What are the three main things you can do to affect the sales of a console? Cut the price, raise the price or stop making it altogether. So Microsoft has decided to mess with our heads by doing all three to the Xbox 360.
The Elite console – the high-end of the three versions of the 360 – is seeing a price cut from £229.99 to £199.99, mirroring its reduction in the US, where it’s being slashed from $399 to $299.
Fine. But the basic level – the Arcade model – is having its price raised from £129.99 to £159.99, which is most definitely not happening overseas.
Meanwhile, the mid-range model, the Pro, is being discontinued altogether – once the current stock is gone, that’s your lot.
The cuts are a reaction, of course, to Sony slashing the PlayStation 3 cost in advance of the new PS3 Slim model being released.
It’s also worth noting that games and consoles are going through a slump in America, with a 29 per cent drop in sales overall. However, the Xbox is bucking the trend by being the only console over the pond to grow in sales, with a 17 per cent increase.
The new prices will come into effect on Friday.