The holidays are the perfect time to spend gaming, with more free time, great multiplayer events and the release of the newest titles.
However, some developers make gaming over the holidays even better by placing holiday celebration Easter eggs in their games.
From social, relaxed multiplayer events to sleigh-straddling Santas dropping bombs on your enemies, here are the coolest holiday celebrations in video games:
World of WarCraft and other MMOs
Let’s start off with the most obvious candidate first, World of WarCraft.
While all Massive Multiplayer Online games feature virtual holiday celebrations with other players, World of WarCraft is the biggest of them all, and has had a history of fantastic holiday events, from Christmas to Halloween.
Other MMORPGs do a fairly good job of holiday celebration however, with my personal favourite being Lord of the Rings Online.
Team Fortress 2, CS:GO, and Dota 2
Valve’s online multiplayer games always have great content lined up for major holidays, with an assortment of Easter eggs and unique game modes.
At the very least, players are gifted themed cosmetic items, which is one of the biggest aspects of Valve’s game lineup.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
The PC version of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare features a somewhat violent Christmas Easter egg.
For Christmas day, the “Crash” level is replaced with “Winter Crash” and redecorated with Christmas lights and a massive Christmas tree.
The main highlight however, is that when an airstrike is called, Santa rains down lethal, exploding Christmas presents onto the target area from his sleigh.
The developers of Fallout 4 added special events for both Christmas and Halloween.
Diamond City, the game’s central hub, becomes littered with decorations pertaining to each holiday, including trees and lights for Christmas, and Pumpkins and spooky decorations for Halloween.
Interestingly, these events don’t co-incide with the real dates of Christmas and Halloween, but rather the in-game date.
Grand Theft Auto V
Grand Theft Auto Online has become a game in its own right, and remains wildly popular years after the release of Grand Theft Auto V.
This is largely due the constant content updates and events delivered by Rockstar, including various holiday events.
The game’s previous holiday events allowed plays to play around with snowballs and dangerous firework launchers.
The Sims 1
Many of the Sims games had festive Easter Eggs and various in-game events, although the first game’s celebration was the best.
The Sims 1 allowed you to build a Christmas tree, which then summoned Santa Claus, who explored your property, leaving presents and searching for milk and cookies.
Sid Meier’s Pirates!
Although it’s not exactly an international public holiday, Talk Like a Pirate Day is a real holiday that deserves to be celebrated, and I can’t be convinced otherwise.
Luckily, the folks behind Sid Meier’s Pirates agree with this sentiment, and if you start up the game on 19 September, you will be treated to text and voice acting that sounds far more piratey than even the original game.