The best gaming systems

'Tis the season for gaming! Get the lowdown on the best gaming systems for your family.

By Nadine Silverthorne
The best gaming systems

The best gaming systems

Latest and greatest video game systems

Considering a new video game console to entertain your family through the dark winter months and beyond? We compared the top sellers to help you decide which one to get!

A version of this article appeared in our November issue with the headline "Toy Guide: Video Games — All Systems Go," pp. 114.

The best gaming systemsPhoto: wibs24/iStockphoto

Wii U

Cost: 8GM Basic, $300; 32GB Deluxe $350

Best for: Families, Wii fans, those who need to have the next big thing

Comes with: Game Pad and Wii U sensor bar. Nintendo Land game and Game Pad charging cradle come with deluxe edition only

Pros: In beautiful HD, this system debuts the Game Pad controller, which allows kids to play on the Game Pad upstairs while Mom flips channels on the TV downstairs. 

Cons: More expensive than the Wii.
Where to Buy?

The best gaming systems


XBOX 360 with Kinect

Cost: 4GB Kinect family bundle, $300; 250GB Kinect bundle, $400

Best for: Serious gamers. 

Comes with: One wireless controller, Kinect sensor and one game or more depending on the bundle. 

Pros: The interface turns your console into a media hub, with access to streamable movies and tv shows. 

Cons: The Kinect sensors don't always scan and display smaller kids correctly. 
Where to Buy?

The best gaming systems


Cost: Around $150

Best for: Families with young children and dipping a toe in the gaming waters

Comes with: One Wii Remote Plus and nunchuck.

Pros: A multitude of games offered for kids of all ages. With the advent of the Wii U, we expect prices for the Wii to come down. 

Cons: It doesn't display in HD and has limited data storage space. 
Where to Buy?

The best gaming systems

Sony PlayStation 3

Cost: 160GB, $250; 320GB, $300

Best for: Families looking for an all-in-one entertainment unit to store photos, music, video and more. 

Comes with: One DualShock 3 wireless controller, the 320GB console includes games like NHL 13. 

Pros: This system has a built-in Blu-ray player and can hold thousands of songs, videos and games. 

Cons: There isn't a lot of variety in games for kids under age six. 
Where to Buy?

The best gaming systems


More holiday ideas

The best gaming systemsPhoto: Pop Chart Lab
This article was originally published on Oct 22, 2012

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