The Average Gamer

Xbox LIVE Rewards Program – What Do You Really Get Out Of It?

Microsoft launched their Xbox LIVE rewards program today in the UK and US. You can sign up for it via the Xbox LIVE rewards website, if you are over 18 years old that is. The program runs until 15:59 on 30th June, 2011. Here is the summary of what rewards are on offer (image from the Xbox LIVE rewards website):

XboxLiveRewards_ColourfulSummary

One more important date to note is the 31st Dec 2007. Why? Well, this is the date that Microsoft use to determine if you are making your first Xbox LIVE gold membership or marketplace purchase (see the rewards program terms and conditions). If you have bought a gold membership or any marketplace content since this date then you are not eligible for these rewards (total of 200 reward points)

So that’s Microsoft selling the benefits of the program to you. But, what are you likely to see in terms of rewards points in your account. Lets have a look, starting with my Xbox LIVE account.

My Xbox LIVE profile:
  • Current membership: Xbox LIVE Gold – 14 months
  • Xbox LIVE Gold Family pack: No
  • Gold member since: Aug 2009
  • Purchased Marketplace content since 31/12/2007: Yes
  • Subscribe and use Sky: No

Microsoft rewards available to me:

  • Subscribe and use Sky – 100 points
  • Purchase selected Marketplace content – Points value varies
  • Take a survey each month – Max 7 surveys before rewards program ends (140 points)

Well, I’m not going to subscribe to Sky any time soon, so my total benefits will be 140 reward points or 58% of some night vision goggles for my avatar. Also there is no information about the selected marketplace content at this time (not announced yet), so I cannot factor in these points. Another thing to note – reward points do expire. You need to use them by 30th June 2012.

If you are already a gold member of Xbox LIVE:
  • Renew 12 month Xbox LIVE gold membership – 200 points
  • Make your 1st purchase on Xbox LIVE marketplace – 100 points
  • Complete 7 monthly surveys – 140 points

You are looking at 440 reward points. If you have a 1 or 3 month gold membership then you are going to only get 330 points (3 x 3 month renewal) or 310 points (7 x 1 months renewal). This is assuming that you’ve not bought anything on the marketplace since 31st Dec 2007!

If you are new to Xbox LIVE:
  • Purchase 1st Xbox LIVE online gold membership (3 months) – 100 points
  • Make your 1st purchase on Xbox LIVE marketplace – 100 points
  • Renew 3 month Xbox LIVE gold membership – 30 points
  • Renew 3 month Xbox LIVE gold membership – 30 points
  • Complete 7 monthly surveys – 140 points

You are looking at 400 reward points.

However, this is not very cost efficient as the 3 x 3 month memberships (~ £44.97) will cost you much more than 14 month membership (12 months plus 2 months free) at £34.99. Purchasing a 14 month gold membership would only net you 100 points, as you can’t renew within in the 7 month lifetime of the rewards program.

Summary:

Don’t expect to see lots of reward points from this program, or none if you are under 18 years old. Yes, you get 400 points from the family pack but this costs £69.99 in the first place. The constraints that Microsoft have put in place limits the benefits to existing Xbox LIVE gold account holders, especially those that have bought anything from the marketplace in the past 3 years. Realistically, unless the selected marketplace content gives significant reward points per item, or there are lots of items to get reward points from you will be struggling to get more than 340 points added to your account.

However, if enough people fill in the monthly surveys, Microsoft will be reaping the rewards from all this lovely information about its Xbox LIVE users at a relatively minimal rewards points cost.

2 Comments

  1. Danny

    2nd Mar, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    Sounds like the author Nick is not very fond of the Xbox or Xbox360 as they are not listed in the consoles he owns….sounds more of a Eastern fanboy of japanese consoles to me…..funny how the japanese for the most part don’t like the XBOX because its american owned company. Maybe one day in this country we will show a little national pride as well.