Best Valentine’s Ever!

It’s that time of year again; the time of year where couples are loathed and despised by the majority of singles who claim they are perfectly happy on their own whilst secretly setting up eHarmony profiles. And with this time of year comes the annual trauma of trying to find that perfect gift for your loved one (a trauma only made worse by the bloody recession – will it ever end?).

Valentine’s Day gifts are a funny thing. You start to receive them when you’re a young kid, too young to know better really, and they come in the form of whatever you find awesome at the time. Memorable Valentine’s from my early years included various bags of marbles, the conker to end all conkers and a whole lot of Pogs (a collection I still have squirrelled away in the attic today). But as time ticks on and we start to expect more, the gifts get worse and worse, ultimately ending up as the zero thought box of chocolates, petrol station flowers and, of course, a series of crappy figurines with a love theme. Luckily it seems like this is yet another one of life’s problem that can be solved by gaming.

This was once my dream Valentine's gift...
This was once my dream Valentine’s gift…

It may eliminate the imagination aspect of gift buying, but this year my husband is getting me exactly what I really want for Valentine’s Day – Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII (with the GAME preorder bonus of a Cloud outfit of course!). It may not seem like the most romantic present at a first glance but I challenge that: why give me some lovey-dovey piece of tat that I couldn’t care less about when he knows me well enough to get me exactly what I desire?

The beauty of a videogame gift is that you get to feel loved with every hour you play, so with a JRPG that’s a lot of time for me to feel soppy and romantic. Hell, the game even comes out on V-Day in the UK, so it was always destined to make a lot of gamers happy. Although that does mean I will inevitably have to stare impatiently out the window waiting for the postman.

This is what I'm doing on Valentine's day
This is what I’m doing on Valentine’s Day. How about you?

We’ve made a bit of a tradition of giving videogames as gifts and it seems to work for us. A week after we got together he bought me Tales of Vesperia for my birthday; a brilliant gift as a) it showed he was paying attention and b) it lasted forever. I’d only mentioned it casually once but he heard me loud and clear. It may blend into the background, just sitting on the shelf with all my other Xbox 360 titles, but to me it will always stand out. Likewise, I bought him GTA V on his last birthday, a game that proves longevity is key. No-one likes to shell out for a present that only occupies someone for a handful of hours. Not when some careful planning can mean a title that lasts for months instead.

I think the moral of the story is that anything can make a good Valentine’s gift whether it seems conventional or not, and if your girl is a gamer, convention is hardly going to be her middle name. It may seem a strange choice to get her a fast-paced shooter on a romantic day but if that’s what she honestly desires then go for it. Trust me, it will win you more brownie points than a trip to the cinema and a cuddly toy ever will and when she’s done with it you might just get to play it too.

“We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly.”



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