January 9, 2013

How MS Points are a rip off in New Zealand!

So it was my birfday recently and Xbox Live Rewards sent me an email saying Happy birthday and here’s 20 MS points! Sweet! I thought. That’s really cool. I feel truly loved by Microsoft Corporation.

And then I thought, what’s that in dollar terms?

So in New Zealand, 500 Microsoft points costs $8.25 which means my birthday gift was princely value of 33 cents. Which is basically the cheapest birthday gift any body has ever given me. Thanks Steve Ballmer, you sure know how to make a xbox game feel special….

And then I thought to myself, what can I buy with 20 MS points? What if I wanted to by the Halo 3 Crimson Map Pack? That costs 800 points so with my birthday points I can buy 2.5 percent of that.

I can also buy one quarter of the Halo 4 Logo Tshirt avatar. Actually, the cheapest Halo related thing I could find on XBL was 80 MS points.

The cynic in me says that this birthday gift was just a cheeky way to get me to buy more MS points so I would actually buy DLC and what not. Nice try there Microsoft, I see what you did.

I imagine a ‘spokesperson for Xbox Live Rewards’ might  respond to that by saying something like, “this gift of points was just a token from us to acknowledge the member’s birthday. Greater use of the XBL rewards system will er.. reward members with more points which can be used to redeem a set of useless avatars that no one cares about”. Or sum such thing.

But it gets worse. 

In the United States, home of the Xbox, the Yankees and  Pee Wee Herman, 80 MS points are equal to US$1. Which means result, an 800 point DLC such as the Crimson Map Pack would retail for US$10.

What’s the comparison to New Zealand? Well if 500 Microsoft points costs $8.25 that means a point = 1.64 cents so 800 points = $13.20.  And according to the ap on my iphone the currency conversion to USA $ value is $11.016 which means if I am in NZ, I appear to be paying a premium of 10 percent just because I live in NZ than America to buy some Halo DLC content. 

Thanks Steve, you sure know how to make a xbox gamer feel special….

While I was at the Xbox site working out the prices of points, I saw I could earn 20MS  points if I did a quick survey. Well it was quick and I lied about everything. Even my age. Take that Steve, you should have made me feel special.