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Joystiq Holidaze: best of Black Friday

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Stuffed full of poultry, pork, potatoes, pie and gravy you rise from your food coma dazed, angry, and ready to shop. It's still dark outside. Welcome to Black Friday.

We've trimmed the fat and cut the crap, bringing you the gaming highlights from the retail world's annual sale. Remember, the best shopper is an armed a prepared shopper. Use this guide to target the needs of your whiny loved ones, while avoiding bold-lettered traps (Joytip: It's no bargain price if you're cleaning out retail garbage). This year's sales favor Xbox 360 products, though there are valuable savings in the PlayStation 3 department. As for PSP? Not so much (actually, none at all). And only a few Nintendo-brand listings pop out (Joytip: Unless you're camping on the concrete, ignore Wii bundle listings; the console will be as scarce as ever).

This Joystiq guide focuses on brick and mortar retailers (Amazon's Black Friday listings are here) and only includes our recommendations. (Joytip: Each image is linked to additional information about the corresponding product). Please use the comments section to share additional deals you've discovered!



Hardware
  • Joytip: Avoid retailer-assembled bundles that force you to buy games & accessories you don't want
  • Joytip: Don't purchase retailers' replacement plans; manufacturers have solid built-in warranties -- especially Nintendo
Xbox 360:
  • pro value bundleXbox 360 Pro Value Bundle (w/ Forza 2 & Marvel Alliance) & 2 games (choice of: Halo 3, Assassin's Creed, Call of Duty 4, or SmackDown! vs. RAW)
    FYE - $419.97 [after $50 mail-in rebate]
  • gh2Xbox 360 Pro Bundle
    Best Buy - $349.99 [free Guitar Hero 2 bundle]
  • halo 3 consoleHalo 3 Xbox 360 & Halo 3 game
    Target - $459.98 [$60 gift card]
  • xboxXbox 360 & migrate paid Xbox LIVE subscription (for original Xbox) to Xbox LIVE Gold
    Any retailer - price varies [free Halo 3]
    Offer expires 12/21/07
  • heroesXbox 360 HD DVD drive
    Wal-Mart - $179.99 [free Heroes Season 1 HD DVD/DVD Set]
  • hd dvd driveXbox 360 HD DVD drive
    Any retailer - $179.99 [5 free HD DVD movies; mail-in form]
    Offer expires 2/28/08

PlayStation 3:
  • ps340GB or 80GB PlayStation 3
    BJ's - $299.99/399.99 [$100 instant rebate]
  • 80gb ps380GB PlayStation3
    Wal-Mart - $499 [10 free Blu-ray movies of choice]
  • blu-rayAny model PlayStation 3
    Any retailer - price varies [5 free Blu-ray movies; form]
    Offer expires 2/29/08

Nintendo DS:
  • zelda dsDS Lite Zelda/Nintendogs bundles
    Circuit City - $139.99 [save $10]
  • nintendogs dsDS Lite Zelda/Nintendogs bundles
    FYE - $129.99 [after $20 mail-in rebate]

PlayStation 2:
  • ps2PlayStation 2
    FYE - $99.99 [after $30 mail-in rebate]
  • ps2PlayStation 2
    GameStop - $129.99 [receive $30 gift card]
  • Joytip: If you're really in the market for a PS2, why not hold out for the new model?

Software
Xbox 360:
  • assassin's creedAssassin's Creed
    Circuit City - $59.99 [receive $10 gift card]
  • cod2Call of Duty 2
    Circuit City - $9.99 [save $20]
  • cod4Call of Duty 4
    Target - $48 [save $11.99]
  • gearsGears of War
    Target - $38 [save $21.99]
  • graw2Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2
    Best Buy - $20 [save $20]
  • gh2Guitar Hero 2 bundle (includes guitar)
    Circuit City; Kmart; Sears - $59.99 [save $30]
  • halo 3Halo 3
    Circuit City - $59.99 [receive $10 gift card]
  • orange boxOrange Box
    Kmart - $39.99 [save $20]
  • pgr4Project Gotham Racing 4
    Circuit City - $44.99 [save $15]
  • skateskate
    Target - $48 [save $11.99]

Wii:
  • mario galaxySuper Mario Galaxy
    Circuit City - $34.99 [save $15]

PlayStation 3:
  • assassin's creedAssassin's Creed
    Circuit City - $59.99 [receive $10 gift card]
  • cod4Call of Duty 4
    Target - $48 [save $11.99]
  • ratchet & clankRatchet & Clank Future
    Circuit City - $59.99 [receive $10 gift card]
  • skateskate
    Target - $48 [save $11.99]

Nintendo DS:
  • meteosMeteos: Disney Magic
    Toys R Us - $9.99 [save $10]

PlayStation 2:
  • bullyBully
    Circuit City - $9.99 [save $10]
    Joytip: Enhanced Xbox 360 & Wii ports are in the works
  • madden 08All EA Sports 08 games
    Wal-Mart - $19.88 ea. [save $10.11]
  • gh3Guitar Hero III bundle (includes guitar)
    Circuit City - $89.99 [receive $10 gift card]

Accessories
  • gamapadXbox 360 Wireless Controller
    Kmart - $39.99 [save $10]
  • headsetXbox 360 Wireless Headset
    Target - $48 [save $11.99]
  • remotePS3 Blu-ray Remote
    GameStop - $9.99 [save $15]
  • Joytip: Don't waste $$$ on brick-n-mortar stores' overpriced HDMI cables, shop for cheaper options online: HDMI cables (Amazon) -- anyone'll do, really
  • Joytip: Avoid 'cooling systems' like Nyko's infamous Intercooler
  • Joytip: Plastic extensions don't make Wii Sports more fun (but if you must, be less of a sucker by buying the Sports Pack at Circuit City for the $9.99 sale price)
  • Joytip: Consider switching to AA rechargeable batteries for all applicable accessories (they offer longer playtime than battery packs)

Dumpster Diving
  • gamestopBuy two used games or accessories, get one free
    GameStop - prices vary [buy 2, get 1 free]
  • kbtoysEntire stock of games is buy one, get one free [limit 4 free games]
    KBtoys - prices vary [buy 1, get 1 free]

Links to Store Locators

Bonus: Fanboy's Recommend

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