It’s that time of year! It’s the time for festive cheer, hot cocoa by the fire, cozy blankets and . . . presents!
And lucky for you, people know what to get you, right? You’re a developer, so chances are you’re still an avid gamer, and you want to get games for the holidays.
Well, maybe not exactly. Developers don’t have time to play every game that comes out. Catching up on a pile of games over the course of the years takes some magic.
No, instead, it would be nice to get presents that you can use throughout the year. Presents that help in the development process! And for that matter, it would be awesome to get presents like this for other developer friends. Or even for your own studio.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
1) Computers to Start Out With
Not everyone can afford fancy equipment when they’re starting out. In fact, often times, new game developers work on dated computers until they can afford something a little better. If this sounds like you, or you know someone like this, you might want to check out these awesome gaming computers on the cheap.
- A Dell gaming laptop for under $700.
- How about a Lenovo for $650?
- The MacBook Air 13.3-inch, normally $1k is going to be discounted by $200 on Black Friday.
- The Spectre x360 is perfect for work, and flexible at that.
2) TVs & Monitors
TVs and Monitors are perfect for any developer. A better screen to see all the details of what you’re doing can make a difference. Plus, it makes for an awesome screen to pull up those mindless YouTube videos when you desperately just need break.
- Although not cheap, this LG beauty is cheap by high-end standards.
- Acer Predator XB271HU 27″ WQHD IPS monitor with NVIDIA G-Sync is $200 off with promo code EMCBBBH32.
3) Activity Trackers
As someone who refuses to get up and walk around without my Fitbit on, let me just say how important this one is. Sure, an activity tracker won’t help you get your game done. It won’t directly tie into your creative projects. However, it will tie in with your sedentary lifestyle, and force you to take some time to focus on yourself.
Game development can be all-consuming, and it often requires extensive time sitting down and just knocking things off your to do skills. Having an activity tracker will help you battle the bulge and counteract that breakfast burrito from Taco Bell or wherever it is you go get your unhealthy fix.
- Fitbit deals have been going for $99, but keep an eye on Target, Best Buy, Walmart and Fries Electronics.
- If you’re not into the $99 on sale price tag, there are cheaper options like Garmin.
4) Cooking Healthy
Hey, you can’t work on an empty stomach. And rather than get take out and be unhealthy, it’s best if you roll up your sleeves and get cooking. No, not the Mac n’ Cheese, the good homemade meals that keep that midsection in check. Being a game developer doesn’t have to mean a life filled with Cheeto dust and Snickers, as tasty as that might be. Use some of these devices to keep yourself in line.
- Don’t be fooled, smoothies aren’t always healthy. You might be getting more calories than you think. Be accurate with the Perfect Blend Pro.
- Who said Christmas gifts need to be expensive? Try this $10 food scale to get accurate serving sizes and nutrition.
Honestly, working those long hours would be unbearable without the aid of some music and time to zone out from the world. For many people, that means headphones. And while those Apple ones can be nice, there’s nothing like actual headphones. The sound quality, the noise-cancelling effect. Can you imagine jamming out while rendering grass, and being left alone? Ah, talk about productivity at its finest.
- Bose Quietcomfort are on sale now for almost 50% off.
- Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC Wireless headphones would be the cheaper alternative to Bose, but don’t be fooled. They’re highly rated.
If you already have all the gear you could ever use while designing, it’s time to upgrade what you already have. When was the last time you upgraded your hardware?
- The Intel Core i7-7700 Kaby Lake Quad-Core 3.6 GHz desktop processor is a good buy for $284.99.
- Need an AMD version instead? And something cheaper. Try the AMD FX-8350 Black Edition Vishera 8-Core 4.0 GHz desktop processor for $59.99.
- How about some memory? The Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4 SDRAM desktop memory is going for $154.99, normally $216.99. Use the promo code EMCBBBH26.
Remember, holiday gifts should be functional. While small, smile-inducing gifts are always welcome, the best gifts are those that people can use day to day. And they don’t even need to be expensive!
To find the best deals, check out websites and forums that highlight the best sale, give out promo codes, and offer tips from people who have a lot more scavenging experience. More so, don’t wait until the last day to make a note of what you want to get. The time to act is now, because you never know when a deal will be posted, and things sell out quickly.
Most importantly, be honest about what you, and your loved ones, actually need. If you work long hours and feel like you don’t have a quiet place to yourself to get your game done, get headphones! If you know someone who is just starting out in the industry, get them starter gear. And if there’s a developer who absolutely loves to play games, and still has that kind of time, get them games!
Best of luck this holiday shopping season, and happy holidays! If you enjoyed this article, feel free to retweet.