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Christmas Gift Guide: Games consoles

We bring you a quick look at the best games consoles available this year.

Xbox and PlayStation

There’s just a month left until Christmas Day so it’s time to start thinking of what gifts to buy for family and friends.

If you’re stuck for Christmas gift ideas for a gaming fan this year then you might want to consider treating them to a new games console.

We’ve put together this list of the various consoles that you should be considering. Stay tuned to EF for games gift guides for each of the systems below.

Microsoft Xbox One

Xbox One

Don’t be fooled by the confusing name as this is the latest and greatest Xbox from Microsoft. The Xbox One takes over from the Xbox 360 and is our pick of the consoles this year. It only launched in the UK on the 22nd November but already has an impressive selection of games and next year looks even better. It’s packed full of new features including redesigned controller, Blu-ray, Cloud support, Game recording, Kinect 2.0 and plenty of entertainment features. We wouldn’t recommend it for younger gamers at the moment as there aren’t many games for them. Also be aware it isn’t backwards compatible with Xbox One games. The Xbox One is likely to be in short supply until the end of the year and you can expect to pay at least £429.99 for the console and £40-£55 for the games.

Sony PlayStation 4

PS4

The Sony PlayStation 4 launches in the UK on November 29th and will be going head to head with the Xbox One this year. Following on from the fantastic PlayStation 3 the new machine looks to be focusing mainly on games. The launch line up is slightly less impressive than the Xbox One and there currently isn’t much choice for the younger gamers. There’s plenty of new features including a redesigned controller and Remote Play for the PS Vita. The PS4 is also likely to be in short supply until the end of the year. You can expect to play £349.99 for the console with the games costing around £40-£55 but make  sure you check out the excellent PlayStation Plus service. The optional camera will also set you back around £45.

Nintendo Wii U

Wii U

The successor to the Nintendo Wii has been around now for over a year and is by far the cheapest of the next-gen consoles. It’s also fully backwards compatible with the Nintendo Wii allowing you to keep your Wii game library. It’s the best choice for younger gamers and the Wii U Gamepad controller lets you play without needing to takeover the TV. The Wii U 32GB Premium Pack will set you back around £230 but shop around for a bundle that comes with a game or two as you’ll get the games far cheaper this way. Expect to pay up to £40 for the latest titles.

Microsoft Xbox 360

New Xbox 360

The Xbox 360 was the top console of the previous generation and is expected to be around for the next 3 years. If you’re on a tighter budget or not ready for next-gen gaming just yet then it’s a fantastic choice. There’s an absolutely massive library of games available for all ages. New titles can still set you back £40 but there are plenty of cheaper games to be had. If you don’t mind going second hand you can even pickup games for just a few pounds each. The latest 360 model has been given an Xbox One makeover and will set you back around £160. We’d recommend going for the 250GB hard drive version over the 4GB one as it gives far more space. You might also want to consider a bundle with Kinect.

Sony PlayStation 3

PS3

Like the Xbox 360 the PlayStation 3 remains a brilliant choice and has plenty of life left in it yet. It’s far cheaper than the PlayStation 4 and there’s an enormous library of games on offer to suit gamers of all ages. You can grab the 12GB version for around £160 but we’d strongly recommend the 500GB version which can be found for under £200.

 

Sony PlayStation Vita

PS Vita

Sony’s PS Vita is the most powerful of the handhelds due to the PlayStation 3 quality graphics. Depending on your needs there are Wi-Fi and 3G versions to choose from. If you’re buying for a PS4 gamer then the Vita is a perfect choice thanks to the PS4 Remote Play feature. Suitable for older kids to adults the Vita starts at around £170 with games costing anything from a few pounds up to about £35 for the latest titles.

Nintendo 2DS

Nintendo 2DS

The Nintendo 2DS is aimed at younger gamers thanks to it’s slate design and chunkier form-factor. It’s backwards compatible with the Nintendo DS and also does everything the 3DS does apart from the 3D visuals. Expect to pay around £110 for the console and £10-£35 for the games.

Nintendo 3DS

Nintendo 3DS

The 3DS is the most popular Nintendo handheld thanks to it’s gorgeous 3D graphics that don’t require special glasses to view them. It’s suitable for gamers of all ages but we’d suggest the 2DS as a better option for younger kids. packed full of features expect to pay around £130 for the console. It comes in a variety of colours and there is also an XL version for around £150.

 

 

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