- The generation that grew up playing video games are growing older and starting families of their own, meaning more dads than ever are gamers too.
- We’ve put together a list of our favorite gifts for gamer dads this Father’s Day, with ideas that should fit any budget.
- See more: The 9 best video games for parents and kids to play together this Father’s Day
A generation of gamers have become parents and started families of their own, but that doesn’t mean they’re ready to give up their hobby. The video game industry has also been changing and finding new ways to keep gamer parents engaged as they balance family life and play time.
Whether the dad or father figure in your life is a hardcore gamer or just a casual player, we’ve collected a range of gift ideas you can give your gamer dad for Father’s Day this year.
Looking for more gift ideas? Find even more Father’s Day gift recommendations here. For introductory tech gifts, try one of these gift ideas for dads just getting into tech. If you’re searching for a gift on a budget, try one of these affordable tech gifts that are all under $100 each.
The hottest selling video game console on the market
Buy the Nintendo Switch Lite at Best Buy for $199.99
The Nintendo Switch is the fastest selling video game console in the world, and the new Switch Lite offers the same awesome library of games in a $199.99 portable package with yellow, coral, turquoise, and grey color options.
The Switch Lite will appeal most to dads who may already own a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One and want to play games with the same level of quality while the family TV is occupied or when they’re traveling.
Dad might also appreciate the chance to have a smaller personal gaming device he won’t have to share with the kids. The only drawbacks of the Switch Lite are its inability to connect to a larger TV, and its lack of removable controllers.
You can spend $100 more for the original Switch model to rectify those issues, though you wont get the same cool color options. Unfortunately, it’s currently hard to find the Switch Lite at many retailers, but new stock does get added from time to time.
A premium, personalized controller
Buy a Scuf Gaming controller at GameStop
Buy the Xbox Elite controller at Best Buy for $179.99
Scuf Gaming controllers offer a significant upgrade from the standard Xbox One and PlayStation 4 gamepads, bringing extra buttons, improved battery life, and customizable parts to the table.
Scuf controllers are well-known for their rear paddle buttons and interchangeable analog sticks, giving players additional control and customization options. You can also choose from a wide array of customizable face plates too, giving the controller the personal look you want in a gift. Scuf controllers are available from various retailers, like GameStop, and you can find even more options via the Scuf Gaming website.
Another option is an Xbox Elite Controller, which boasts rubber grips, USB-C charging and customizable parts too. Both the Scuf and the Xbox Elite controllers are compatible with Windows 10, Android, and iPhone via Bluetooth.
Microsoft has confirmed that the Xbox Elite Controller will be compatible with the new Xbox Series X too, so you won’t have to worry about this pricey device becoming obsolete when the next generation of video game consoles arrives.
A phone clip for his favorite controller
Buy the Power A mobile gaming clip at Best Buy for $14.99
It may seem like a cheap gift, but the practicality of a phone clip can open up the world for a busy dad who can’t find time to play games. The concept is simple — a clip will let your dad connect his phone to a controller of his choice so he can play games on the go without a TV.
Google and Apple updated Android and iOS software to connect with Xbox One and PlayStation 4 controllers more easily, making it easier for gamers to use their controller of choice when playing games on their phone. Whether your dad streams his PlayStation 4 screen to his iPhone or spends time playing “Call of Duty: Mobile” or “PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds” with a touch screen, an easy to use controller setup will definitely improve the experience.
Newly launched streaming video game platforms, like Google Stadia, Nvidia’s GeForce Now, and Microsoft’s Project xCloud, are making mobile gaming even more appealing, so even gamers who don’t always have access to the living room TV can play their favorite games with a simple setup like a phone clip.
A subscription service with more than 100 games
Buy an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription (three months) at Best Buy for $24.99
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate normally costs $15 per month, but Best Buy is currently offering three months for just $24.99. Game Pass Ultimate consists of three different services:
- Xbox Live Gold: a $10 a month online service required to play Xbox games online.
- Xbox Game Pass: a $10 a month subscription service that gives players access to more than 100 games on Xbox One.
- Xbox Game Pass for PC: a $5 a month subscription service that gives players access to dozens of games on PC.
That means an Ultimate subscription offers a $10 per month discount on the combined services. Much of the value comes from Game Pass, a service that has been commonly referred to as “Netflix for video games.”
If your dad already has a subscription to one of the services above, buying a Game Pass Ultimate subscription will automatically upgrade their account and extend the remaining amount of time left for up to three years.
If you’re considering buying a Game Pass subscription for a PC gamer, keep in mind that you only have to pay $5 per month for Game Pass alone, since the other services are for Xbox One owners only.
A streaming video game option for gamers who don’t own a console
Buy a PlayStation Now subscription (three months) at Best Buy for $19.99
PlayStation Now is a streaming video game service that lets you play games on your computer the same way you’d watch Netflix. PlayStation Now is available for $9.99 per month or $60 per year, giving subscribers access to more than 800 games on any Windows PC or PlayStation 4. A three-month subscription is now available for a discounted price of just $19.99.
For casual gamers who don’t have access to their own console or gaming PC, it can be an affordable option for playing dozens of hit games. The collection includes games from the PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation 4, but not the original PlayStation.
In October 2019, Sony lowered the price of PlayStation Now to match Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass, a subscription service that offers a similar library for Xbox-owners, but without the streaming option. PlayStation 4 users now have the option to download PS4 games directly from the collection too, instead of just streaming.
A new external drive to store more games
Buy the Western Digital 2 TB portable hard drive at Amazon for $59.99
Buy the SanDisk 256GB microSD memory card at Amazon for $39.99
Hit games, like “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare,” can use up to 100GB of space on a video game console or PC, so more storage space means more gaming without dad worrying if he has enough space for new games and updates.
The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One can both use external USB hard drives for additional storage, so buying a 1TB USB drive will double the amount of available space. The Nintendo Switch uses microSD cards for extra storage, which are even more affordable and offer a significant upgrade from the Switch’s 32GB of space.
A headset to help dad talk to teammates
Buy the HyperX Cloud Stinger headset at Amazon for $46.99
For gamers who spend hours playing team games like “Fortnite” and “Call of Duty” online, a gaming headset is an invaluable piece of equipment that could mean the difference between winning and losing.
Players who spend most of their time playing in their living room can still connect a headset to their controller or phone while playing with their console of choice and adjust the audio between the headset and speakers for their liking.
Even a budget headset, like the HyperX Cloud Stinger, can improve a player’s experience by leaps and bounds, since a proper headset will let them hear exactly where enemy players are approaching from, and proper noise cancellation will improve overall focus.
Not to mention the added benefits of being able to communicate comfortably with a dedicated headset, rather than using bluetooth headphones with delay or less effective earbuds.
A dedicated gaming monitor with better performance than the living room TV
Buy the Acer Predator 27″ gaming monitor at Amazon for $649.89
If your gamer dad has a dedicated PC or personal setup for his play time, consider helping him upgrade to a monitor with a high resolution and a high refresh rate. While big 4K smart TVs are built to deliver Netflix and other content at premium quality, they often lack the speed and accuracy needed to play video games with the best possible performance.
Gaming monitors, like the Acer Predator series, offer fast response times so there’s minimal delay between what you see on the screen and how fast you react with your controller. This is especially important for competitive and online games.
High refresh rate monitors can offer a much smoother range of motion, especially for PC games. If you know your gamer dad spends lots of time on the PC, a high refresh rate screen could make a world of difference in his everyday play.
Just remember to pick a monitor size that fits his play area, since a huge 32″ screen or an ultrawide display won’t fit on every desk.
A standalone VR headset with no strings attached
Buy the Oculus Quest (128GB) at Best Buy for $499.00
If your dad already spends plenty of time gaming, consider introducing him to a whole new world of games with an Oculus Quest VR headset. Thanks to its built-in sensors, the headset works on its own without needing a phone or PC connected, and the Quest package includes a pair of motion controllers.
You do need access to the Oculus app for initial setup, but once your Quest is working and connected to Wi-Fi it can become a standalone entertainment system.
The headset provides another option for playing games or watching Netflix, and the Oculus store has a bunch of exclusive games and interactive experiences. The Quest can also be connected to a gaming PC to play hit VR games like “Half-Life: Alyx” that aren’t normally available on the Oculus platform.
A book about the ins and outs of the video game business
Buy “Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are Made” at Amazon for $11.79
“Blood, Sweat, and Pixels” offers a deep look into the video game industry and the efforts that go into producing a hit game. Bloomberg reporter Jason Schreier offers inside stories from the development teams behind popular games, like “The Witcher 3” and “Uncharted 4,” describing the challenges and highlights of working in the video game business with great detail.
The book is a must-read for any longtime gamer, and provides unmatched insight on how games are made. If you think your gamer dad might enjoy a more visual book, you should also consider buying an artbook showing off designs from his favorite video game franchise, like “The Legend of Zelda” or “The Last of Us.”