UMass Boston's independent, student-run newspaper

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Videogame Connoisseur’s 2007 Christmas Buying Guide

Alright, before anyone gets their panties in a twist, or briefs in a bunch, or thongs in a knot, or what ever undergarments you choose to wear contorted in some uncomfortable way over my use of the terms ‘Christmas Buying Guide’ rather than the more PC ‘Holiday Shopping Guide’ I have one thing to say: bugger off. They say write what you know and what I know is Christmas. So, here for your perusing pleasure is the 2007 VGC Christmas Buying Guide: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

The Orange Box (PC, Xbox360, PS3/ $59.99/ Rated M(Mature))

The Good: Five of the greatest FPS’s ever in one package: Half-Life2, Half-Life2: Episode One, Half-Life2: Episode Two, Team Fortress 2, and Portal. Portal alone is worth the price of the entire set. And if you don’t feel like going to the store you can buy it from Valve’s online service, Steam, and download it to your computer and be playing in less than an hour.

The Bad: At this point most gamers already have Half-Life2 and Half-Life2: Episode One, making buying the Orange box pointless for them.

The Ugly: If you don’t have an Internet connection you can’t install the games, let alone play them.

Rock Band (Xbox 360, PS3, PS2/$169.99/Rated T(Teen))

The Good: Winner of the VGC’s coveted Best Concept Award, you and your friends are a real(ish) band! Jam on the guitar, bass, drums or sing to some of the greatest rock songs that they could get licensing for, plus tons more available every day through downloadable content.

The Bad: Not as much fun if you don’t have friends or lack any kind of coordination.

The Ugly: PS2 version is stripped down and just makes me sad.

Super Mario Galaxy (Wii/ $49.99/ Rated E(Everyone))

The Good: Mario finally makes his big debut on the Wii (if you don’t count Super Paper Mario, which didn’t really make a whole lot of use of the Wii’s capabilities, and played fast and loose with the Mario canon). Instead of traveling from “world” to “world” you play in freaking galaxies jumping from planet to planet to save Princess Peach.

The Bad: Mario in space? Did they run out of ideas or has Miyamoto been taste testing the power-up mushrooms?

The Ugly: Playing this game may make you appear to be having a seizure as you wildly flail your arms about.

Now, I could go on but chances are that you, like me, have a limited budget this season, and Rock Band’s $170 price tag eats up a big chunk of that budget. So, for once I’m going to stop rambling early and just wish you a Merry Christmas, and remember it’s Jesus’ birthday so get him something too.