Kotaku Gift Guide: T-Shirts

At GamesCom 2010, a certain publisher (let’s call them Schmarner Schmothers) gave out a few free t-shirts to publicise a popular video game that never got released in Australia (let’s call it Schmortal Schmombat). It was so ugly that one games journalist (let’s call her Schmacey) said: “Man, I would give this shirt to someone I really hate.” Well, Christmas isn’t about hate, so here’s our pick of aesthetically-pleasing t-shirts worth giving this Christmas.

ARCADE EXPRESSIONISM This is a fantastic gaming t-shirt for so many reasons: aside from being aesthetically pleasing, it’s subtle and only those familiar with Donkey Kong would pick up on the design – everyone else will just think you need to start wearing an apron. Threadless.com, $US20

MICKEY THE HEDGEHOG I am dizzy with confusion: Is it a mouse? Is it a hedgehog? Is there such a thing as a medgemog? Schmedgeschmog? Whatever. This Meat Bun shirt (Meat Bun is the t-shirt company founded by former Kotaku US editor, Michael McWhertor) is a delightful collision of two icons – it’s clever enough to not be obnoxious and confusing enough to inspire words like schmedgeschmog. We like it!

Meatbun.us, $US24


First thought: “What a delicious hue of blue!” Second thought: “Oh hey it’s Master Chief!” Third thought: “And he’s… oh.” This may not be the classiest of t-shirts in terms of subject matter, but it is certainly the most pleasant depiction of teabagging that we have seen on a t-shirt. Which is to say that this can probably be worn to grandma’s house without inducing any heart attacks. Nerdyshirts.com, $US13.49

HISTORY OF ZELDA If your gift receiver enjoys Zelda but would feel like a bit of a doofus wearing brightly coloured graphics of a pixie-like Link, then this subtle design may be the key! I have seen people wear this shirt in the Real World and they don’t look like psychopaths, so that is an encouraging thing!

80stees.com, $US20

DIABLO RAINBOWS When Diablo III screenshots were first revealed a few years back, there was outrage on The Internet about the rainbows in the game. Because, y’know, the worst thing a developer could possibly do to a game is give it a bit of colour. In response to The Internet’s Reaction, Blizzard printed a bunch of these t-shirts. You can still buy them!

Us.blizzard.com, $US22

World of Warcraft Alliance Hoodie So a hoodie is not a t-shirt, but I felt that this was worth including because it actually looks like a wearable item of WoW clothing. In fact, some might suggest that it is quite a stylish hoodie! Available in male and female sizes, it is a little bit pricey, so you probably want to give it to someone you really like. In my case, I will be gifting it to myself (lol).

Jinx.com, £58.49

Do you know of any gaming t-shirts that would be good stocking stuffers this Christmas? Share them with us in the comments!


    Now this sort of stuff I can get behind. Do want the Diablo 3 tshirt :D

      There's a reasonable chance that I will be purchasing that shirt soon...

    hahaha that diablo 3 one is most excellent

    History of Zelda is my fave of those. Considering...

    I own the horde version of the wow hoodie, it's amazingly comfy to wear and I love it. It has thumb holes and says 'For the Horde' inside of the pockets, too.

    I feel compelled to mention splitreason, although most people here would already be aware of it.
    Recently picked up a Starcraft shirt at a con, got recognised the other day. Being a geek rocks.

    Too bad the Zelda one only comes in "XL".

    One of my gaming related designs got purchased by Split Reason a couple of weeks ago, and now it's up on the site for purchase. it's a Street Fighter themed shirt, so check it out if you want :)


    Apologies for the blatant self-promotion, but bugger it, I'm pretty damn happy with what I've done and I wanna show off!

      Nice work! I actually completely forgot about SplitReason and just went to the sites that I've purchased things from -- keep all your recommendations comign as I'm sure readers will find them helpful. :)

      And now I've stumbled across the EG shirts on Split Reason because of you.

      I'm fairly sure that I need to see EG Puma wearing this shirt at a SC2 tournament.

    I wish to see this ugly "Schmortal Schmombat" t-shirt!

    history of Zelda is probably the best one.

    This is my pick for gaming t-shirt:


    I have a few threadless t-shirts and I can say their quality is very high. I recommend them.

    For the Zelda/Back to the Future fans, this shirt is for you:

    The Threadless Donkey Kong one at the top is also available in kids sizes - I have a teeny tiny version for the baby, and most people don't even realise we've nerded him up already :)

    Please accept these tips of gameshirting greatness that I wear... and recommend.


    I also have a (currently unavailable, but bound to be reprinted) Threadless Tee called "A Simple Plan" which you'll find via google - one for the Taito fans. :-)

    I got stuck on redbubble the other day (thanks to some linking in TAY)

    But my new shirt I really want is this one

    So I was at a little beer cafe a few weeks back and a staff member had the most amazing tshirt in the world:


    His rule is free drinks if you can name them all....I failed :(

    Check www.cafepress.com.au for custom printing

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