I tried to post a couple days ago, but the computer ate my draft. It's been that kind of week.
I'll start by saying that the jerks at Microsoft have screwed me over. As many of you know, I am a recent convert to gaming. Before Sean, I thought video games were at the root of many of society's problems, from so called ADD to obesity and of course violence in youth. Actually, I still have oppinions on these topics, but I'll save all that for another post. This is about Microsoft's 'Help' staff being (pardon me) dick heads.
I've always had an XBox Live 'Silver' account. It basically lets you play the games, and add friends and accumulate 'gamer points', but does not let you play online. Up until recently, I was okay with that, especially since the Silver memberships are free and the Gold memberships cost about $70/year. Now Xbox 360 has come out with a live online game show called 1 vrs 100, and I decided I wanted to try it out. Sean had a free 1 month trial kicking around, so I entered the information into the Xbox and... long story short, I don't exist.
Here's what we've gleaned so far: (and by we, I mean Sean, since he handled all of this, which I must say is extremely fortunate for the moron who took our call.) To have a Silver or Gold membership, you need to have a Microsoft account. If you use MSN messenger or Hotmail, you already have one. As I don't use msn or Hotmail, back when I signed up for the account, I used my yahoo.ca email address for login purposes. What I didn't know was to keep your account active, you have to sign in with Microsoft or one of it's products every 3 months or they delete you. You might be playing on the Xbox 24hrs a day, but if you don't login to thier website, msn or hotmail, you're toast.
So what happens to all those lovely gamer points you've painstakingly been collecting? And all those really cool achiements you've busted your butt to get? They are stuck in your dormant account which you are welcome to continue using, but you'll never be able to upgrade your account, change your contact information, or update in any way.
So I've started afresh. I have a shiny new account, with a pathetic amount of gamer points and a handfull of achievements. On the bright side, I can replay all my old games and experience it like it's the first time, but that takes a lot of time and effort. Oh well, you've got to roll with it.
The funniest thing is I am fully aware of how ridiculous this all is, yet I'm still a little dissapointed. After all, these are imaginary points earned by doing imaginary deeds in imaginary worlds on a game console. It's meant to be entertainment, or a toy even. Even as I type this I'm wondering how long it's going to take me to re-play Fable 2 so that I can play the new expansion...
As a parting thought, can you imagine what would happen if Sean or Jeff lost all their gamer points? It's a good thing Obama closed Guantanamo.