Be it Christmas or your friends upcoming birthday, you’ll be needing a go to list of retro gaming gifts that you can scout in order to hunt down the ultimate retro gift. We’re avid retro gamers so this list is going to be easy, but for those of you not into your games we hope this list helps you find the gift that will whack a big smile on their face when they open it on that special day.
These retro gaming gifts ranges from a handful of pennies all the way up to a small loan, so don’t feel as if this is the normal price to spend on retro gamers, this list will fit all budgets and can assure you any gift on this list will go down well. So let’s jump right in with the ultimate retro gaming gifts list!
The LDK Horizontal is one of the best retro handhelds on the market, coming in at just $60 it can emulate most of the old consoles from back in the day. For example it can play Gameboy, SNES, NES, Famicom, Gameboy Advance, Sega Mega Drive, Sega Game Gear and more. All you have to do is install ROMs from online onto an SD card which is very easy, and insert it into the handheld and you’re ready to play all of your old school games on the go. The LDK Horizontal beats most of its competitors because it comes with a great screen and an analogue stick, allowing gamers to play games the way they want. It’s pocket sized, has great battery life and comes with a pretty cool design. It’s worth a pick up for those friends and family that like to play with handhelds.
The 8Bitdo Pro Controller is a superb wireless controller for retro gaming enthusiasts. Not only is this controller incredibly comfortable, it’s taken the style from the original Gameboy and can connect to any of your modern day consoles, including the Nintendo Switch. So if you’re fed up of those tiny annoying joy-cons, you can pick up one of these and your friend or family member will be completing Link’s Awakening in no time! 8Bitdo is renowned for creating some of the best bluetooth controllers on the market, and their design is like no other on the market, and intrigues those with a nostalgic taste. It can even connect to smartphones and the upcoming Analogue Pocket should that be what you play on.
The Sega Mega Drive Mini is a brand new remake of the old 90’s console that was undoubtedly one of the best retro games consoles of all time. This remake comes in a miniature version packed full of 40 playable games straight out the box. Simply connect this to your TV’s HDMI port and you’ll be playing the likes of Sonic The Hedgehog, Earthworm Jim and Dynamite Heady in crispy 720p on the big screen. It comes with two controllers should you want to play with friends and it has the ability to switch to “Japanese mode” which changes all games to Japanese and unlocks the Japanese versions of the games which most western gamers have never even played! Plus it looks great in your gaming setup. Sega has done a splendid job with this console, and it comes with the old nostalgic box design too, ready to be displayed.
POP! figures are so last year, the latest collectible on the block is Tubbz, cosplaying ducks with a touch of retro. Created by Numskull these ducks are designed to be for those that like to show off their love of gaming characters in a slightly adorable manner. Some of the characters that you can like are Spyro, Crash Bandicoot, Dr Neo Cortex, Batman, Blanka and more! These things are well designed, look great on your desk and even come in an actual bathtub display allowing to stack them and collect even more! A cheap, affordable present that will certainly put smiles on faces and happily sits in our retro gaming gifts list!
For those that go beyond the 90’s gaming scene, there are incredible 1/4 scale replica arcades cabinets by Numskull. We have two of these arcade cabinets and can confirm not only do they play perfectly because it’s using the original game ROM it also looks amazing in your geek room. We have the Pac-Man and Galaga versions, both are great, and both light up at the top section when turned on, making it look even cooler on show. It’s not a cheap present but this is one that will keep you entertained for hours, even in 30 years time. It’s a great ornament and a great way to entertain guests, plus the detail to design is on point with that of the real thing.
These had to be on our retro gaming gifts list! Could you get any more retro than Crash Bandicoot? These little things are adorable lights that can be places all around your home. Each comes with batteries and a stand so that you can locate it where you wish. There’s a wide number of retro gaming characters to collect from the Crash franchise to Zelda. They are quite small and come fairly cheap, so it’s great for placing on a desk, or great for our audience who has kids because if they break it, it’s only $15! The icons design comes with a big head, making it look very unique and it screams nostalgia which we absolutely love.
The Nintendo Switch Lite is without doubt the ultimate retro gaming gift. It might not be “retro” but it can play a lot of new retro games that have came out over the last few years. For example the new Pokemon is coming out in November 2019, you have the ability to pair it with SNES controllers and it’s pocket smaller than the original old switch so you can take it where-ever you want without lugging around a larger handheld. It’s cheaper too, but it does lose the ability to go dock mode, so no syncing this up to your TV in a dock, you’ll have to use a classic HDMI cable and pair up old joy-cons. But this is one of the best handheld consoles out there and will give years up years of entertainment for whomever you buy one for. Plus you can get lots of accessories for this thing to make it look really cool, just like we done here.
One of our personal favourite retro gaming gifts of all time has to be the Game Boy Color. It holds a small place in our hearts because it was what started our passion for gaming and what you could say started Retro Dodo. And what better way to resurrect the original Game Boy Color than by modifying it into a modern day masterpiece? Our good friend Aaron over at CHROMA_WORKS is a retro gaming enthusiast who turns the old Game Boy Color into a modern day handheld by adding in a backlit display and a rechargeable battery allowing you to say goodbye to those old nasty batteries! He has a few variants, the all crystal white version which is our personal favourite.
Consider signing up for the email notification to get notified when pre-orders go live. Or if you’re local to Los Angeles, feel free to stop into Retro Game Camp in Little Tokyo to see and purchase a CHROMA_WORKS Game Boy Color in person. These don’t come cheap, but if you want to keep the nostalgia of the design, but want to be able to actually see the screen, then this custom Game Boy will one of the finest handheld consoles to add to your collection.
Would it be a retro gaming gifts list without terribly great mugs? Probably not. The mug is the go to gift, everyone loves them and everyone also hates to love them. But they do their job, and they do it well! You can get some good ones like this Playstation controller above, or even heat changing mugs that show a Gameboys screen when it’s hot. You just need to do some searching around the find the best one. I’m trying to think of more thing to write about a mug… but it’s a mug.
One of our favourite retro kitchen products has to be these adorable Geeki Tikis! These little things are perfect for parties, add some ice and your favourite beverage, perhaps a cocktail and you’re ready to get your geek on. These are very cheap also, coming in at around $15 for one, but each set comes with a number of characters. Geek Tikis have lots of sets, from Star Wars to Pop Eye, there’s a set for everyone. Collect them all and you can then put these on show! A great cheap product that happily sits on our best retro gaming gifts list.
So there you have it a list of extraordinary retro gaming gifts. Hopefully this will help you out with Christmas planning and getting that surprise birthday sorted. We’ll be adding to this list on a monthly basis so make sure to pop back to get even more inspiration. Or you can go one step further and join us over on instagram @retro_dodo for daily inspiration on the best retro gaming products on planet earth.