each headset, it's price, and where to buy it. Below that, we have a little bit more detail about each product.
|Nintendo Labo VR Kit||$80||Amazon|
|HTC Vive Pro Starter Edition||$1,599||Amazon|
|HTC Vive Cosmos||$699||Amazon|
Best VR Headset for kids: Nintendo Labo VR Kit
Nintendo has already set itself up as a fantastic console maker for kids. The Switch is great for adults too, but there's no doubting that many of the games available are kid-friendly. More so than other platforms.
That's why the Nintendo Labo VR kit is the best VR headset for kids. It's essentially based on the Google Cardboard tech, and offers a wide range of options in how to build out the headset depending on the game it's being used with.
When paired with other kits that are designed for the VR kit, kids can immerse themselves in a game that turns them into a robot. Or an elephant.
The whole idea of the Labo VR Kit takes virtual reality and transforms it into something fun for kids, but more than that they can also build the kit equipment as that's how the Labo is set up.
With Labo, Nintendo has come up with a way to ensure kids are getting a unique gaming experience. Building the different kits can also make for a nice parent-child bonding activity.
Best VR Headset for PlayStation owners: PlayStation VR
Sony may only make one VR headset – the PSVR, but that doesn't have to stop PlayStation owners from buying into a different type of VR headset.
That being said, the PSVR is still the best device for PlayStation owners. It adds more richness to the PS4 system and even lets you tie in certain game experiences with titles you may already own.
Since the PSVR is built around the use with the PS4, you also get some other useful tech, like the PlayStation camera, and the PSVR move controllers.
While the move controllers are really only for use with VR games, the PlayStation camera can be used for other stuff. Like livestreaming your games. Headphones are included with the newer bundle that plug right into the headset, so you don't need any extra equipment.
Best VR headset for premium users: HTC Vive Pro Eye
Sometimes you have to go big or go home and that's what you're doing here with the HTC Vive Pro Eye.
The Vive Pro Eye has the best graphics and most premium build, and it should at the premium price of around $1,599. HTC's original Vive headset was a cut above the very limited competition and the Vive Pro Eye seems to take things in the same direction.
With dual AMOLED display panels, Steam VR tracking, Hi-Res certified audio with integrated headphones, precision eye tracking, there's nothing not to love about this setup. It also has precision tracking so you can play in a variety of ways, like seated or standing.
All that said, this is a high-powered setup and it demands a high-powered PC. So you will need to make sure you have the PC that can support this hardware.
Best VR headset for having no extra hardware: Oculus Quest
All-in-one headsets didn't exactly have a great start a couple of years ago. They were underpowered and under-used, quite possibly because of the lower power and the lack of content.
The Oculus Quest changes all that. It's a very capable and very powerful VR headset that can be used on the go because it has all of the hardware contained inside itself.
It has 128GB of memory too so you can store all your content. The nice thing about the Quest is that if you want to use it with a PC you can. Thanks to some upcoming new tech from Facebook which lets you plug into a desktop.
This essentially makes the Quest the same as the Rift S, and it can access the same content even if you aren't around a gaming rig. The headset also boasts easy setup, you know, since there's no need to attach it to a PC.
Best overall VR headset for most PC users: HTC Vive Cosmos
For most users that are willing to spend the money on a PC-based VR headset, the Vive Cosmos should be the one on your radar.
It has the same Steam and Viveport library access as the Vive Pro and the original Vive. It also has newer hardware the older Vive headset didn't offer, but it also doesn't cost nearly as much as the Vive Pro because it retails for $699.
You're still getting six tracking cameras to make sure you have fully immersed experience without bumping into stuff. And if you ever need to take yourself out of virtual reality, you can just flip the headset up instead of having to take it off entirely.
It also comes with dual hi-res displays and a 90Hz refresh rate, so expect your games to have less frame skips or noticeable frame rate drops.