25 Awesome Gifts For Game Developers

best gifts for game developers

How to buy Gifts for Game Developers

Take Advantage of Insider Jokes!

Game developers have a set of common insider jokes that most people wouldn’t know about. Surprise your loved one with your appreciation and knowledge of their industry!

Textbooks or Toys?

If you’re a pragmatist, you may be leaning towards buying a textbook or other academic materials. Remember, most game developers will likely already have this type of material; it would be wiser to get them a unique and fun gift instead!

Don’t Stereotype with Gifts for Game Developers!

Buying traditional “nerd gifts” can come off as offensive. Unless you know that they are into Star Wars, hold off on stereotypical gifts.

Digital or Physical Gifts for Game Developers?

Remember that, while gifts for game developers can come in digital or physical form, people in this profession spend a lot of time in front of a screen. Go for something physical rather than that giant eBook collection they’ll never read!

Something more customizable?

If you’re looking for an unforgettable gift for your favorite game developer, you can’t go wrong with Memory in Waves. Have an inside joke with your game developer? Just want to tell him how much you love him/her? Whatever audio you choose, a professional sound engineer transforms it into a soundwave that gets laser-printed onto a shirt. Enjoy 10% on all Memory in Waves items. Use CLEVER10 at checkout. 

Gifts for Game Developers

iFixIt Pro Tech Toolkit

This is a large set of tools designed to help open up and fix a huge variety of electronics. Rather than pay someone else to fix it or buy a new product, game developers can diagnose issues on machines they depend on with this inexpensive toolkit! It comes with every tool needed to open up modern electronics and fix them, and it’s the exact tools that the famous repair company, iFixIt, uses!

benefits
  • Giant collection of tools for less than the cost of a single, basic repair!
  • Also has a 64-bit driver set, necessary to open up most electronics.
  • Used by and sold by a reputable company.

Laptop Sticker Pack for Game Developers

Every game developer has some sort of preference when it comes to certain languages and frameworks. Many see their laptops as a symbol of who they are and what they do, so you’ll often see us with tons of stickers on our laptops, but they carry significant meaning! A pack of stickers that a game developer may choose from is excellent if you don’t know exactly what technologies to look out for!

benefits
  • Comes with stickers for every modern game development technology.
  • All stickers are sized perfectly for standard laptops.
  • Stickers of all different color themes for different colors of laptops!

Coder Mug

Being a game developer is as much an identity as it is an occupation! Many developers take pride in their work and skills. This mug, in particular, has C++ code on it, a very common language used in game development. Although it’s a long block of code, it translates essentially to “continue to make and drink coffee until work is done”, which will likely be amusing for them and their fellow developers!

benefits
  • Perfect for game developers because it has C++ code.
  • Everyone needs a coffee mug; why not have a custom one?
  • This gift will show appreciation for developer culture and skillsets!

Oculus Quest All-In-One VR Gaming Headset

This is the first “all-in-one” virtual reality gaming system from Oculus, the industry leader! Coming in 64 GB and 128 GB SSD storage, this headset does it all! As one of the best gifts for game developers, it lets the user become immersed in any game that supports virtual reality. There’s no need to have a separate computer, either!

benefits
  • A completely immersive experience with noise-canceling audio!
  • The only “all-in-one” VR solution.
  • Can be used in almost any size of the room!
  • All movement is tracked automatically, so no more holding pieces of plastic!

Ergonomic Split Keyboard

Ergonomics are commonly overlooked by many in the tech industry, including game developers. Using a standard keyboard for a long time can actually be harmful to one’s hands, which is why a natural, split design is an excellent idea to preserve your favorite game developer’s health!

benefits
  • Has a palm rest that helps avoid hand issues!
  • Keys are reinforced, designed for those who type a lot (like developers)!
  • Using this keyboard will naturally correct poor sitting posture, so you can also save your favorite game dev from back problems later on!

Video Game Storytelling Book

I know we advised you that the best gifts for game developers usually aren’t textbooks. However, this book is written by a game writer and producer, and it focuses on creating a compelling narrative for games, rather than the technical details behind them. Any game developer could benefit from this easy read!

benefits
  • Author has 25 years of experience at companies like Marvel, Activision, and LucasFilm in game development!
  • Book walks through examples of game storytelling and exercises to practice in it!
  • Uses classic and modern writing techniques, combining the best of both worlds!

Developer Pride T-Shirt

Game developers have difficult jobs, and they’re often unknown and under-appreciated. A T-Shirt bragging about their occupation will help with boosting their mood and self-esteem, especially if it’s decorated and illustrated well, like the one we linked here! This is one of the few items only applicable as gifts for game developers!

benefits
  • Comes in several different colors; pick your game developer’s favorite!
  • Perfect developer-themed gift that’s affordable and practical.
  • Exceptionally well-illustrated, with retro vector graphics!

Sennheiser Gaming Headset

Although game developers spend a lot of time programming, they usually also spend a lot of time playing! Headsets can be particularly expensive, so they often buy cheaper ones of a lower quality. Sennheiser is the top of the line in this industry, but it’s still fairly affordable! This headset is compatible with PC and a few game consoles and allows for clear, high-definition communication online, whether testing a game they made or just playing another one for fun!

benefits
  • One of the few headsets with noise-blocking functionality.
  • Uses memory foam earpads for maximum comfort.
  • Often used in professional video game tournaments due to its high quality!

Gaming Design Concept Art Book

Before any game gets made, concept art is done. This captures the visual style that is to be developed. Every game developer needs one of these, and they are very inexpensive. These books are designed specifically to draw out what needs to be made on a grid and has space to add important notes. 

benefits
  • Acts as both a “development diary” and concept art notebook!
  • Helps hone drawing skills for game developers!
  • One of the cheapest gifts for game developers out there!

ViewSonic 34” Curved Monitor

Protip: Game developers love curved monitors. They support 3D technology and are great for game testing (and playing). Whether it’s a second, third, or fourth monitor, it can serve as a great supplement to any developer’s setup! This specific monitor is designed for smooth and high-definition game and video playback!

benefits
  • Immersive curved screen design is great for getting into games!
  • Specialized technology to support 100 frames per second, higher than industry standards!
  • Highly customizable and adjustable color displays to optimize playback for anything!

NVIDIA Jetson Nano Devkit

This handy little machine can speed up game development tremendously. It is an Artificial Intelligence machine, and it uses very little power. It can be used during game development to strengthen the abilities of virtual opponents within the game. This also saves your favorite game dev tons of money over time, as they won’t have to invest in a new computer to get the horsepower they need for their next hit game!

benefits
  • Very compact and easy to transport.
  • Allows modern Artificial Intelligence to be used even in basic games.
  • Only needs to be connected to the development computer using microUSB!

DisplayPort to VGA Adapter

You might be wondering what the point of this little cable is. Essentially “DisplayPort” is a newer technology that most modern monitors use; however, many monitors today still use a VGA connection. Game developers often run into a situation where they have VGA monitors and only DisplayPort outputs! This cable will allow them to connect a computer with a DisplayPort output to a VGA monitor, saving them thousands of dollars!

benefits
  • Inexpensive and practical gift for developers.
  • Addresses technical issue that is prevalent in the industry.

Tech Deck Finger Skateboards

Finger skateboards are a common sight in game development offices. Often used as a short (or long) break, these skateboards are easy to assemble and are very realistic. They can be used at even the smallest of desks, and they occupy game developers as they consider new ideas. This is one of those items you wouldn’t know about if you didn’t have insider knowledge (from us)!

benefits
  • Surprisingly fun to assemble and play with (even for adults)!
  • Very, very common in tech offices.
  • Shows the developer you did your research!

DigiLab 3D Printer

Most people are fascinated by 3D Printers and what they produce. However, for game developers, it goes beyond fascination. It actually can help them conceptualize games as they create them! For example, models of characters they make can actually be physically created and “printed” as plastic molds! Note: There are different “levels” (prices) of 3D printers. Higher-priced ones are usually more precise and can make more complex objects.

benefits
  • Let character and model ideas (literally) come to life!
  • Allows concept designers to see their ideas physically.
  • Moderately-priced machine for both novices and pros!

256-Pixel Digital Frame

This would be an awesome gift for anyone in a STEM field (or who is interested in technology). It is a basic picture frame, but there are 256 pixels that can be programmed individually to make “drawings” through an app that comes with the frame. This would be a great free-time activity and make a perfect office addition!

Benefits
  • Over 16 million colors can be selected!
  • Not an artist? Take advantage of the huge online gallery you can import!
  • Comes with a few different “pixel games” to play.

Keurig K-Elite Coffee and Tea Maker

If the game developer has a fixed desk and doesn’t work remotely, you might want a step up from the portable French Press! The Keurig K-Elite has lots of high-tech features that let you make pretty much any custom drink from a K-Cup in minutes! The game developer in your life can say goodbye to office coffee and hello to custom drinks at any time of the day for a very low price!

benefits
  • This is Keurig’s top product.
  • Makes any drink in moments, including caffeine to help a game dev stay focused and awake!

Redragon Ergonomic Mouse

A keyboard isn’t the only device that should be ergonomic! Game developers will also use their mice a lot more than most people as they test and code, so it’s extremely important that their hands are protected. Redragon is a respectable brand, and this mouse is designed to support the entire hand!

benefits
  • Programmable backlight colors perfect for gamers and developers!
  • Works on any PC with any modern Windows version.
  • Pinpoint accuracy that’s crucial for model and game design!

Cards Against Humanity

Another commonly found item in game developers’ offices, Cards Against Humanity is a famous game that’s particularly popular in the tech community. It’s difficult to describe, but it’s a simple card game where players try to make the most offensive combination of words possible, and it usually ends up being hilarious! It’s a light-hearted gift that most game developers would love, and it lets them take a break from all their hard work!

benefits
  • Hilarious game that helps bolster social activities.
  • The game is very common in the developer community.
  • Always a fun time, whether you play it with co-workers, friends, or family!

Game Developer’s Wall Clock

Sure, game developers’ computers also show the time. However, a wall clock adds diversity to decor, and this specific clock would be much appreciated by game devs! It is designed as a vinyl record with the text “Time” at the top and “to take a <br>” at the bottom. The “<br>” portion is HTML code for “break”, and centered right at 5 o’clock, so it can be reassuring during workdays and help game developers maintain a healthy work-life balance!

benefits
  • Very unique and artistic design; perfect for showing off at the office!
  • Uses code in the design to help reflect identity.
  • Also is a practical gift; game devs don’t spend all their time on a computer.

Organizer and Development Planner Book

Although most task documentation is computerized in the game development industry, most tasks are divided up over a period of days. Game developers can have difficulty keeping track of what has been done and what needs to get done, and this book helps them plan day-by-day and maximize productivity.

benefits
  • The book is already organized by dates!
  • There is space to write and space to draw, making it double as a concept art book!
  • Specifically designed for inventors and innovators; has a section dedicated to new ideas, crucial to new game development.

Super Mario Plush Characters

There are very few things that game developers love more than retro gaming! It’s where everything started, and knowing hit retro games and how they became hits is crucial history for game developers. Mario and Luigi are two very well-known icons from the hit game series, Super Mario Bros. This is a set of two plush characters (Mario and Luigi) that are about a foot tall each. They would fit in naturally in a game development environment as little desk ornaments, a perfect stocking stuffer for devs!

benefits
  • Large enough to be noticeable, but small enough to be placed on a desk.
  • Undisputed “kings” of retro games!
  • Shows a great appreciation for the game developer’s occupation and interests.

Monopoly: Gamer Edition

This is one of our favorites in our list of gifts for game developers. It’s a spin-off of the classic board game, Monopoly, that focuses on gamers. It uses licensed characters from the retro gaming syndicate, Nintendo. Everything about the game is changed, and rather than using “currency”, it’s all about getting the “high score”. This gift is perfect for a game developer since they can play with friends who don’t need experience in the industry and still have a great time (but don’t blame us if it causes a family dispute!).

 

benefits
    • As a Monopoly spin-off, it has the same playability and theme, so most players can catch onto the instructions quickly.
    • Everything is changed from the original Monopoly; all characters are Super Mario Bros. characters, there are power-up die that can give special abilities, and more!

Game Developer Mouse Pad

No developer’s setup would be complete without that custom mousepad! Coming in at almost 10” by 8”, this mouse pad has plenty of space for development, testing, and playing! It has some sample code on it. At an affordable price, this gift is a great little token of appreciation for the game developer in your life! It has a rubber backing so it won’t slip during even the most fast-paced of games

benefits
  • Ideal size at just under 10” by 8”!
  • Rubber backing ensures that the pad does not slip!
  • Filled with code, adding to a developer’s coding theme!

Bose QuietComfort Headphones

These state-of-the-art headphones are great for removing distracting background noise during game development. The sound quality is unparalleled, and they even support Amazon’s Alexa! Developers can use these either wirelessly or with Bluetooth. This is a perfect gift for work and play for your favorite game developer!

Benefits
  • Multiple levels of noise cancellation.
  • Also has a microphone, so it can be used to communicate online.
  • Supports Amazon Alexa.
  • Has Augmented Reality capabilities with certain apps!
  • From a reputable and long-running, respected brand in the industry.

weBoost 4G Cell Signal Booster

Whether at work or at home, there’s always that one spot where cell service drops out! This signal booster can be placed inside a home or workplace so that a game developer will always be able to receive calls and not lose reception, whether they want to work at their desk or in their basement!

benefits
  • Covers a 1500 sq. ft. radius, so it doesn’t have to constantly be moved!
  • Boosts both call signal and Internet signal!
  • Works with every major cell provider in the United States.
  • Can increase connection strength by 32x!
  • Easy setup will have it up and running in no time!

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