If you’re anything like me, there’s less than a week until Christmas and you’ve purchased exactly one gift. Good news! We here at Sidequest have rounded up some fantastic gift guides for the gamers in your life, and none of that boring “top games of the year” or “Best Buy gift card” stuff. Let our staff show you how to really impress this holiday season!
5 Apology Cards to Get the DM Who Puts Up With A Lot
You know what you did.
— Maddi Butler
5 Gifts for the GM Who Wants to Immerse All Your Senses
For that super-extra GM who probably majored in theatre design.
Sound: Spotify Premium Subscription
Soundtracks and atmospheric music with ads just won’t cut it (buy for a friend!)
Sight: Playmat with Wet-Erase Markers
Touch: Mini-Painting Kit
What better way to make your players feel attached to their characters than by painstakingly painting them to life? (paint kit, find minis that match your player characters). (Alternately, if you want to trick your GM into a very expensive new hobby? Get ’em the good stuff.)
Taste: Confection Molds and Cookie Cutters
Smell: Diffuser with Nature-Inspired Scents
Scent is one of the best tools for evoking memory, and there are plenty of oils made from woods, plants, and natural materials which will transport players to caves, forests, et cetera. (diffuser, guide to blending oils for outdoor settings)
— E. Forney
5 Candles for Making Scents of Your Games
— Angie Wenham
5 DIY Gifts for the Dice Lovers
Everyone has random dice lying around. Why not make dice magnets?
Gingerbread houses are so traditional. Bring a gingerbread D20 instead!
Forget boring jewelry stores. Show you care with a handmade dice pendant.
Make a bag of holding worthy of any challenge, on table or off.
Rest up after the holiday feasts with a set of dice pillows.
— Brenda Noiseux
5 Games That Will Affirm You When Your Older Family Questions Your Green Hair/Tattoos This Holiday Season
I know I personally have bore the brunt of many a holiday “you’ll never get a job with green hair” conversation.
Mae, Gregg, Bea, and Angus are sweet, adrift, punk young adults with a lot to prove, just like you. Even though the art in the game doesn’t show any, you just know they all have tattoos hidden under their clothes. You know they’re there for your style even if your family isn’t.
With the exception of the odd moment when the townsperson Caroline, who LITERALLY HAS GREEN HAIR, complains to you about her daughter Abby’s dyed hair, Stardew Valley is a calm, comforting game where anything goes, including all of your personal aesthetic choices.
Lemmings is a 1991 PC puzzle platformer where you direct green-haired lemming-like humanoids around the levels to get to the endpoint. Don’t think too hard about green-haired people being compared to lemmings and I’m sure it’s plenty affirming to see your hair reflected on screen?
In Tacoma, even though none of the crew of the space station have colorful hair in particular, many of them have piercings and tattoos and nontraditional hair styles, and a ton of body types and races are represented with *multiple* stable queer relationships in the narrative. Yes, I think it’s fair to say that Tacoma will affirm your fashion and life choices.
I’ll be honest, I haven’t played this game. But look at all the wild hair colors! Yes, they’re little squid creatures and not humans, but the game DOES deal with family drama, and just look at those neon hairstyles and cybergoth outfits, aahhh!
— Emily Durham
5 Holiday-Appropriate Tabletop Games You Can Play While Your Roommate/Partner Hogs the Switch Playing Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, a Game You Hate
Smash just isn’t for me, so yeah. I need to find other games to occupy my time now.
A sequel version to the base Ticket to Ride game, Nordic Countries will give you the cozy AF feeling of riding a train through Scandinavian countries in the snow. There’s snow and even a reindeer on the box! If you can find one or two friends who would rather play a board game with you than play Smash with your Switch-hog, then this one is perfect for the occasion.
Not into the December holidays as much? Perhaps you want to harken back to the good old days (yikes, was it really just two months ago?) when Halloween was the queen of the season. Ten Candles, a indie horror tabletop RPG designed to be played as a two to four-hour one-shot, is a great game if you want to really explore characters in a spooky atmosphere. But you’ll want to play this one in another room, because hearing the Smash soundtrack in the background will definitely ruin your suspension of disbelief.
‘Tis the season for cozy blankets and mugs of hot cocoa, so curl up with Patchwork for a wonderful, intimate, two-player experience. With someone other than your partner slash roommate. While they play Super Smash Bros. Without you.
Spinagogue is the official dreidel stadium of Major League Dreidel. Yes, you read that right. See? You can be competitive in a sport too!
Exactly what it sounds like. I guess this is what my life is now that I can’t use the Switch.
— Emily Durham
Madison Butler is Sidequest’s self-proclaimed jock editor. She co-founded the blog Critsumption and once got really into powerlifting via Fitness Boxing for the Nintendo Switch. She tweets at @_maddilo.