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Holiday Gifts & Lifestyle

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Holiday gift ideas for avid gamers

Video games have a strong and enduring fanbase. Since their inception in the early 1970s, video games have been a popular component of personal recreation and culture.

The Entertainment Software Association's annual report says 65 percent of homes in the United States own a gaming device, while 48 percent own "a dedicated game console." The report also indicates consumers spent $25.5 billion on gaming in 2015, with $16.5 billion on gaming content alone.

Although video games originated as arcade entertainment and one- or two-player games that were enjoyed exclusively in one's home, they've expanded to be technical wonders that can connect gamers with other fans from all around the globe. Today's multiplayer online games feature participants from all walks of life who connect via their gaming consoles, computers, tablets, and smartphones.

The holiday season is a prime time to outfit gamers with new gear. When shopping for gifts for gamers, keep these suggestions in mind.

• New console: Gamers have more console options than ever before. Shoppers can choose between the ultra-portable Nintendo Switch; the Xbox One X, which boasts 4K capability; and the PS4. For those who don't know where to start, a console upgrade can be the way to go.

• Controller charger: Video game controller chargers and docks can give renewed power to controllers. Thanks to a charger, controllers will always be powered up and at the ready when it's time for hardcore play.

• Content gift card: Gift-givers can offer gift cards to favorite video game stores and online gaming content, including Steam. Steam is a digital distributor platform for PC gaming that also features social networking services.

• Gaming headsets: The right headset can immerse gamers more fully in the sounds and actions of their favorite games. An attached microphone enables gamers to keep in contact with multiplayers.

• Classic game cartridge system: Retro game systems enable classic game enthusiasts to plug in their old cartridges and output them to the TV over HDMI.

• Wireless controllers: If the console didn't come with a wireless controller, it's time to upgrade. Wireless versions enable players to move wherever they need to and not be restricted by the length of a cable.

• Gaming keyboards: A gaming keyboard puts those who do the bulk of their gaming on PCs or streaming computer displays over TV in greater control.

• Sound bar: Turn that action into impressive sound with a sound bar hooked up to the television. Built-in bass or a separate subwoofer can amplify the tone even further.

There are many options for getting coveted gifts for gamers this holiday season. GG189267

Monte Vista Journal