The 8 Best Gifts for Gamers in 2020

Take it from us: These are the gifts every gamer wants

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The Rundown

Best Tabletop RPG Set: Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition Starter Set

Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition Starter Set

 Courtesy of AMazon

What We Like
  •  Everything you need to get started

  • Perfect for new and returning players

  • Budget friendly

What We Don't Like
  • Reports of missing dice

  • Reports of scalpers selling counterfeit products

Thanks to podcasts and Twitch shows like The Adventure Zone and Critical Role, Dungeons and Dragons has seen a resurgence in popularity. If you or someone you know is looking to start playing — or looking to come back after being away for a while — the D&D Starter Set is the perfect gift. It comes with everything you and a group of friends need to get started: a rule book, an adventure module, five pre-rolled character sheets, a blank character sheet, and a set of six dice. 

The rulebook and adventure module have been streamlined and updated to fit 5th Edition mechanics and should be easy for brand new DMs and players to follow. The adventure module also has plenty of notes to help new and returning dungeon masters craft a thrilling story and engaging combat. This starter set can be built upon with the Dungeon Master’s Guide, Player’s Handbook, and Monster Manual when you and your group get more comfortable with the game. The box the set comes in leaves plenty of space for storing notebooks, pens and pencils, and graph paper for easy travel to and from play sessions.

Runner-Up Tabletop RPG Set: Pathfinder Beginner Box

What We Like
  • Great for TTRPG vets and newcomers

  • Includes creature tokens

  • Rulebook and adventure modules included

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Doesn’t mesh very well with some Pathfinder adventure modules

Whether you’re a tabletop RPG veteran or total newcomer, Dungeons and Dragons isn’t your only option. The Pathfinder Beginner’s Box from Paizo Publishing is similar to the D&D Starter Se and includes everything you need to get started: a 64-page player handbook, a 96-page game master guide, four pre-rolled character sheets, four blank character sheets, a set of seven dice, a grid-printed game mat, and over 80 monster and player tokens. 

Like the D&D Starter Set, the Pathfinder Beginner’s Box can be built upon and expanded with other rulebooks and adventure modules available from Paizo Publishing. Fans of D&D will love learning a new game system and crafting new adventures, and TTRPG newbies will have tons of fun creating characters and learning combat mechanics. Not only does the Beginner’s Box come packaged with a pre-written adventure module, it also gives both new and veteran game masters the tools they need to build their own unique worlds and pen extraordinary encounters and quests.

Best Laptop Cooling Pad: TeckNet Laptop Cooling Pad

What We Like
  • Budget friendly

  • Two built-in USB ports

  • Quiet

What We Don't Like
  • Reports of DOA units

Nothing kills a gaming session faster than an overheated laptop shutting down in the middle of a firefight or crucial boss battle. The TeckNet Laptop Cooling Pad is here to help with that. Whether you’re harvesting crops in Stardew Valley or flushing out enemies in Rainbow Six: Siege, this cooling pad diverts heat emissions away from your laptop to keep everything running at optimal temperatures. 

The dual 110mm fans blow waste heat down and away from crucial computer components, assisting your laptop’s built-in vent fans. The top of the pad is made of a metal mesh that acts as a heat sink to pull even more hot air away from your computer. It also features a rubberized, anti-slip strip to help keep your laptop in place, and there are also four non-slip feet on the bottom of the pad to keep it secure on almost any surface.

The pad is powered by a USB connection, and has two USB 2.0 ports built-in so you can integrate more peripherals like mice, keyboards, and headsets with your laptop for both casual and hardcore gaming sessions.

Best LED Light Kit: Pangton Villa 6.5-foot LED Backlight Kit

What We Like
  • Easy setup

  • USB power

  • Remote control

What We Don't Like
  • No Bluetooth or Wi-Fi capabilities

  • Does not react to music or sound

  • Reports of DOA units

While a lot of gamers are using RGB-lit components in their computer builds, some are extending that to their offices and media rooms. With 16 different colors and four lighting modes, the Pangton Villa LED light strips are perfect for adding a personal touch to gaming spaces. You get three strips of bright LED lights to create custom lighting configurations, and they can be combined with more kits for even more lighting options. 

These lights are ideal for providing backlighting to PC monitors, televisions, and even mood lighting for almost any room. You can change colors and light modes on the fly with the included remote control. The lights are USB powered, so you never have to worry about dead batteries or configuring the strips around available wall outlets; simply plug them into your PC tower or television for instant illumination. Each strip features self-adhesive backing for a hassle-free setup, and the LED bulbs are rated for up to 40,000 hours of use.

Best Gaming Glasses: Gunnar Optiks Intercept Glasses

What We Like
  • Reduces eye strain

  • Patented design

  • Lightweight and durable

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • May be uncomfortable to wear with bulky headsets or for those with larger heads

Whether you’re a hardcore or casual gamer, your weekly screen time is likely in the dozens of hours. The Intercept computer glasses by Gunnar Optiks have a patented design to block UV and blue spectrum light and reduce eye strain. The lenses are amber-tinted to block up to 65 percent of blue spectrum light produced by PC monitors, televisions, and mobile devices; the amber tinting also helps to sharpen color contrast for greater picture detail and easier to read text. 

They also are specifically designed to reduce glare from screens and feature a scratch-resistant coating to stand up to daily use. The frames are made of lightweight polycarbonate and ergonomically designed for all-day comfort. The Intercept glasses also sit close to your face to reduce unwanted airflow and prevent dry eyes even during the longest gaming sessions. Not only are these glasses great for marathon gaming sessions, but they’re also fantastic for taking to the office for everyday work.

Best Gaming Headset: Runmus Gaming Headset

What We Like
  • Budget friendly

  • Compatible with multiple devices

  • Built-in mic

What We Don't Like
  • May need an adapter for use with some consoles

  • Reports of broken audio cables

Anyone who plays games knows that a headset can make or break a session; choppy chat or static-filled audio can ruin an otherwise perfect streak. The Runmus gaming headset promises to deliver crystal clear chat and game audio, which makes sense considering its 50mm drivers provide simulated 7.1 surround sound and directional audio. You'll hear every footstep and grenade toss for that extra edge. The ear cups and headband are made with soft memory foam that yields lasting comfort during even the most grueling marathon game sessions. 

The headband is also self-adjusting, so it fits almost anyone and can be comfortably used with gaming glasses or other eyewear. The headset includes a built-in, omnidirectional microphone that works to filter background audio and white noise for clear, delay-free game chat. The seven-foot audio cable features a knit-weave coating that gives it long-lasting durability. The headset is also compatible with a variety of consoles, computers, and mobile devices, eliminating the need for multiple headphones and mics.

Best Gaming Mouse Pad: SteelSeries QcK+ Gaming Mousepad

What We Like
  • Budget friendly

  • Non-slip

  • Optimized for laser and optical mice

What We Don't Like
  • Some mice may not work as well with the pad

  • Reports of fraying weave

Just like headsets, a mouse pad is another accessory that is crucial for gaming. The SteelSeries QcK+ gaming mouse pad is the perfect choice for folks who play a variety of games. For almost 15 years, the SteelSeries QcK+ mouse pad has been the preferred choice for both casual gamers and esports pros. The pad features a micro-woven cloth top that is optimized for both laser and optical mice and superior DPI tracking. This makes the pad well-suited for precision-heavy games like first-person shooters and battle royales. 

The cloth top is hand washable to keep it in perfect competitive condition. The mouse pad measures 17.72 inches long and 15.75 inches wide, making it a wonderful choice for folks who need plenty of room for moving their mouse around. Whether you're playing Call of Duty or working in Photoshop, this mouse pad provides plenty of space to work. The pad also has a non-slip, rubberized backing that keeps it firmly in place so there isn’t any accidental movement in crucial moments.

Best Gaming Chair: GTRacing Gaming Chair

What We Like
  • Ergonomic

  • Adjustable lumbar and headrest cushions

  • Durable frame

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Reports of weak caster wheels

  • Reports of weak seam stitching

Whether you’re a full-time streamer or just passionate about games, proper support and comfort are crucial during long or repeated play sessions. The GTRacing gaming chair is the perfect balance between style and substance. The durable metal frame can support up to 300 pounds while the ample padding provides hours of comfort. Both armrests and the seat back are fully adjustable so you can find that perfect set up for both work and play. 

The chair features an adjustable height lumbar cushion and a removable headrest pillow for customizable support. It also has a five-point base with caster wheels for easy movement around a desk or office. The outer layer of the chair is made of durable and stylish faux leather, and it comes in a range of colors to suit almost any personality. The GTRacing gaming chair is backed by a one year warranty and a 30-day replacement guarantee.