Don’t miss out on all of NerdWallet’s highly anticipated 2016 Black Friday ad leaks this season. Check back regularly for updates on the best holiday deals from your favorite retailers. Black Friday is Nov. 25.
Video games are typically hot ticket items for Black Friday, and 2016 is no different. Popular gaming brands PlayStation and Xbox both have new console releases this year, so dedicated gamers will have their eyes peeled for the best specials retailers have to offer.
Not to be left out, Nintendo is offering plenty of deals too. The company may not have a new device to compete with those from PlayStation and Xbox, but has seen a boost in its gaming relevance thanks to the smartphone app for the game “Pokemon Go.”
To get you ready before Black Friday rolls around, we’ve compiled a list outlining the popular video game consoles, what they do and approximate pre-sale prices. After you’ve scoped out the models, scroll down to see the best deals on each model in this year’s Black Friday sale.
Since its 2013 release, the original PlayStation 4, or PS4, has been the gaming brand’s standard console. But in 2016, PlayStation announced new versions dubbed the PS4 Pro and PS4 Slim. In addition to the new consoles, the brand introduced its first virtual reality headset, the PlayStation VR.
- PlayStation4 Pro: The console boasts upgraded graphics and gameplay, plus 4K-quality video for Blu-ray Discs and compatible streaming subscriptions, such as Netflix and HBO Now. The console houses 1 terabyte of internal storage. The Pro is scheduled to be released Nov. 10.
Price: $399.99 through select retailers.
- PS4 Slim: This model has similar upgrades to those of the PS4 Pro, but the Slim edition is smaller and comes with 500 gigabytes memory storage.
Price: $299.99 for the “Uncharted” gaming bundle, available at stores such as Amazon and Target.
- PlayStation VR: Gamers must already have a PS4 console and the PlayStation Camera attachment to use the PlayStation VR. The headset is compatible with some current PlayStation games such as “Star Wars: Battlefront.” Check out how the PlayStation VR compares to Samsung’s Oculus Rift in our product comparison.
Price: $399.99 by itself, $499.99 in a bundle at select retailers.
The 2013 Xbox One console remained popular with multiplayer online games such as “Gears of War 4” and “Battlefield 1.” In 2016, Xbox announced the follow-up to the standard Xbox One model with the Xbox One S. Upgrades include:
- 40% smaller than the first-generation Xbox One.
- 2TB internal storage; 500GB or 1TB consoles are available via special edition game bundles such as “Halo” collection and “Madden NFL 17.”
- Boost in visuals with improved graphics and 4K-video support for compatible video streaming and Blu-ray discs.
- All Xbox One S packages come with one wireless Xbox controller; vertical stand comes with the 2TB edition.
Price: 2TB console $399; special edition bundles start at $299 for 500GB storage, $349 for 1TB storage.
Nintendo’s tried-and-true consoles are the Wii U and the handheld 3DS XL.
- Wii U: Includes one gamepad controller and the console that connects to your TV. The gamepad provides players various ways to interact within Wii U games, including a touch-screen controller and a secondary gameplay window. The Wii U can also connect online to browse the internet or use streaming services such as YouTube and Netflix.
Price: Starting at $299.99 for deluxe set gaming bundles.
- 3DS XL: The 3DS XL is a dual-screen handheld device. The XL can support games from previous DS models (3DS and 2DS), and the newest games are compatible with the 3-D viewing feature. The handheld can also connect to Wi-Fi so users can browse the web and watch YouTube videos.
Price: Starting at $199.99.
Be mindful — your generous gift list might result in a bit of credit card balance. In the 2015 holiday season, 44% of American shoppers incurred debt and took about two months to pay it off. If you’re part of this crowd, make sure to avoid paying interest with the right credit card. NerdWallet’s list of best credit cards for holiday shopping includes cards with 0% interest periods that may last from 9 to 21 months. There are plenty of reasons to stress over the holidays; don’t let credit card interest be one of them.
Best Black Friday Video Game Console Deals 2016
Gamers are ready to race to stores to snag Black Friday deals on popular video game consoles. Deals are similar from store to store, especially on Xbox and PlayStation consoles, and shoppers can also save big on game titles and accessories. Some are doorbusters only or restricted to in-store purchase; check the retailers for specifics. Here, we outline the best holiday deals you can expect to find during Black Friday sales.
Xbox One and Xbox One S
Xbox fans looking for the newest Xbox One S can find the console bundled with a video game, either “Minecraft” or “Battlefield 1” depending on the store. BJ’s Wholesale Club, and GameStop sold just the “Minecraft” edition, whereas Wal-Mart has only the “Battlefield 1” bundle available; Best Buy, Target and Toys R Us offer both packages. The 500GB bundles are selling for $249.99 at each of these stores ($50 off) and the 1TB “Battlefield 1” model (found only at Best Buy) is available for $299.99 — for $50 in savings.
GameStop is the only retailer we found carrying the Xbox One S 1TB “Gears of War 4” bundle, for $299.99 ($50 savings). The video game retailer also is offering pre-owned consoles for $219.99, plus used Xbox One Kinect sensors for $39.99 (regularly $59.99).
Xbox accessories and games
Games and accessories for the Xbox consoles are also featured in the retailers’ Black Friday events. Here are some of the best deals we found:
- Best Buy: Buy select video game titles for $29.99 (regularly $59.99) and receive three months of Xbox Live Gold for $4.99 (regularly $24.99). Also, pick up select Xbox One titles starting at $19.99.
- GameStop: Save up to $30 on select Xbox One game titles, including “Skyrim,” “Madden NFL 17,” “Battlefield 1” and more. Shoppers can also buy three select pre-owned Xbox One video games for $20 (or $9.99 each).
- Target: Purchase select Xbox video games for $8 to $29 (up to 50% off), or Xbox One controllers for $39.99 (save $20).
- Toys R Us: Save $10 to $25 on select Xbox video game titles. Online players can snag a three-month Xbox Live Gold membership for $14.99 (regularly $24.99).
Similar to 2015, the PlayStation 4 was often bundled with “Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End.” Best Buy, BJ’s Wholesale Club, GameStop, Target and Toys R Us all carried this bundle for $249.99 (regularly $299.99).
GameStop’s “Uncharted” bundle deal is available only on Friday, but the retailer sports some of the best deals for pre-owned consoles. Shoppers can save when they purchase a used 500GB PlayStation 4 for $224.99 or a PlayStation 3 Slim for $119.99 ($20 savings).
Here are some of the best PlayStation games and accessories deals featured in Black Friday sales:
- Best Buy: PlayStation camera for $29.99 (save $30).
- GameStop: Save up to $30 on select PS4 games, including “Guitar Hero” party edition, “Grand Theft Auto V,” “WWE 2K17” and more; or three for $20 (or $9.99 each) on select pre-owned PS4 game titles.
- Target: Select PS4 game titles for $8 to $29 (50% off), and PS4 controllers for $39.99 (save $20).
- Wal-Mart: Find “Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare” legacy edition for $57 (regularly $79.88) and “Guitar Hero” two-pack for PS4 for $49 (regularly $79).
The newest edition of the Nintendo 3DS handheld was available for $99.99 at stores such as Target, Wal-Mart, Best Buy, GameStop and Toys R Us. The device usually retails for $199.99. Target also offered select 3DS game titles for $25 (regularly $39.99).
Best Black Friday Video Game Console Deals 2015
Most 2015 Black Friday video game console specials were offered as package deals:
A handful of retailers packaged the PlayStation 4 with “Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection” as a Black Friday special. Shoppers eyeing the bundle had to take note on when the deals were available, as sale times varied from store to store, such as:
The Xbox One was sold either by itself or also bundled with games. Deals included:
- GameStop: Xbox One 500GB console at GameStop for $50 off ($299.99).
- Best Buy: Xbox One 500GB “Gears of War: Ultimate Edition” console bundle $50 off ($299.99) on Black Friday only.
- Kohl’s: Xbox One 500GB “The Lego Movie” gaming console bundle for $299.99, came with $75 in Kohl’s Cash, available until 1 p.m. on Black Friday.
The Nintendo Wii U and 3DS XL were available in a variety of deals, either sold on their own or packaged with a game:
- GameStop: Zelda “Hyrule” Edition new Nintendo 3DS XL $20 off ($199.99) through Sunday.
- Target: Wii U 32GB console $50 off ($249.99) including free digital downloads of “Splatoon” and “Super Smash Bros.”
GameStop, Target and Best Buy also offered the Nintendo 3DS XL for $179.99 ($20 savings) all day on Black Friday; Kohl’s offered the same deal, but it was valid only through 1 p.m. on Black Friday.
Check out our full list of 2016 ad leaks for up-to-date deal news from a wide range of retailers.
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