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Video Game Buying Guide: 2005
Xbox? PlayStation? Nintendo? We've got your best choices for all the systems.
November 14, 2005: 11:36 AM EST
Game Over is a weekly column by Chris Morris
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NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Greek gods, Nintendo's dogs and drivers you want to avoid. They're an odd combination, but they make up some of the best games on the market this year -- and are sure to please the gamer on your gift list.

While the Xbox 360 is going to get the lion's share of the press spotlight in the coming weeks, we've decided not to include it in this grouping. More people have PlayStation 2s and original Xboxes at this point -- and they'll make up the majority of the game-buying public this year.

Portable systems saw a huge surge in popularity as well, so we've got a roundup of can't miss games for the PSP and Nintendo DS.

What about the GameCube and the Game Boy Advance?

Well, truth be told, neither had a stellar year in terms of software, but we can make two solid recommendations for each.

GameCube owners: If you're buying with children in mind, there's no better choice than "Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat." Like last year's "Donkey Konga," this game is controlled with a set of bongos, only instead of keeping rhythm with popular music, you'll use the bongos to control the famous simian in a rollicking side-scrolling arcade game. (Yeah, you could play with a standard controller, but it'd ruin the fun.)

For adults, "Resident Evil 4" is the clear pick. This horror game is a white-knuckle affair with gorgeous cinematic presentation. Publisher Capcom reinvented one of its flagship franchises with "RE4" and throws in plenty of extras to keep the game fresh even after you've finished it. It's definitely not for kids, though.

With the focus on the DS, games for the Game Boy Advance have suffered, but there were a couple of winners. "The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap" is a classic Zelda game that's sure to please fans and newcomers to the series. "Wario Ware: Twisted" takes the quirky series of minigames and turns them on their side, including a gyroscope that lets you control games using not buttons, but by tilting your GBA back and forth. Both games are well suited for all audiences.

Other systems? We've got lots of recommendations for those – for players of all age ranges. Whether they like shooters, puzzle games or something a little off the beaten path, you're sure to find the perfect gift for the gamer in your life.

So what games made our video game buying guide? Find out here.

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Morris is director of content development for CNN/Money. Click here to send him an e-mail.  Top of page

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