Microsoft is once again running a promotion called “Halo 4 Combat Tour”. Its purpose is to encourage gamers to play Halo 4 for a significant number of hours or buy a tad of Halo-related things.
This month, playing Halo 4 for more than 35 hours could earn gamers 100 Microsoft Points, over 70 hours tantamount to 300 points, while 140+ could bring in 600 points. The points don’t appear cumulative, as the promotional page says that gamers can earn up to 800 points. This includes 600 points from playing Halo and additional 200 points for buying game-related stuff.
If the garnered Microsoft Points will be converted to real money, 600 points is equivalent to around $7.50. So by playing Halo 4 for more than 140 hours, which is roughly six hours a day for the next 24 days, gamers could earn $7.50 or $0.50 an hour.
It seems that Microsoft is promoting an unhealthy gaming habit in exchange of a very minimal amount.
Microsoft: Promoting Unhealthy Gaming Habit?
Although heavy gaming session is nothing new, 42 hours of gaming per week is still 42 hours. According to NPD, the average core gamer usually spends 18 hours a week for gaming. To make it worse, Microsoft is pushing players to consumer over 140 hours for Halo 4 as fast as they can. That’s because the company will only give out a total of 10,000,000 points on a first-come, first-served basis.
In relation to this, one Kotaku reader commented that the offer is not enticing; it is also not power-efficient.
Does anyone know how much electricity the Xbox will eat when it is on that entire time? Going by the highly accurate Yahoo Answers, it seems to be somewhere near the ballpark of $18 to run the TV and Xbox.
Jonathan Grey Carter of The Escapist also pointed out how unimpressive Microsoft’s Halo 4 Combat Tour is.
Thus far, the Xbox Live Rewards program has been harmless, if unimpressive, but encouraging gamers to risk their health in a competition to win the equivalent of three quarters of a copy of Double Dragon Neon strikes me as rather bad taste.
Halo 4 is considered as a brilliant installment in one of the most successful franchises in the gaming industry. This means that the game doesn’t need crappy marketing campaigns to encourage gamers to sell it. If Microsoft really wants players to pick up the latest Halo installment, they should make a more worthwhile promotion.