Competing with the Call of Duty franchise when it comes to player loyalty is hard. Microsoft's strategy? Pay people to play Halo 4.
Microsoft has unveiled its "Halo 4 Combat Tour Offer," which pays gamers in Microsoft Points for playing multiplayer Halo 4. Players can start earning points once they once they hit 35 hours of multiplayer action. For that achievement (I'm not sure if there's an actual achievement for accomplishing the feat), players will recieve 100 Microsoft Points. 300 Microsoft Points go to players who put in over 70 hours of gameplay, and players who reach 140 hours get 600 Microsoft Points.
In addition, Microsoft is giving Microsoft Points to gamers who spend tons of money on Halo 4 content in the Xbox LIVE Marketplace. Players who spend 1,500 Microsoft Points on Halo 4 content will receive 100 Microsoft Points back, and those who spend 3,000 Microsoft Points will receive 200 Microsoft Points.
The offer is only good until the end of November, so players will have to play about five hours and 23 minutes of Halo 4 multiplayer every day since yesterday to reap the largest reward. However, the offer also cryptically states that player can "get up to 800" Microsoft Points, suggesting that the deal is capped anyway. This contradicts the numbers, which suggest that players who play for 140 hours should receive 1000 Microsoft Points.
Aside from encouraging gamers to stick with Halo 4 when Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 comes out next week, the offer is also meant to get players signed up for the Xbox Live Rewards program. Players will have to be a member of the program to receive any rewards from the Halo 4 offer.