Joystick presents holiday gift guide for all ages

Published 5:00 pm Saturday, December 11, 2010

Kirby's Epic Yarn for Wii - Photo courtesy of Nintendo

Christmas time is here and you have no idea what video games your kids or grandkids play (aside from Call of Duty. You already yell at them to stop playing that one). Here’s some of the best games (that don’t involve the words Modern Warfare or Black Ops) to come out this year, just in time so you can order online or fight off your neighbors at the store to get a copy.

For the kids:

Donkey Kong Country Returns — Wii

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Good family fun packed into a punishing platformer, DKC Returns is a triumphant revival of one of the most beloved platforming games on the Super Nintendo.

Kirby’s Epic Yarn — Wii

Another throwback to a gaming classic, Kirby came back with a vengeance to combat evil yarn monsters who, with the help of a magical sock, are quickly turning everything into more yarn monsters. Despite the somewhat preschool sounding plot, Kirby’s Epic Yarn delivers when it comes to fun.

For the teens:

Transformers: The War for Cybertron — 360, PS3, Wii, DS, PC

While this isn’t necessarily a movie tie-in, this is a Transformers game that doesn’t suck. High Moon Studios redesigned the classic ‘80s characters and drew up an interesting story, while at the same time providing an incredible multiplayer mode which brings all of the expected features to the table. Highly fun and probably on sale, it’s a game that makes blowing up robots more cool than it sounds.

Dance Central — 360

One of the must-have games for this holiday season, Dance Central utilizes the new Kinect full-body motion device on the Xbox 360. With some great dance tunes and fun modes of play, it’s the game everyone’s talking about, which means it’s going to be a hot shelf item.

For the adults:

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow — 360, PS3

Yet another amazing reboot released in time for the holidays, the latest Castelvania incorporates some of the best action-adventure play around since Bayonetta. The surprise ending, stunning fight scenes and ultra-cool boss fights make this game one of this year’s best.

Assassin’s Creed:

Brotherhood — 360, PS3

AC: B is a sequel of sorts to Assassin’s Creed 2, with more story twists, much more action and a lot more assassinations. There’s even a multiplayer option, pitting skilled Renaissance killers against each other in careful, tense battles. Fans of the stealth action series will be pleased, while newcomers will enjoy the twists and turns.