Serious gamers are notorious for spending extended hours immersed in their favorite pastimes. That fact has created a robust market for products that enhance comfort, reduce fatigue, and promote healthy posture. Here are some of our favorite categories for the 2022 holiday season.
The right chair is perhaps the most important accessory for most gamers. They make the experience all the better due to numerous adjustable features like armrests, tilt, height, plus headrests, and lumbar support. Many gaming chairs offer an eye-grabbing design that helps set the atmosphere for exciting play.
Secretlab is a leading maker, and their top-of-the-line TITAN Evo 2022 is impressive. It’s available in three sizes, three fabric choices, and five color schemes. It features a patent-pending built-in lumbar support system that moves up, down, in, and out. It also has a comfortable magnetic head pillow that doesn’t require straps to hold it in place.
Another favorite is the Anda Seat Kaiser 3XL. It comes in two sizes and nine color options. Like the Secretlab, it, too, has built-in, adjustable lumbar support and a magnetic pillow.
Second, only to a great chair, a high-quality desk will make your customers’ gaming experience better. Though generally thought of in terms of office work, stand up desks can be great for gamers as well because of the flexibility they afford.
Of fixed-height desks, the Arozzi Arena Gaming Desk is an excellent choice. It’s a big, sturdy, and yes, heavy desk and those are the attributes we like best. At 63 inches wide and 31.5 inches deep, it has enough room for all the accessories anyone’s likely to have. Its heft feels solid, and the legs are steel. The entire table surface is covered with a microfiber mousepad.
Gaming Keyboard and Mouse Combos
Gaming enthusiasts control the action using their keyboard and mouse and for serious players, the run-of-the-mill devices we use for word processing and personal account fall short of their high-performance needs. Though many choose mice and keyboards independently, there’s a lot to be said for devices that are built to work together.
The Redragon K580 VATA keyboard plus the M913 mouse will meet just about anyone’s needs at a pretty reasonable price. The wired keyboard is made of plastic but has an aluminum top plate that limits flex. Keys are mechanical and individually RGB backlit. There are five macro keys and multimedia can be controlled by dedicated play, pause, and skip keys.
The mouse can be used wired or wirelessly. It features 12 programable side buttons making it ideal for MMO play.
Virtual Reality (VR) is a natural extension of the ongoing search for the best possible video performance in gaming. Though there’s still room for improvement, the 3D graphics of top-notch systems is amazing. It’s really the closest thing to being physically involved in the gaming universe. Indeed, VR headsets are usually used by gamers who are standing and moving around in their virtual universe.
The best VR headset available today is the Valve Index. Its 1440 x 1660 LCD displays provide astonishingly clear video with a phenomenal 130-degree field of view (FOV). Audio is a special treat with two built-in speakers that don’t actually touch the ears. This design is not only more comfortable than conventional earphones but gives sonic realism that seems natural. But the cost is a notable drawback for this system as it’s priced more than twice as high as the formidable Meta Quest 2.
Meta is the parent company of Oculus so the new name may not be as familiar as the Oculus Quest 2 but it’s the same thing. The setup of the Quest 2 is remarkably straightforward. It’s completely wireless and doesn’t even require tethering to a computer. Given its high-performance coupled with a more affordable price, it gets our recommendation as the best VR headset system for most people.
As intriguing as VR is, most gaming is still going to be played on a monitor. That being the case, there’s no viable reason to build a high-performance gaming rig and then skimp on the monitor. Our colleagues at Tom’s Guide have tested the best gaming monitors available and found the Razer Raptor 27 to be the best overall.
The Razer Raptor 27 delivers stunning visuals with its QHD (Quad High Definition), 2560×1440 resolution and up to 165Hz refresh rate. It’s also been certified by THX for visual clarity. A particularly appealing feature of this monitor is its ability to recline backward to 90 degrees flat which exposes the bottom-mounted display ports for easy access.
Android and iOS Controllers
In this article, we’ve emphasized gaming using PCs but there’s a very legitimate place in the game world for mobile devices. Many people are dedicated to playing on their phones but there are some irritating drawbacks. Using a touchscreen is not terribly satisfying with its lack of haptic feedback and the reality that your customers cover much of the action with their hands during play.
That’s where add-on gaming controllers for smartphones come in. They’re designed to serve as a mount for phones and effectively turn the top and bottom edges into a competitive, handheld device.
Our favorite among the many contenders is the Razer Kishi V2. It’s stable and comfortable to use and there’s virtually no lag due to its direct connection to the phone via the charging connection. And it now has compatible versions for both iPhone and Android devices. Its layout will be familiar to any handheld game user and its controls include two clickable thumbsticks, a mechanical D-pad, AXBY buttons, two triggers, and two programable macro buttons.
No comprehensive listing includes all the exciting accessories which are coveted by serious gamers but this snapshot of some of the most desirable devices is a good place to start. New entries are coming virtually every day.
See also: Why Gaming Matters To Retailers