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This Year's Best Collector's Editions

This year set a new bar for elaborate and over-the-top special editions of video games. Take a look back at the best collector's editions of the year, plus some cool bundles that are still to come.

To keep things simple, the collector's editions are listed chronologically by their release date. Check out the grand total at the end to see how much a year's worth of awesome collector's editions would set you back.

LittleBigPlanet 2 Collector's Edition
Format: PS3
Price: $79.99
Release: January 18

LittleBigPlanet fans got even more charm than they bargained for with the collector's edition of LBP 2, which featured LBP-themed bookends, their own personal Sackboy, and a bunch of DLC costumes from Disney movies and other Sony franchises. Who would have thought that a character named Sackboy could be so adorable?

Contents:

  • 7" Sackboy plushie
  • LittleBigPlanet 2 bookends
  • In-game DLC costumes

Dead Space 2 Collector's Edition
Format: PS3, 360, PC
Price: $79.99
Release: January 25

The Dead Space 2 collector's edition sounded great, until I realized that the included plasma cutter is just a replica, and not actually capable of melting off limbs. Then I found out that plasma cutters like the one in Dead Space don't even exist in real life! Looks like it's back to the workshop for me -- at least now I have a blueprint for what the final product should look like.

Contents:

  • Replica of Isaac's plasma cutter
  • Dead Space 2 soundtrack
  • Concept art lithograph
  • In-game code for Unitology suit and force gun
  • Copy of Dead Space Extraction HD with Move support (PS3 only)

Two Worlds II Royal Edition
Format: PS3, 360
Price: $99.99
Release: Feb 04

The Royal Edition of Two Worlds II contained extras to keep players busy while they weren't playing the game as well. In addition to a figurine and map of Antaloor, this collector's edition comes with a 72-page art book, a mouse pad, and a deck of Two Worlds II-themed playing cards.

Contents:

  • Cassara figurine
  • Hardcover Two Worlds II art book
  • Map of Antaloor
  • Mouse pad
  • Playing cards
  • In-game items including exclusive armor, items, and quests

Killzone 3 Helghast Edition
Format: PS3
Price: $129.99
Release: February 22

Killzone 3's special edition put the enemy center stage with a DC Unlimited figurine, plus a model head of the Helghast Helmet and mask. You can't actually wear it, but it should scare off nosy co-workers.

Contents:

  • Replica Helghast helmet and mask on stand
  • DC Unlimited Helghast figurine
  • Killzone artbook
  • PSN codes for Killzone 3 map pack, XMB theme, and soundtrack
  • SOCOM 4 beta code[PageBreak]

Crysis 2 Nano Edition
Format: PS3, 360, PC
Price: $149.99
Release: March 22

You know how sometimes people have ironic nicknames? Like when you call a fat guy "Slim," or a short guy "Stretch," or a fat, short guy "Slimmy-Stretch?" That must be what Crytek was going for when they named this oversized Crysis 2 collection the Nano Edition. It contains a full-sized backpack capable of carrying around a console in, along with the usual assortment of artsy-fartsy stuff.

Contents:

  • Nanosuit backpack
  • Hardcover art book
  • 11" Prophet statue
  • Steelbook case
  • Code for bonus in-game content

Mortal Kombat Kollector's Edition
Format: PS3, 360
Price: $99.99
Release: April 19

The Scorpion and Sub-Zero bookends in this "Kollector's" edition are so cool that we're willing to overlook NetherRealm's incessant need to misspell every word that's supposed to start with a "C." At least they picked the right two fighters - it wouldn't have been nearly as cool if it was someone krappy like Stryker. Ah, krap - now they've got me doing it!

Contents:

  • Scorpion and Sub-Zero bookend figurines
  • The Art of Mortal Kombat art book
  • Codes for in-game and Avatar DLC costumes

Infamous 2 Hero Edition
Format: PS3
Price: $99.99
Release: June 07

I always thought it was lame how Cole continued carrying around a messenger bag after he got his super powers, but I guess some gamers must have liked it, because it was a bonus item for Infamous 2's Hero Edition. I'd rather have that giant cattle prod that Cole bludgeons people with, but that's just me.

Contents:

  • 8.5" Cole Macgrath statue
  • Messenger bag
  • Mini Infamous #1 comic book
  • Official soundtrack
  • DLC voucher for in-game items

Duke Nukem Forever: Balls of Steel Edition
Format: PS3, 360, PC
Price: $99.99
Release: June 14

You'd think that this collector's edition would contain some pretty highbrow stuff, based on the fact that it has the word "balls" in the title. But while the contents of this Balls of Steel edition might not impress the ladies in your mother's book club, they'd be at home in any sleazy casino, which is where you'd probably find Duke anyway.

Contents:

  • "Carpe Nukem" collectible bust
  • 100-page hardcover The History, Legacy & Legend: Duke Nukem Forever Art from the Vault book
  • DNF postcards
  • DNF radioactive emblem sticker
  • DNF comic book
  • DNF poker chips
  • DNF card deck
  • DNF dice
  • DNF papercraft[PageBreak]

Catherine "Love is Over" Deluxe Edition
Format: PS3, 360
Price: $79.99
Release: July 26

In case you didn't know this game was for perverts, the "Love is Over" edition comes with a sexy pillowcase and a pair of men's underwear. Alright, I know the game isn't actually just for perverts, but there's no denying an overlapping interest in the bonus items.

Contents:

  • Men's "Empty Hearts" T-shirt
  • Men's boxers
  • Catherine pillowcase
  • Catherine soundtrack and art book (pre-order bonus)

Gears of War 3: Epic Edition
Format: 360
Price: $149.99
Release: September 20

Not only can fans admire the Marcus Fenix statue included in the Epic edition of Gears of War 3, they can practically steal his father's identity. In addition to the usual art stuff, the pack contains Adam Fenix's Octus award medal, COG flag, and personal effects, including his Last Will and Testament.

Contents:

  • Marcus Fenix statue
  • The Art and Design of Gears of War art book
  • Replica Octus service medal
  • Fabric COG flag
  • Personal effects of Adam Fenix
  • In-game content including Adam Fenix multiplayer character and weapon pack

Batman: Arkham City Collector's Edition
Format: PS3, 360, PC
Price: $99.99
Release: October 21

Warner Bros. is packing in a statue of Batman in Arkham City's collector's edition, which is cool and all, but if you ask me the company is missing a big opportunity. After packing in a batarang with Arkham Asylum, the publisher could've upped the ante with an explosive gel gun that sprays shaving cream. With a shaving cream canister that cool, I'd shave my face every day. Or at least use it to prank my sleeping friends.

Contents:

  • Batman statue
  • Batman: Arkham City art book
  • Batman: Arkham City music album
  • Batman: Gotham Knight animated original movie
  • Four collectible cards
  • In-game items including challenge map and Dark Knight Returns character skin

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception Collector's Edition
Format: PS3
Price: $99.99
Release: November 01

In addition to your own personal Nathan Drake statue, the collector's edition for Uncharted 3 gives you the accessories you need to finish off your cosplay outfit. Just remember to keep half your shirt untucked, because that's how the coolest treasure hunters do it.

Contents:

  • Nathan Drake statue
  • Replica of Drake's belt buckle
  • Replica of Drake's necklace and ring
  • Steelbook game case
  • Treasure chest package[PageBreak]

Lord of the Rings: The War in the North Collector's Edition
Format: PS3, 360, PC
Price: $129.99
Release: November 01

War in the North's collector's edition lets you pretend to be an elf. If that's your bag, more power to you.

Contents:

  • War in the North art book
  • Inside Look: The Music of War in the North mini-documentary
  • Ranger of the North quiver case
  • Digital content (PS3: XMB wallpapers and icons, 360: Avatar items)

Saints Row The Third Platinum Pack
Format: PS3, 360
Price: $99.99
Release: November 15

The Platinum Pack comes with a custom pair of headphones that have a built-in vocoder that will auto-tune your voice like the in-game character, Zimos the pimp. Unfortunately the headphones can't be used for online play, but if it makes me sound anything like Pimpbot 5000, I'm totally in.

Contents:

  • Saints Row headset
  • In-game soundtrack
  • Professor Genki Hyper-Ordinary Pack, including the Man-a-pult car, Octopuss gun, and Genki suit

Star Wars: The Old Republic Limited Collector's Edition
Format: PC
Price: $149.99
Release: TBA

We're still not sure that BioWare's Star Wars MMO will come out this year, but the limited collector's edition will keep you busy until 2012 anyway. The best additions come in the form of in-game items, including a stone that lets you change your lightsaber color, a droid to act as your adventure companion, and your own personal holographic dancer - things are getting freaky in the Star Wars universe.

Contents:

  • The Journal of Master Gnost-Dural sketchbook
  • 9" Dark Malgus statue
  • 14" x 20" galaxy map
  • Security authentication key fob for your game account
  • Music of Star Wars: The Old Republic orchestral album
  • Steelbook game case

In-Game Items:

  • Lightsaber/blaster color-changing stone
  • Flare gun: Shoots flares
  • Training droid: Provides combat assistance
  • HoloCam: Records in-game adventures
  • HoloDancer: Dances for your perverse amusement
  • Mouse droid: Droid sidekick
  • Exclusive store: Unique store with exclusive items

The Unknowns:
That does it for the best collector's editions that have already been announced or released, but there are a trio of games we expect -- or at least hope -- will pack some extra goodness when they're released later this year. Keep reading to see what they are, and what your final bill is for all of the featured collector's editions.

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