The iPhone, iPad and iPod touch are pretty much the perfect mobile gaming platform and chances are you might be shopping for someone who just loves their iOS gaming. So what to get them? Luckily, there are lots and lots of gifts for gamers to choose from! Here are a few of my favorites, both for the hottest hardware and greatest games!
Don’t need anything for a gamer? Check out the recommendations anyway, something great might still catch your eye. If not, no worries, check out one of our other 2011 holiday gift guides!
If the special gamer on your list doesn't already have an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad, check out our device gift guide for some help figuring out which device is best for which gamer.
If your gamer already has their device, there are some great accessories out there to help them take their gaming to another level.
The iCade is a magical gift for the retro gamer. The iCade arcade cabinet is an accessory for your iPad which turns it into a retro arcade machine complete with joystick, six buttons and a glowing coin slot.
More and more games are being released that work with the iCade; including the Atari's Greatest Hits app. The iCade is designed to work with the iPad and iPad 2.
The iPad slots into the arcade cabinet and the controls are done over Bluetooth. Buying a gamer one of these should keep them happy not just over the holiday period but for the rest of their life too!
Fling and Fling Mini
What if you are watching your favorite gamer and they are constantly struggling with their game and can't achieve even the simplest tasks due to their finger and thumb fumblings on the shiny iPhone or iPad touchscreen? Fear not, there is a solution for that too, Ten One Design have come up with a well designed joystick for the iPad and a mini version for the iPhone and iPod touch too. Called the "Fling", it sticks to your screen with some small suction cups and claims to offer a console type gaming experience.
As you control a game with Fling, it pushes gently back towards the center position. This haptic feedback guides and stabilizes your gameplay, making every action more accurate. Any gamer would love to get their hands on one of these, me included!
mophie juice pack plus
It is pointless having the latest games and accessories for your iPhone if the battery on your device is not up to the task. Thankfully we have just the thing to buy for the gamer to keep their iPhone fully charged and ready to play.
The mophie juice pack is a hard shell case which fits the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. Built into the case is a 2000 mAh capacity battery. mophie claims that the juice pack plus will double your iPhone's battery life which gives you double the time to play your favorite games.
The mophie juice pack is the ideal gift for the iPhone gamer, it not only protects your iPhone but also doubles its battery life, a perfect gaming combination!
Motorola MOTOROKR S10HD Bluetooth Stereo Headphones
It's a classic story, they love to game, you'd dearly love some peace and quiet. Luckily, there's a gift that can keep on giving to the both of you -- stereo headphones! They get deep base and immersive sound, and the freedom of a cable-free experience, and you get blissful, well deserved silence.
While there are a ton of headphones to choose from, wire and unwired alike, the MOTOROKR looks and sounds great, and has just a touch of that futuristic feel to it.
What better gift for a gamer than more great games to play? The App Store is chock full of them, and iTunes allows you to gift them straight to your special gamer. (If you're not sure how, here's quick guide to gifting apps)
First person shooter (FPS) games: Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation
Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation is the ultimate First Person Shooter for the iOS platform. If you want to treat the gamer in your life with a great game then this may be the one to go for. You can play a solo mission with over 13 different levels each with fantastic graphics and enemy AI.
Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation also offers a highly polished online multiplayer game experience. You can battle up to twelve players in six maps with seven different modes of play. A word of warning, you can accelerate your gaming abilities in this game via in app purchase of weapons and health kits; some find this an unfair advantage!
It is also a universal binary so this particular game will look stunning on your iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
- $6.99 - App Store link
Also check out:
- Dead Space is a gorgeous, terrifying shooter set in the depth of space. $6.99 - App Store link
- N.O.V.A. 2 is the closest thing to HALO on the iPhone. $6.99 - App Store link
- RAGE HD comes from John Carmack and while it's on rails, it's also off the hook. $1.99 - App Store link
- Call of Duty: Zombies is all the undead you can empty a clip at. $4.99 App Store link
Arcade games: Real Racing 2
If the gamer on your gift hit list is into driving games then they don't get any better than Firemint's Real Racing 2. Real Racing 2 lets you take the wheel of 30 officially licensed cars and each has its own characteristics too. You can race against 16 other cars all at the same time.
Real Racing 2 also offers 15 locations to race in with over 40 miles of highly detailed race tracks, speedways and city center circuits. You can also choose to race in the daytime, twilight hours or evening.
If you are lucky enough to own an iPhone 4S or iPad 2 and an Apple TV (Black) you can even play wirelessly on your HDTV. Friends can join in too with split screen multiplayer and Party Play.
- $9.99 - App Store link
Also check out:
- Infinity Blade brings the Epic Unreal 3 engine to iOS. 'Nuff said. $2.99 - App Store link]
- Street Fighter IV Volt puts the classic fighter in the palm of your hands. $0.99 - App Store link
- Extraction: Project Outbreak is a fresh take on the top-down 3D shooter. $0.99 - App Store Link
- Atari's Greatest Hits brings the oldest of old school to your brand new advice. Free - App Store link
Casual Games: Amazing Breaker
Amazing Breaker is a game for the more casual gamer. It involves ice sculptures; you remember them, popular at high class parties but nowhere else. Anyway, the aim of the game is to destroy the ice sculptures with bombs, and try not to leave any shards of ice behind.
Amazing Breaker is a highly addictive puzzle game with over 80 levels to keep you busy. Designed for the Retina display, it offers high resolution graphics, easy to learn game play and Game Center achievements. The bombs you use to destroy the ice sculptures come in many different flavors too with Spike Bombs, Ghost Bombs, Helicopter Bombs and even Split Bombs. The game is a lot of fun and once you start it, you will struggle to put it down. A great gift for the gamer in your life!
- $0.99 - App Store link]
Also check out:
- Catan is a great version of a great strategy game. $4.99 - App Store link
- Words with Friends isn't Scrabble but it is an all out, all online spelling war. $0.99 - App Store link
- Carcassone is a beautiful rendition of the medieval strategy game. $9.99 - App Store link
- Poker by Zynga let's you get your Texus Hold'em on your iPhone. Free - App Store link
More great games for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad
Every day, TiPb covers the best new games and best new game updates, so if you're looking for more great game gift ideas, check out our gaming section! Likewise, the iTunes App Store has a games section with lots of great choices.
And if you're still not sure what to get, consider an iTunes Gift Card, that way the special gamer in your life can pick their very own gift!
Remember, you’re part of Team TiPb too, so if you’ve already picked the perfect gift for your iPhone or iPad gamer, or have the perfect idea for one, let us know in comments!