Gadgets

Tech toys for big kids this Christmas

Light up a geek's face this Christmas by buying them a Lightsaber. Or Scalextrics. Or Lego. We know what they want, trust us.

Being a geek means never growing out of your love of cool toys, whether it's battling remote-control robots or expensive Star Wars gear that your salary now affords you to indulge in.

If you're buying gifts for a geeky loved one this Christmas then toys aimed at big kids should definitely be on your list. I've rounded up 10 of the best, including some familiar classics like Lego and Scalextric.

Lego Man Torch

Price: £15 from Amazon.

Lego Man Torch

Lego Man Torch is not so much a man or a torch, but more a legend. He's our number one go-to guy for impromptu photoshoots or when we just need a quiet word of encouragement during our darkest hours. He's always there, ready to light the way ahead with the two LEDs that were painfully inserted into his feet at birth.

All he ever asks of us is that we make sure his three AAA batteries are fully juiced up and that we don't arrange his moveable arms and legs into rude poses. What a guy. Lego Man Torch, we love you, man.

Lego Star Wars Millennium Falcon

Price: £90 from Tesco.

Lego Star Wars Millennium Falcon

If you're going to recreate the Death Star escape scene in the comfort of your lounge, you can't really do it without having a Millennium Falcon to hand. This Lego recreation, which measures 38cm long, will take a few happy hours to build but has been designed with rewarding attention to detail.

Hull plates open to reveal the interior and you can fire twin flick missiles. The cockpit cover is detachable and there are rotating quad-laser canons too. It also comes with several mini figures including Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Chewbacca.

Nerf N-Strike Elite Hail-Fire Blaster

Price: £36 from Debenhams.

Nerf N-Strike Elite Hail-Fire

There's no question that http://crave.cnet.co.uk/gadgets/nerf-havok-vs-nerf-stampede-vs-nerf-raider-review-foamy-darts-of-death-50001569/

have set the standard for play weaponry, but the company isn't resting on its laurels, at least if the N-Strike is anything to go by. It's got the highest capacity of any Nerf blaster yet, with four quick-reload clips and 24 darts, and can hold up to four more ammo clips and a total of 144 darts for maximum mayhem.

The blaster has a massive range of 75ft and the acceleration trigger powers up the built-in motor for semi-automatic blasting that really does unleash an impressive hail of bullets.

The Dark Knight Rises: Batpod by Hot Toys

Price: £220 from Forbidden Planet.

Dark Knight Rises: Batpod

Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight trilogy is one of the best action series ever to grace cinema screens and it's spawned huge devotion among its fans. Enough love, in fact, for followers to shell out over two hundred smackers on a miniature collectible replica of the Batpod from The Dark Knight Rises.

This 1/6th-scale Batpod has headlights with a light-up function, machine gun, grappling hook and wheels with hub-mounted engines. It's also a match in scale to the other Hot Toys figures in The Dark Knight Rises series.

AppToyz AppBlaster

Price: £6 from Modelzone.

Apptoyz Appblaster

This plastic gaming gun is an accessory for the iPhone or iPod touch. You download the related games from the App Store and then slot your iOS device into the holder before attaching it to the gun. Your iOS device's screen then works as an augmented reality display, letting you blast aliens, tin cans and other objects that pop up virtually around your room.

The Alien Attack app is free to download and there's a variety of other games available that are designed to work with the accessory. Most of them are priced between 69p and £1.49.

Lego Minecraft

Price: £35 from Lego.

Lego Minecraft

If you haven't played Minecraft yet then you should do so immediately as it's one of the most addictive games you're likely to come across. It revolves around building structures out of blocks, either as protection against attacks from hostiles or just for the sheer fun of it.

As the blocks are mainly cubes, the whole look and feel of the building system isn't that far away from Lego, so it's no surprise Lego's now selling this Minecraft Micro World based around Steve, the central character in Minecraft, and Creeper, the baddie.

Star Wars FX Lightsaber: Luke Skywalker

Price: £135 from Forbidden Planet.

Star Wars FX Lightsaber: Luke Skywalker

Inside all of us geeks is a dormant Jedi master -- all we need is a Luke Skywalker lightsaber to unleash the Force. It's a stunning recreation of the original with a durable metal hilt that looks and feels -- in my dreams, at least -- like a real lightsaber.

The blade is permanently attached and glows when switched on. It even produces realistic power-up and power-down light effects as you activate and deactivate it. There are four authentic lightsaber sound effects built in. And when you're not waving it around with your blast shield down, you can show it off in its specially designed case.

Griffin Helo TC Assault Helicopter

Price: £30 from Asda.

Helo TC Assault Helicopter

The Helo TC is a remote-control helicopter with a difference -- this one can be controlled by apps on iOS and Android devices instead of a boring old handheld remote. You slot your phone into what Griffin calls the Flight Deck, which is an IR adaptor for your phone that connects to its headphone socket. This then beams commands from the app to the 'copter.

Using the app, you can control the helicopter either via your on-screen virtual joystick or by tilting your device. The Helo TC has twin rotor blades, so it's quite easy to control and is designed only for indoor use.

Scalextric Digital Pit Stop Challenge

Price: £188 from Very.

Scalextric Digital Pit Stop Challenge Set

This set uses Scalextric's digital technology and allows more than two cars to share a track. By pressing an extra button on the controller, you can make your car switch lanes on special sections of track for overtaking or strategically blocking your opponents' cars at key moments in the race.

It also has an integrated pit stop section on the track, which players use to compete against each other to see who can stop first and trigger the pit stop lights. To make it trickier, the pit stop closes randomly between 15 to 30 seconds at a time, so you can't guarantee it'll be open when you reach that section of the track.

Combat Creatures Attacknids

Price: £70 from Firebox.

Combat Creatures Attacknids

It's time for Robot Wars! These remote-controlled spidery robots have been specially designed to go head-to-head in battle. They can be rotated fully through 360° and have an impressive walking action that allows them to travel across uneven terrain -- much cooler than old-fashioned wheels.

The built-in weapons system fires discs at your enemy. As each Attacknid has special armour that releases when hit, you can actually see the damage you're inflicting on your opponent. Score three direct hits and you'll temporarily disable your foe until the next round begins.