It seems like almost everyone hates dealing with Microsoft Points… well everyone except Microsoft. I am sure most of us have extra points sitting in our accounts after buying the one thing you want. Usually those left over points don’t amount to enough to buy something else, causing an endless loop of always having points but never enough to actually buy something. For some of us who wanted to purchase content from Microsoft without using points turned to Amazon. However, with this recent announcement is no longer an option.
Starting in April of last year Amazon started selling codes to download XBLA games. The few of us who used the service viewed it as a relief from being tied to Microsoft’s points system. Amazon used the actual dollar value of the games when selling them and completely bypassed the confusing points system. Unfortunately, this service has just come to an end.
Looking to buy last weeks arcade release of Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light on the Xbox 360? Well on the Xbox Live Arcade service it is 1200 MS Points or $15. The smallest points card you can purchase at a retail store to buy that game is 1600 points. That leaves an extra 400 MS Points or $5 dollars still in your account that you possibly do not want or need, essentially turning that $15 game in a $20 game. If you bought the code for that game off Amazon it would be $15, that is it, no extra points left over and no extra $5 spent.
With no official announcement from either Amazon or Microsoft it leaves us wondering what happened. It appears from the community response to this news that not very many people were aware that you could purchase these games off Amazon. Could Amazon have just decided to end the deal because it wasn’t profitable? Or was Microsoft not happy with no longer being able to milk a few extra dollars out of the consumers with extra points?
Ranters, what are your thoughts on this? Is this Microsoft enjoying their profits from a confusing and shady business model, or just a expired business deal with Amazon?
Amazon has said that although you can no longer purchase full games on the site you can still purchase MS Points cards. Amazon will continue to sell WiiWare and Playstation Network titles on the site.