What do you want for Christmas, Xav?

It's the question that can slam the brakes on the holiday spirit; it stopped poor Ralphie dead in his tracks in that fateful moment when he finally got to Santa. "What do you want for Christmas?" So, to help make this the hap-hap-happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap danced with Danny Kaye, the Shacknews editors present some of our answers for this holiday season to help you be ready for when you get put on the spot during the 2011 Holiday Season. When I wind up with gift cards, I'll go get... Since purchasing Amazon's Kindle Fire, I've been on a a tear adding to my ebook collection. I'd tell my family to grab me some Amazon gift cards this year and pick up some new reading material (great for those five hour flights back to Toronto.) Right now, I'm enjoying the Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson. Taking advantage of the Kindle Fire, I'm also reading a handful of graphic novels. I've revisited the amazing Y: The Last Man, Batman: The Long Halloween, Fables, and All Star Superman.

Zoom's H4n Handy Portable Digital Recorder

If I hadn't already broken down and gotten it, I'd have to say... I'm going a little thematic with my picks from here on out. One question I get a lot when meeting readers or fans of the podcast is 'How do you get into the games reporting business?' It's a hard question to answer, but there are some essentials I must have with me at all times to do this job. Zoom's H4n Handy Portable Digital Recorder is one of those essentials. It's on the pricey side for voice recorders, but this bad boy can do a lot more than that. Hook up multiple mics and you have a portable podcast studio on your hands. Speak into it and you can record studio-quality voice overs for video features. It handles crowded rooms with ease, so you don't lose that important interview to a noisy environment. It might be pricey, but it has saved me on a bunch of occasions and I adore the thing.

Moleskine Writing Gift Box Set

If my friend asks, I'd say... My friends and I typically set price maximums for holiday gift giving. Sure, for our usual max of $40 I could get a few older games... but I like something a little more personal. Moleskine notebooks are usually a hit with me. I burn through a ton of these things every year, taking notes at press events and jotting down ideas on the fly. The art of writing is dying with so many ways to write without using a pen or pencil, so it's nice to sit back and actually take notes from time-to-time. It never runs out of batteries, there are no other apps on it to distract you. It's just your ideas and a piece of paper. Maybe one day soon I'll finally finish that novel I've been working on. BOOM video 9075 If my family asks, I'd say... A voice recorder and notebooks? Okay, let's get this back on track to actual games. Although I've been putting too many hours I'm comfortable admitting into The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, there was another role-playing game that I played this year that deserves a lot of attention. The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings is an amazing adventure, and I'm still venturing through it. I already picked the game up at launch, yes, but I only purchased the standard version from Good Old Games. I'm somewhat of a fool when it comes to special editions, so I'd probably have to get the big, physical collector's box at some point. My parents are pretty good about finding stuff online, so it would be an easy item for them to procure and it would make that empty spot on my shelves so much happier.