The Dorklyst: The 10 Merriest Santa Claus Cameos in Videogame History

By Andrew Bridgman / December 14, 2012

5. Sam & Max series

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Santa Claus has appeared a few times in the Sam & Max games, most notably in Ice Station Santa and The Tomb of Sammun-Mak. But this ain't your grandpa's Santa Claus! Or your dad's. Or yours, even. This is a pretty new take on ol' Papa Noel. He's a gun-toting, demon possession hating madman who has a taste for evil Jell-O. He even hates children – which, actually, makes a lot of sense, since being Santa means he only has to see them once a year. Actually, this version makes a lot more sense than ours. If our parents are going to lie to us, at least make the lie as cool as this.

4. World of Warcraft (Greatfather Winter)

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Even the denizens of Azeroth appreciate a little holiday cheer – enter Greatfather Winter, the Santa Claus stand-in for the world's most popular time-sucking MMO. Located in the dwarven city Ironforge (and only during the Feast of Winter Veil event), he'll put you on a quest to bring him some milk and cookies, for which you'll be handsomely rewarded with some gold, experience, and a surprise or two. But best of all, his yearly presence will remind you to maybe take a break from your six-month marathon session, take a shower, and get some gifts for your friends and family who you haven't seen since Mists of Pandaria came out.

3. Clay Fighter 63 ⅓

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Santa – as far as we know – is an immortal fat guy who lives in the LEAST hospitable place on the entire planet, has enslaved an entire race of elves, and is reincarnated each time he's murdered (unless The Santa Clause led me astray). In essence, the guy is pretty much the ultimate badass. So it stands to reason he should be in a fighting game, in a sumo outfit, laying the smackdown against snowmen, cyborg rabbits, and even Earthworm Jim. It doesn't matter if you're naughty or nice, because you're getting a pretty much naked Santa Claus no matter what.

2. The Sims: Living Large / The Sims 2: Holiday Party Pack

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Santa appears in two Sims games – in the Livin' Large expansion for the original Sims, and in the Holiday Party Pack for The Sims 2. In each, he is summoned in pretty much the same way: set up a Christmas tree near a fireplace and set out some cookies. Get to bed nice 'n early, and St. Nick will sneak in. But it's in The Sims 2 that he's way more entertaining: he leaves presents (or coal, if all the cookies are gone), you can interact with him (and even become friends), and he'll constantly use your toilet (hey, he's travelling around the world, eating more cookies and milk than should be possible without contracting ultra-diabetes). Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to drown him in your swimming pool, so there goes 90% of the reasons you were playing The Sims to begin with.

1. Toejam & Earl

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Few games capture the raw fun and excitement of receiving presents during the holidays as well as Toejam & Earl – who did it by making you receive actual presents with unknown contents inside. And where presents with horrifying and dangerous objects inside are, such as rocket skates and DEATH itself, ol' Saint Nick can't be far away. You could find Santa hiding out in most levels in a disguise of glasses and overalls. If you came too close to him without sneaking, he would notice you, switch back to Santa Claus-mode, and fly away on his jetpack. But if you managed to sneak up on him successfully, he would drop some additional presents from his bag, and then fly off in a jetpack. Presents and jetpacks: the true meaning of Christmas.

*BONUS* Binding of Isaac (Krampus)

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In Christmas lore – there is a beast in the Alps known as "Krampus" – and where Santa rewards children's good behavior, Krampus is out there to punish the bad kids (and not with some stupid lump of coal neither – he shoves them in a sack and carries them off to his mountain lair, where they are never heard from again). And in the great, weird game The Binding of Isaac, ol Saint Krampus makes a special appearance in the Devil Room – and beating him actually does give you a lump of coal. Except here, lumps of coal are actually pretty useful. Actually, coal is pretty useful in real life too. Get some coal, go grill some burgers. So whether you're naught or nice, it's actually pretty win-win.

Filed Under   christmas   the dorklyst   dorklyst   santa claus   holidays
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