Dear krystyn h. wells,

This mail is confirmation that you have successfully renewed your subscription to Xbox Live 12 mo. Gold Membership. This renewal goes into effect on Monday, November 10, 2008. Here is a description of the service:

Xbox Live 12 mo. Gold Membership

To view the total charges for this transaction (including any applicable sales tax), please go to https://billing.microsoft.com. If you have any questions, please go to www.xbox.com/support, or call Xbox Customer Support at 1 (800) 4MY-XBOX.

Thank you for using Microsoft Online Services.

The Xbox Live team.

Since 2004 I’ve had the full Gold subscription, thanks to a little game called I Love Bees. Online gaming via console has really blossomed over the last year or two, so I suspect that I would have gotten a full year’s subscription with renewals sooner or later, but at the time I first plunked down cash for a subscription card at the midnight release of Halo 2, there was very little reason for me to invest in such a thing.

The immediacy of the community that I had helped to foster as a player through an Alternate Reality Game was impetus enough: I wanted to continue feeling the camaraderie and amazing potential power of the collective after the ARG itself was over. And even though I miss being a player of ARGs, I still hope and work to make every ARG experience I help design and execute capture some of the potential for this sort of community to flourish again. It’s humbling and awesome when it happens.

My online gaming now mostly consists of Rock Band 2 and Little Big Planet, but I still love to hop onto Halo 3 and see what shenanigans are afoot. It still feels like coming home.