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Where to find tips for top holiday video games

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The week between Christmas and New Year's Day is joyful for gamers. With no school, work or any real responsibilities distracting you from that stack of new games you just unwrapped, it's the perfect time for some serious play.

Until, that is, you run into a puzzle you can't solve, a boss you can't beat, or a map that leaves you disoriented.

Don't worry -- there's plenty of help online. Here's where to find fast answers to your questions about the season's biggest titles.

Halo 4
The Halo community is a tight one, and is generally quick to offer advice. IGN has taken advantage of this, creating a Halo 4 Wiki loaded with staff and user information on the best way to make your way through the game's campaign.

The Wiki also offers detailed information on the best way to emerge victorious in the game's wide selection of multiplayer maps and how to take advantage of the new Specializations loadout section.

Assassin's Creed III
Ubisoft's latest entry in its flagship franchise might be the fourth big Assassin's Creed gme released in as many years, but there are a lot of people who are just jumping into the series now. GameFAQs offers a very detailed walkthrough for the massive stealth game, offering not only advice on how to get past the tricky missions, but general advice that can help your overall gameplay.

Like most GameFAQ entries, the advice is being regularly updated as well; if you somehow have a question that isn't answered today, you might find it there tomorrow. And, if not, most of the authors offer their email address in case you've got a specific problem you're struggling with.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II
Given the popularity of Black Ops II, there's a wealth of online sites that offer suggestions and tips. But the best way to improve your multiplayer game (which, let's face it, is why you're playing) is right there in the game itself.

Call of Duty: Elite is now a free service, giving all players access to game statistics as well as things like heat maps and recent match data. It goes even further, too: Call of Duty Elite TV offers developer tips and strategy programming along with custom class overviews and more.

Bethesda's stellar action/stealth game lets you play in a variety of ways – including playing through the game without shedding a single drop of blood. Achieving that goal is tough, though.

Designer Harvey Smith spoke with NBC News about the challenges of taking that path – and offered 10 handy tips on how to achieve it. (If you're looking for new and creative ways to kill your enemies, YouTube might be the best bet.)

New Super Mario Bros U
Having trouble with Boost Rush Mode? While pretty much any dedicated gaming site has tips or walkthroughs available, the best way to get help is to ask your fellow players.

The Wii U's Miiverse connects players from around the world, letting them share everything from musings to drawings to tips. Pop in and you're bound to find someone who has a solution to your problem. You might even make a new friend in the process.

Borderlands 2
Borderlands 2 is a hard game. It's also an incredibly large game. That creates all sorts of potential for frustration. The first, best suggestion is to play with friends. It's truly a game that's meant for co-op play.

Kotaku gives some good advice for players who are just getting started, but if you're hip deep at this point and struggling, IGN's guide can help you out of pretty much any specific jam in which you find yourself mired.

Far Cry 3
Have we ever told you the definition of insanity? Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.

Far Cry 3 archvillain Vaas might be a on the wrong side of the line of sanity, but he's spot on with his definition -- and too many players fall prey to it in this brilliant  action game. Taming the jungle and escaping alive isn't easy, but GameSpot's walkthrough will help you through the rough parts of the game's main storyline as well as its dozens of side missions.

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