According to Microsoft, the Xbox 360 exclusive content is more than enough justification for the recent increase in pricing of Xbox Live subscriptions.
The price hike which got active from yesterday saw an increase in 1 month ( $7.99 to $ 9.99), 3 months ($19.99 to $24.99) and 12 months ($49.99 to $59.99) for Live Gold subscriptions in the US.
UK customers were more lucky with the only hike being put in place being the price of 1 month Gold sub (£4.99 to £5.99).
Interestingly, during an interview with Gamasutra, when quizzed about how this recent hike can be benificial for gamers, especially when PS3’s PSN offers most of its core services free of cost, Craig Davidson, Xbox Live Marketing cited Xbox 360 exclusives as a primary reason –
“In 2002 it was strictly multiplayer gaming,” he said. “Now we get those Call of Duty map packs before anybody else does. We’ve got Gears and Halo, of course, as exclusives. We continue to get exclusives on the service as well. And we’ve gone from 400,000 members in our first year to 25 million.
“So during that time, we’ve definitely got to fund it, and we want to add more and more and more. ESPN is a great example. No extra charge for Xbox Live Gold members. But we want to continue to bring that content in. We also want to continue to innovate on all dimensions, whether it’s social, entertainment, or gaming. So there you go.”
So there you go, getting exclusive access to Call of Duty: Map packs is reason enough to justify the recent hike in price for Gold subs, atleast according to Microsoft.
However, with the strong line-up of multiplayer-centric games releasing on the PS3 next year ( Killzone 3, Motorstorm, Ressitance 3, etc), this point looks like more of an excuse than a solid reason. What do you guys think?