While Nintendo's gunning for big sales of the Wii U and 3DS this Holiday season, game-related festive gifts don't have to be all about systems and games. As the big N has such an iconic position in popular culture and a host of much-loved franchises, it inspires plenty of cool, artistic and quirky merchandise — sellers can range from official stores to small-time businesses aiming to brighten your day while paying the bills. Sometimes the least essential things can be, in the right circumstances, conversely essential to scratching an itch.
As we're fans of cool Nintendo things here, we thought we'd highlight some options for the Holiday season that could be charming stocking fillers or beefy main gifts — we've provided links to retailers in the headers. Without any more aimless build-up, let's show some off.
Gamer Soaps — Firebox
We've covered these before, a range of soaps that are shaped to look like a range of retro controllers and cartridges, including Super NES carts, a NES controller, Game Boy carts and more. They're priced between £8.99 and £12.99 in the UK, with international delivery options offered and other online retailers selling variations on the same theme.
A Whole Load of Stuff — Nintendo UK Official Store
If you're in the UK and want some official options, the UK store has a "cool stuff" section of official merchandise. None of it is off the wall, but there's a range of figurines, hats, t-shirts, keyrings and accessories to gawk at. If you're flush with cash — £119.99, to be precise — you can grab the pictured collection of special edition hardcover Legend of Zelda guides, which is just lovely.
A Range of Goodies — Etsy
This category's a little different, as Etsy is an online marketplace that hosts smaller sellers; each of the following are from different merchants.
A pricey treat, this is a recreation of the iconic instrument in Ocarina of Time, which comes nicely presented with a carry bag. You can show your love for the Zelda series and learn to play an instrument.
Made to order, this is one of a few similar products with this aesthetic — a modded Game Boy Pocket is another. This is a USB controller, too, so you can use it to play games on a PC, provided you have some that'll let you use a D-Pad.
If you're dressing up for a special occasion but want to show off your discerning retro tastes, these cufflinks will do just that. Or they'll prompt your family / friends / date to be a little puzzled.
We like rolling our eyes and laughing, occasionally, at patent illustrations, but this is the classier approach. Available in 18 different styles, these posters give us a lovely graphic of patent drawings for the iconic Game Boy.
This is just a lovely example of hand-made art at a reasonable price, portraying everyone's favourite green dinosaur in boots, blending pixel-art with a slightly more modern background.
As far as nifty desk decorations go, these aren't a bad bet, available in two designs.
If you like Monopoly, it's possible that — whatever your region — you'll be able to track down an official Nintendo version of the game. There are other versions covering The Legend of Zelda and Pokémon, too, in addition to officially licenced puzzles, Connect 4, chess sets and more. Major retailers, comic book and toy stores should have some of these in stock.
Another one that should be available from multiple retailers, this could fulfil some fantasies for young karting fans. It's pricey, and if you're older try to resist riding one — you don't want to break it.
We've highlighted some of the efforts from First 4 Figures before, sizeable and rather impressive collectible figurines. These are another expensive option, running into hundreds of dollars, but there are lovely figures covering franchises such as Metroid, The Legend of Zelda and Mega Man.
Those are some Nintendo-themed treats that could be ideal additions to any collection this Holiday season. Let us know of any great options that we've missed in the comments, and don't buy them all unless you're very, very rich.
A shout-out to Picollecta, which pointed us to a few of these entries.
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