The XBL schedules for this month have been released and there are a few corkers coming down in price in the next week or two, so if you have a few Microsoft Points floating around you might want to hang onto them for a few more days. Check out the list of upcoming deals below and see if anything grabs your eye, we've put in the previous prices and the saving you'll be making in brackets. There's also a link at the bottom for the XBL new releases for the rest of this month:
Week Commencing January 18th:
- Mass Effect: Bring Down the Sky - 240 MP (400 MP - Save 40%)
- Mass Effect: Pinnacle Station - 240 MP (400 MP - Save 40%)
- Hasbro Family Game Night: Battleship - 400 MP (800 MP - Save 50%
Week Commencing January 25th:
- Portal: Still Alive - 800 MP (1200 MP - Save 33%)
The Mass Effect deals are perfectly timed to coincide with the upcoming release of BioWare's sequel. Of the two, Bring Down the Sky is the better one, although it's basically just a slightly drawn-out side quest with a couple of shiny new cutscenes. To be honest, it's actually quite fun, but it certainly won't blow your mind. I picked it up when it was 400 MP and thought that it was an okayish price, but 240 MP is an excellent deal and if you hankering more a bit more classic Shepherd action before part two arrives, this is the one to go for.
Pinnacle Station is a disappointment, essentially a gladiatorial arena for a creaking combat model. No one played Mass Effect for the combat, so designing a load of DLC specifically centred around combat should have been shot down in the ideas department from the start. You could spend 240 MP on it, but I'm not even sure if it's worth that.
Battleship is the classic game we all know and love with a few extra game modes thrown in for good measure. It was never really going to be worth 800 MP, so now that it's dropped to a respectable, if not quite dazzlingly attractive, 400 MP it's certainly worth a punt for any fans. There are enough extras, unlockables, achievements and party options to keep things somewhat fresh too.
Portal is the big one, though, and anyone who has yet to sample this stunningly inventive game should really do so without delay. You don't need to buy The Orange Box for this one any more (although you probably should as Half Life 2 is amazing!), and Still Alive comes bundled with 14 all-new hardcore bonus levels for maximum head-scratching. It was just about worth it for 1200 MP, but at 800 MP it's definitely a must-own game.
Thanks to Cuddy at HUKD and MajorNelson
UPDATE: Remember that for the rest of the month EA are offering an 800 MP rebate for anyone who buys three of their selected XBL Marketplace products. Original a Christmas deal, the run has been extended to the end of the month. You can find the full list here.