Just about every Christmas since the first Atari console hit store shelves, video games have topped kids’ wish lists, and Christmas 2010 will be no different. So you’d better be ready and aware of what’s hot before you head for the stores, in order to get the best results — and the happiest kids — for your present-buying bucks.
The hottest video game releases for Christmas 2010 are actually console add-ons, as two of the big three console manufacturers enter the motion-based gaming field. Microsoft will be releasing the Kinect for Xbox 360. Kinect uses a camera to track the player’s movements and control the action on screen. Meanwhile, Sony has created the Playstation Move, which uses a handheld controller like Nintendo’s Wiimote. The Move will be released in September, while the Kinect is planned for a November release, and by Christmastime there should be a variety of video games for each controller in stores. This includes Kinect Dance Central, Kinectimals, and Kinect MotionSports for Xbox 360, and Kung Fu Riders, Sports Champions, and Lord of the Rings: Aragorn’s Quest for the Playstation. Kinectimals, which allows players to play with and train a variety of wild animals, should be especially popular with animal-loving kids. Check out this short clip I got of the trailer for Kinectimals from YouTube:
There are some video game series you can’t go wrong with. Any kid who loves sports will love a Madden football game, and this year’s edition, Madden 11, is topping a lot of Christmas lists. If your kid favors soccer over football, pick up FIFA 11 instead. For those with musical inclinations, Guitar Hero and Rock Band are as popular as ever.
Role-playing gamers and Disney fans alike will be looking for the latest release in the Kingdom Hearts series, Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, which brings adventure and the classic Disney characters again once more. Birth by Sleep, which is for the Playstation PSP, will be released in September.
For smaller children and creative types, look for Little Big Planet 2, a sequel to the popular and innovative video game that enables players to not only play through the game, but create, edit, and share their own levels. Little Big Planet 2 is due in stores in November 2010.
And here’s a clip of the PS Move… SWEET: