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sally's spa

Yesterday Windows Phone Central reported that Sally’s Salon Luxury Edition, the first game in the Sally’s series for Windows Phone, had been reduced in price from $4.99 to $2.99. While many believed the price change to represent the return of the Windows Phone Xbox Live Deal of the Week program, we did say it could have simply been a permanent price drop...

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Since the Xbox Live Deal of the Week program’s humble inception in March 2011 (with Frogger on sale), the program has become quite popular with deal hunting gamers. Perhaps I should say had become, because the deals of the week unceremoniously stopped coming after the August 8 late Marketplace update.

We theorized that Microsoft’s Xbox Live gaming division might have been too busy gearing up for Windows Phone 8 to bother with poor little WP7 games any more. Whether or not that played a factor, the program just might be back! Sally’s Salon Luxury Edition from Game House is now $2.99, down from $4.99.

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At lunch time on Wednesday, we were a bit hesitant to post a story about the Marketplace updating late. What if it updated within the next few minutes after the post went live? As it turns out, we needn’t have worried. Sally’s Spa, this week’s Xbox live release, finally went live around 1 am EST Thursday. That’s officially the latest a Windows Phone Xbox live game has ever been posted. Cheers?

There is some good news, however. While Game House quoted the game’s price as $4.99 to us, it’s actually showing up at $2.99 right now. Could the lower price be a mistake? I don’t know, but if you’re interested in helping Sally start her own spa chain, I would advise buying now rather than waiting. That price increase on Fling makes me antsy! But you know, $2.99 certainly is fair for Sally’s Spa given that it’s a bit shorter than its predecessor Sally’s Salon and retails for $2.99 on iOS anyway.

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As folks ‘in the know’ know, updating a platform’s Marketplace/app store is a challenging and laborious thing. Regular occurrences like publishing the latest Xbox Live game and updating the Deal of the Week might seem (to simple laymen) like things that could be easily set up in advance, but that is not the case at all. If you need proof, just notice how the Windows Phone Marketplace hasn’t updated yet. Challenging, I tell you!

All sarcasm aside, these late updates happen from time to time, most recently in June when Fling was scheduled to launch. Today’s delay means Sally’s Spa is not available just yet, much to my dismay (the last game was seriously fun, naysayers). Nor do we have a new Deal of the Week. Interestingly enough, last week’s sale, Need for Speed: Undercover actually ended on Monday, well before the scheduled end time of Wednesday morning. More evidence that running a Marketplace is super hard? You tell me.

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Lindsay Duffy (left) and Camay Wells

Windows Phone Central exclusively announced Sally’s Spa for Windows Phone a few months ago, and now we’re back with the first footage of the game running on our platform of choice.

“How?” you ask, filled with cat-like curiosity. Well, my inquisitive reader, Sally series publisher Game House had a major presence at Casual Connect Seattle, hosting not just a sizable booth but also a thumping pre-party featuring chicken and waffles, among other fine things. Aren't you dying to be a journalist now?

During the actual conference, Camay Wells, Director of Mobile Games Marketing, graciously demonstrated the game for us and showed off some of its new features. Spa-tastic video after the break! (Video link now fixed)

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Clockwise from left: Droplitz Delight, Sally's Spa, and Tiki Towers 2

It’s been a while since the folks at Game House released a new mobile Xbox Live game, but that will be changing very soon. WPCentral is pleased to announce that Game House will be publishing three more Windows Phone Xbox Live games in the months to come. All three are sequels and should be a lot of fun when they finally roll out. Head past the break for full descriptions and more Game House news.

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