Nothing beats opening up a brand new game for the holidays, especially for children, but as gamers get older, it’s harder for parents to find the “new big thing” that they don’t already have. Subscription services like PS Plus Premium and Xbox Game Pass make it all the harder, but gaming-related gifts of all sorts are welcome. Books may not be the first thing to come to mind, but there are a lot of gaming-related books that many fans would welcome.
Indeed, whether it’s for FromSoftware fans obsessed with Elden Ring, DC fans who are forgiving of Gotham Knights‘ faults, or the avid Destiny 2 collector, it’s a safe bet that there are some great books for everyone, and these are the best to pick up for the holidays.
Elden Ring Official Strategy Guide, Vol. 1: The Lands Between
Elden Ring is easily one of the biggest hits of the year, having dominated gaming conversation for months after release. Many are still playing it or are eagerly awaiting Elden Ring DLC. To bide that time, the official strategy guide would make a great gift. This book focuses on the world of The Lands Between, discussing each of its regions, inhabitants, and so on. A second volume, The Shards of the Shattering, focuses on the enemies, armor, and weapons of Elden Ring. It is set to release sometime in 2023, but pre-ordering it now would make for a great, second gift associated with this first guidebook.
- Check out the Elden Ring Official Strategy Guide, Vol. 1: The Lands Between on Amazon (typically $49.99)
Destiny: The Exotic Collection, Volume One
Destiny 2′s overarching lore keeps players invested in the franchise, but it’s the guns that define its moment-to-moment gameplay. This volume gives players an intimate look at all the exotic weapons up to Season of the Lost, accompanied by a few more lore tidbits to appease all fans of the franchise. For any Destiny 2 fan, this would make a great gift, so they can turn to look at their favorite exotics, like Thorn, Outbreaked Perfected, Vex Mytholoclast, Lorentz Driver, and many more.
- Check out the Destiny: The Exotic Collection, Volume One on Amazon (typically $29.99)
Someone who loves gaming, cooking, and books may be hard to shop for, but rolling all of those passions into one is a great way. Luckily, there are plenty of official cookbooks out there. In fact, the God of War: Official Cookbook of the Nine Realms just recently released to coincide with God of War Ragnarok. The latest entry in the franchise has broken sales records, dominated Game Awards nominations, and its cookbook (along with many others) would make for a great gift.
- God of War: Official Cookbook of the Nine Realms ($39.99) – This cookbook includes recipes such as Midgard Roast Quail, Alfheim Karkade, Vanaheim Prosciutto-Wrapped Figs, Asgard Smoked Salmon Dip, Svartalfheim Fish Banh Mi, Jotunheim Taro Stew, Muspelheim Ginger Green Tea, Helheim Squid Ink Pasta, and Niflheim Banana Muffins. It also has an ingredient guide for more obscure items, as well as a dietary restriction guide for adjusting for vegetarian, gluten-free, and lactose-free diets.
- What’s more, this cookbook introduces some new lore for each of the realms in God of War Ragnarok.
- Check out the God of War: Official Cookbook on Amazon
- The Official Halo Cookbook ($39.99) – Structured very similar to the God of War Cookbook, this official Halo cookbook introduces recipes for World Cuisine Barbacoa Tacos, USNC Hot Dog Dinner, Fronk’s Kebabs, Have S’Moa Full-Stack Ground Pounder, Enzo’s Red Moon Salmon Curry, Thai Game’s Space Pad Thai, Kuku Cafe’s Gatsby Sandwich, and Full Moon Groob.
- Check out the Official Halo Cookbook on Amazon
- The Pokemon Cookbook ($14.49) – This simplistic cookbook is great for adults with children who want to inspire a love for cooking. Simplistic recipes abound, such as a Poke Ball sushi roll, Pikachu ramen, and Meowth mashed potatoes.
- Check out the Pokemon Cookbook on Amazon
- The Overwatch Official Cookbook ($15.49) – This cookbook includes a diverse line-up of dishes and drinks based on regions related to the diverse cast of Overwatch characters. Alongside a world tour of food, it introduces lore based to each character and names the recipes after characters, such as the drink known as The 76.
- Check out the Overwatch Official Cookbook on Amazon
- Other great gaming cookbooks include the following:
Gotham Knights: The Official Collector’s Compendium
The Gotham Knights Official Collector’s Compendium is a great book for fans of the game and/or DC fans at large. This book introduces great concept art, concept phases, and things for the game, but it also doubles as a guide book, development manifest, and more. It’s a great item for many reasons, and an excellent gift at that.
- Check out the Gotham Knights: The Official Collector’s Compendium on Amazon (typically $45)
The World of the Witcher: Video Game Compendium
The Witcher is as popular as ever, with CD Projekt Red releasing a next-gen update for The Witcher 3 in December, a Witcher 1 Remake being in the works, and a brand new Witcher Saga in development to boot. There’s never been a better time to pick up the full-blown compendium either. This illustrated, hardback work focuses on the weapons, regions, and beasts of The Witcher, and it’s a great deep dive for fans who want a little more Geralt in their life. What’s more, if fans of the game are avid readers too, it’s hard to go wrong with the books that inspired the games. The games are not 1:1 adaptations, but at the same time, there’s still plenty of joy to be hard.
- Check out the World of the Witcher: Video Game Compendium on Amazon
- Check out the complete Witcher series by Andrzej Sapkowski on Amazon
Disrupting the Game: From the Bronx to the Top of Nintendo
Disrupting the Game: From the Bronx to the Top of Nintendo is a must-read for any Nintendo fans, but it does stand out from the rest of the list. Instead of highlighting a game, this entry highlights one of the most prolific figures in the industry. Reggie Fils-Aime defined Nintendo during his career there, and this book is one part autobiography (discussing things such as being the son of Haitian immigrants to his relationship with Satoru Iwata), one part business book about shaking up the status quo within gaming and developing realistic visions, and one part self-help book as Fils-Aime’s advice easily translates to life too.
- Purchase Disrupting the Game: From the Bronx to the Top of Nintendo on Amazon
Control Freak: My Epic Adventure Making Video Games
CliffyB is known for his work on the Unreal and Gears of War series, becoming another well-known developer in the industry. Perfect for anyone who wants to enter the game development industry, Control Freak is CliffyB’s memoir about his work in the industry. It goes over Epic Games’ rise in the industry, is filled with his unique humor, but also addresses serious issues within the industry such as sexism and lack of representation.
- Purchase Control Freak: My Epic Adventure Making Video Games on Amazon