If there's ever time for a spot of gaming, it's at Christmas. Treat your PC and stave off boredom with one of these top games.
To describe Spore as a god game would be to undermine its evolutionary foundations, but it kind of is. You start as a plankton-like creature and try to evolve into a galaxy-conquering super-species.
What they’ve done here is to take the ancient Colonization Civ update and remake it using the sparkling Civ 4 engine. If your dad’s into PC games, this will see him through the whole of 2009.
If you’d rather get involved with the tactics, team selection and horse-trading than actually play the game, Football Manager is your best bet, and it now has new 3D graphics. Also on Mac and PSP.
PC gamers have had to wait six months for GTA IV, but these sprawling, open cities always work better on a PC. Crank your graphics card up to max and surf a one-man crimewave around Liberty City.
Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 £35
The third in the Red Alert series adds more weapons, more abilities and more cheesy cut scenes, and still somehow works. The brilliant co-op mode is where this game really shines.
For more gift ideas check out our stocking fillers and festive top 10s.