There was much excitement here at the Long residence as the kids tore through about ten packages each. Top gifts were an electric guitar for my youngest son, Super Mario Galaxy and an MP3 player for my oldest, and Mars Mission Legos and the Flytech Dragonfly for the middle boy.
I have to admit that the Dragonfly is a pretty amazing bit of inexpensive technology. We took it outside and were pretty much stunned at how well it worked. My wife was even a little creeped out by how closely it replicated a real bug! Hopefully we can keep it intact long enough to get some good use out of it. It seems a little bit fragile.
I wasn’t able to pilot Mario in Galaxy yet, but the game sure did look fantastic while watching my son play. I’m so glad that we waited until Christmas as it made the game that much more of an event. I kind of wish more gamers would have children so it would let them see just how much excitement one game can be when you wait for it like that. I’ll definitely be playing myself as time allows over the next month.
The electric guitar was a huge hit with my youngest, who doesn’t know how to play but sure does want to hammer on it. Hopefully Santa has turned him onto a lifelong interest in playing music.
As for me, it was a good year, as it almost always is. I’m pretty lucky in that I have family who like to get me the stuff I enjoy most. While I’ve complained a bit this year that I’ve already got too many games to play and didn’t need any more, receiving a bunch of them today certainly didn’t bother me a bit. I can finally get caught up on the late year PC releases. Under the tree I found Enemy Territory: Quake Wars along with a Razer Tarantula and Diamondback 3G. I think the keyboard allows me to macro an entire World of Warcraft raid into the push of a single button.
At my in-laws, I received Star Wars: Best of PC which is one of the best collections of PC games you can buy for one low price. It includes Knights of the Old Republic, Empire at War, Republic Commando, Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast, and Battlefront all in one box. It’s also got a Galaxies 15-day trial. All of these games are new to me on the PC, though I’ve dabbled in a couple on the consoles. They happened to come out when I was deep in reviews for the magazine so just never had time to play them. At $35-$40, this is one of the best values in PC gaming right now, and even better as a Christmas gift. That wasn’t all, though. I have Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and The Witcher from the in-laws too. I’m really looking forward to both of them.
The boys got some other games… Pokémon Emerald for middle boy Isaac because it’s the only way to get Rayquaza while Rayman Raving Rabbids 2, Mario Strikers Charged, Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2 (DS), Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass (DS), and Mario vs. Sonic at the Olympic Games rounded out the videogaming from Santa between all three of them. Needless to say, we’ve got a lot to entertain us here for the foreseeable future. I don’t plan on buying much in January, though I’ll probably take advantage of the sale on Steam this week to get the id Super Pack. That’s just way too much cool stuff for a very reasonable price.
I hope everyone else was as lucky as me, and if you’ve got Quake Wars or Call of Duty 4, I’ll certainly look for you online. I’ll play as often I can between building Lego kits, helping a little boy strum the guitar, and flying a dragonfly around the neighborhood. I’ll also update here a few times, too. All of these games will figure into my own little end of year roundup of the best games I played in 2007. That might take a little while to get to though. Wouldn’t want to be too hasty in making up that list!