By Spencer . January 2, 2006 . 11:00am
Instead of giving a top ten list of games that we liked this year, we thought we’d do something different. Each year game journalists are given tons of bonus goodies at events like E3 and directly from companies. I looked through my pile of schwag this year and picked out ten hip items I was lucky enough to get in 2005.
Read on to see the top schwag from 2005!
10. Super Mario Brothers retro stage
I got this appropriately at the i8abit retro art gallery. It’s a blocky stand up of the flagpole scene in World 1-1 from Super Mario Brothers. The stage not only looks cool, but it gets bonus points because Mario is held up by a magnet so you can position him on the flagpole.
9. Gyakuten Saiban stylus
What could be better than having Phoenix shout out objection and you using his finger to tap the screen? Seriously out of all the cool styli that I got this year this one is by far the coolest.
8. Dragon Quest slime
Square-Enix has really been pushing all of its promotional effort towards Dragon Quest VIII. Instead of giving us a stuffed Chocobo or traveling moogle E3 attendees got slimes this year. This was a bonus reward for checking out the thirty or so minutes of trailers featured in Square-Enix’s cinema show.
7. Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess DS trailer
While this is coveted by nearly every Zelda fan, once you have the actual item it isn’t that great. All that’s on this tiny DS cart is a low resolution version of the E3 Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess trailer. Yes, we know that it’s rare and only journalists that showed up to Nintendo’s conference got this. But all that’s on the cart is a trailer, which is entertaining for a few minutes. Still the collectors value of it puts this on the top schwag list.
6. Nine Tails Naruto memory card holder
While this can be used to hold a memory card behind Naruto, it didn’t make the top schwag list because of its practicality. Actually, it’s kind of useless as a memory card holder. However, since it’s a limited edition, Japan-only, Naruto collectable that looks really cool it made the list.
5. Xbox 360 Hoodie
Getting t-shirts from companies and game shows are pretty common, but at Zero Hour Microsoft one upped everyone by passing out hoodies. The hoodie also came in real handy when walking around in the freezing desert post 12AM at Zero Hour.
4. Resident Evil 4 Umbrella
This unique item is a huge two person umbrella that sports the Biohazard 4 logo on it. Capcom didn’t just handout cheap umbrellas either. This is deluxe toy has a button that you can push to pop the entire umbrella out, perfect for flash rainstorms. Bonus points go to this item for clever marketing. Umbrella corporation, Umbrella!
3. Katamari Prince cell phone indicator
Imagine you’re in a quiet business meeting and have your phone silenced. Instead of waiting for the phone to vibrate just look at the red ball on the Prince’s head. If it’s blinking someone’s calling you. This useful and awesome collectable jumps the schwag list because of its rarity. You could only pick it up at the Tokyo Game Show and a few lucky people got these as a preorder bonus when picking up Minna Daisuke Katamari Damacy.
2. Zero Hour 360 memory card signed by Cliff Bleszinski
Zero Hour was home to a lot of great gear, everyone that showed up picked up an Xbox 360 memory card to use to get the Zero Hour event as an achievement. The bonus was when I had a chance to meet Cliff during the Gears of War demo and asked if he would sign my memory card.
1. Tie! Signed copy of Sonic Mega Collection from creator Yuji Naka and signed copy of Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes from creator Hideo Kojima
This year I had a chance to meet the creator of Sonic the Hedgehog, Yuji Naka and Hideo Kojima of the famed Metal Gear series. Since I knew I was going to meet them and have a chance to talk to them, I brought games and a sharpie with me. Just my luck during separate chat sessions with them they signed games for me.