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Microsoft Discontinuing Games for Windows LIVE Sales

The Games for Windows LIVE Facebook page reports that the PC gaming-based Marketplace on Xbox.com will be shut down on August 22 as part of retiring Microsoft Points. At that time, customers will no longer be able to purchase PC games, but will still be able to access their previous purchases and content through the Games for Windows LIVE client as usual. Microsoft is now encouraging PC gamers to spend their Microsoft Points before that date.

According to a FAQ regarding the closing, Microsoft is also turning off the purchase functionality within the downloadable client as of August 22. Furthermore, the company states that it will no longer sell Games for Windows LIVE titles published by Microsoft from any marketplace. For other titles, Microsoft directs gamers to the third-party publishers. In-game purchases and other downloadable content purchase availability will vary based on the particular game, the company states.

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"Microsoft Points will be retired as part of the next Xbox 360 system update," the company states. "The next time you initiate a purchase or redeem a Microsoft Points card or code on your console with your Microsoft account, we’ll add an amount of currency equal to or greater than the Marketplace value of your Microsoft Points to your account. You can then use the currency in your Microsoft account to buy a variety of Xbox content from your favorite Xbox stores, and if you have a Windows Phone 8 device, content from the Windows Phone Store."

Microsoft merged Xbox.com and the Games for Windows LIVE Marketplace website back in July 2011 so that Microsoft customers could purchase their console and desktop games in one place. Unfortunately, the website is console-focused, catering mostly to the upcoming Xbox One, Xbox 360 and Xbox Live Gold members. The PC gaming aspect is tucked away under the "Games" section, and plays host to around 198 games, add-ons, videos and demos.

News of the Games for Windows LIVE Marketplace closing arrives after former Steam director of business development Jason Holtman confirmed that he is now working at Microsoft to focus on making Windows a great platform for gaming and interactive entertainment. "I think there is a lot of opportunity for Microsoft to deliver the games and entertainment customers want and to work with developers to make that happen, so I'm excited to be here," he said.

Holtman was part of a massive layoff that included Jeri Ellsworth and 24 other Valve employees. The company didn't make any explanations about the staff reduction, but the surrounding speculation was enough to pull Gabe Newell out of silence. Now there's speculation – perhaps backed by a lot of hope – that Holtman will take his Steam experience and refocus Microsoft's efforts in the PC gaming and digital distribution space to create a more competitive, more robust platform.

  • HEXiT
    so what they gonna do with the unspent points after the closing date? if they dont refund there customers they could stand to be accused of theft.
    Reply
  • Ragnar-Kon
    So... in essence... the "Games for Windows LIVE Marketplace" isn't disappearing forever, it is just being pulled back to be relaunched at a later date after some improvements (and hopefully a shorter name) to compete with the likes of Origin and Steam.

    Whelp... good luck. Two online stores is already annoying to deal with enough (lets just say that EA is lucky I really like Battlefield)... definitely don't want to have to deal with THREE stores.

    Then again, I could see it being very helpful for those future Xbox One owners as long as Microsoft tightly integrates the stores between the two platforms. I could see Xbox owners buying content on PC and then downloading it on their PC or on their Xbox at a later date.
    Reply
  • unksol
    Way to read the article.....

    "The next time you initiate a purchase or redeem a Microsoft Points card or code on your console with your Microsoft account, we’ll add an amount of currency equal to or greater than the Marketplace value of your Microsoft Points to your account. You can then use the currency in your Microsoft account to buy a variety of Xbox content from your favorite Xbox stores, and if you have a Windows Phone 8 device, content from the Windows Phone Store."
    Reply
  • dragonfang18
    Anyone find out how to get Fallout 3 DLC after it is gone?
    Reply
  • dragonfang18
    crap i cant edit/ delete what I wrote in panick of reading title.
    Reply
  • randomizer
    Kill it with fire
    Reply
  • eklipz330
    gfwl has had multiple rebirths over the past few years... i can't say i liked it very much. the problem with it was it was mostly console centric.

    if they want to succeed, they will have to learn to play nice with steam. that is the only way they are guaranteed success. there are too many pc gamers that don't want to stray away from steam, myself included.
    Reply
  • eklipz330
    the best possible way would be to make the gfwl login optional, not mandatory. and logging in and out of gfwl should not affect your save game. it should not feel intrusive. in fact, logging in should just be a click of the mouse if anything at all. games should be playable as they install, always be prepared to avoid server issues, and make it available offline. a huge plus would be the ability to somehow connect your steam library to it. in fact, that would be a massive plus.
    Reply
  • abbadon_34
    Which is why you need a local unrestricted copy for true ownership.
    Reply
  • lpedraja2002
    GFWL was done badly from the start, I don't know who makes these decisions at Microsoft but they have been utterly failing for the last years.
    Reply