Are you one of those crazy people who stand in line for hours hoping to snag a Christmas gift at a significant discount? Or do you prefer to spend Black Friday at home, shopping online? Either way, here's a quick primer on the five best and three worst deals you'll likely find.
5. Aging consoles for great prices
Still don't have an Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, or a Wii? They won't be current much longer—in fact, the Wii is already on its way out—but there's never been a better time to buy. You can get an Xbox 360 bundle for $199 just about anywhere, but you'll have to decide whether you'd prefer a 4 GB hard drive with a Kinect, Kinect Disneyland, and Kinect Adventures, or a 250 GB drive with Forza 4 and Skyrim included. You can also go bare-bones at Walmart for $149 and get Skylanders, or at Toys 'R' Us for $99 with no game included. If a new PS3 is your thing, your best bet is GameStop's deal, which includes a 250 GB hard drive, the inFamous collection, and the Uncharted double pack for $199. And if you're really late to the Wii party, you can grab a console at Kmart, complete with Wii Sports, Wii Sports Resort, and a $30 rewards card (members only) for $130.
4. Nice deals on slightly old games
Video games get cheaper as they age, and this gives retailers the ability to sell fairly recent material at incredibly low prices. Walmart has quite the collection for $25, with titles including Modern Warfare 3, Borderlands 2, Battlefield 3, and XCOM. Toys 'R' Us has a buy one, get one for a dollar sale on a comparable selection, including Arkham City and Black Ops. At Best Buy you can get Darksiders II and Medal of Honor Warfighter for $30 a pop. In fact, just about every retailer has good prices on games that have been around for at least a few months.
3. This year's blockbuster at next year's price
If it's great to get old games for cheap, it's even better to get current bestsellers for less. Lots of retailers are including Dishonored in their specials for $25 or $30, but the Microsoft Store takes the cake with Forza Horizon for $14.99 and Assassin's Creed III for $24.99.
2. Vita comes down to earth
The Vita has been slow to get off the ground, but it's hard to pass up a good deal. Now that the high prices of launch have worn off, retailers are offering all sorts of great bundles for about $200. Best Buy's bundle includes Black Ops Declassified, Target packs in LEGO Batman 2, and at GameStop you'll score Assassin's Creed III: Liberation.
1. Free New Super Mario Bros.
This is one of those classic doorbusters—quantities are limited, and if you don't get in line very, very early, you almost certainly won't get it. But if you want to spend some time waiting and then spend at least $40 at Old Navy, New Super Mario Bros. U is yours, free of charge.
3. Practically regular price
The idea of Black Friday is to give insanely good deals. A few bucks off isn't a doorbuster; it's regular price online. GameStop is inexplicably pushing Assassin's Creed III for $50 and requiring the purchase of a PS3 to get PlayStation All-Star Battle Royale for $40. Sorry, but no dice.
2. Leggo my LEGO
Kmart's game deals this year aren't bad on the whole—but for some reason, they almost entirely neglect games for Nintendo's consoles, save for a bunch of $14.99 LEGO games. Is that really all we want to play on our Wiis and DSes?
1. Didn't want it then; don't want it now
It's tempting for retailers to use Black Friday as an excuse to clearance out old junk that no one wants, and this year some stores failed to resist. If you missed out on the opportunity to grab Army Corps of Hell, JumpStart Deep Sea Escape, or Style Lab: Fashion Design back when you could have thought they might be good, now's your chance!
Date: November 20, 2012
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*