Gaming News

Published on December 14th, 2020 | by Danielle


Gaming and Gifts: What You Should Know for the 2020 Holiday Season

2020 has been a landmark of a year and not just because of the pandemic and presidential election; it’s also been a huge year in terms of gaming.

Not only have Animal Crossing and the Nintendo Switch taken the world by storm, but we have three — count ’em three — new consoles to play with this fall. The new Xbox Series X and S are the newest additions to the Microsoft family while the Playstation 5 making waves among longtime fans across the globe.

But what should you know about gaming and the holidays this year? Can you get your hands on a console before the holidays are over? Here’s what you should know about gaming and what you can do if you’re stuck for the perfect holiday gifts.

Playstation 5 Updates

The Playstation 5 has truly become one of the hottest consoles on the market today and everyone is eager to get their hands on one. Unfortunately, the release schedule for the PS5 has been sporadic at best. Popular retailers like Walmart and Playstation Direct have given little warning about when the consoles are being restocked. Rumor has it that Walmart will forgo selling PS5s in-store altogether because of the high demand. As such, they may only be offering PS5s online for the foreseeable future.

If you’re stuck trying to appease your gamer loved ones, it might be best to give them gift cards for the Playstation Store, Steam, or their other preferred platform. There are still plenty of games that are coming out for PS4 in the meantime, including new games like Cyberpunk 2077. With top-notch voice acting and awe-inspiring graphics, new games might be the best way to fill a PS5-shaped hole on your shopping list. Investing in a good headset can also help if they’re interested in online play with friends.

With only a week and some change until Christmas, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to unwrap this console on the holiday. The best advice is to keep checking your apps to see when the console will be back in stock. Set some reminders and ask your loved one if they would be okay with getting their present a little later this year.

What About the New Xbox Series X and S?

Just like the PS5, the new Xbox consoles have also been difficult to find. Rumor has it that Best Buy will actually be restocking these items on December 15 for the luck of shoppers everywhere. There’s no say on whether or not these items will be first-come-first-serve or if there will be an online queue. Put on those phone alerts to check the site often.

Similar to issues surrounding the PS5, you might want to tell your loved one something big is coming but you haven’t been able to buy it yet.

Do You Really Need the New Console?

While the new consoles are exciting and offer some of the best graphics to date, there’s no reason to buy the newest versions just because they’re available. In fact, there are countless games on older versions of these consoles that you and your loved ones haven’t played. And if you’re not interested in going too far back into your library, you can always check out some of the top games released this year. The new Spider-Man: Miles Morales game just came out and it’s available on PS4 despite all the hubbub surrounding its release on the PS5. You can also buy the new Assassin’s Creed Valhalla game for Xbox One. Though the allure of new graphics might make a new console seem like a necessity, the older consoles will offer a beautiful game without paying hundreds of dollars for a new model to play it on.

While the new consoles might be hot, they’re also…well, hot. There have been a litany of reports claiming that the PS5 has overheating issues. While these aren’t enough to send you to the local urgent care center over burnt fingers, it can slow gameplay and reduce the life of your console. The new Xbox consoles have reported similar issues, along with transfer problems when it comes to playing old games on the new console. Being an early adopter for the new consoles is cool, but it’s likely that developers will continue to improve on these consoles and release better versions in the near-future.

What to Buy in the Meantime

If you’re stuck trying to get the newest consoles, shifting your focus might be the best advice. In fact, the Nintendo Switch still managed to outsell all the new next-gen consoles during their release month in November. The Switch and the Switch Lite sold more than $1.3 million in the United States while the Playstation 5 only sold two million units across the globe.

Looking at more established console options like the Nintendo Switch or investing in an older PS4 or Xbox One can still bring a smile to someone’s face this year.

In the meantime, there’s no shame in getting your loved ones small gifts to placate them until the big console arrives. In fact, 37% of flower sales happen during major holidays like Hannukah and Christmas. It can also be a cute way to reveal that your loved one’s Xbox is on the way though! Psyche out your loved ones with flowers and write that the new console is coming in the card. The flowers will be a good way to placate your loved one until your package arrives.

At the end of the day, it isn’t about the quality of the gift: it’s the care and thought that went into it. While everyone is scrambling for these new consoles, there are plenty of ways to make the holiday season great.

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