InnocentDingo: It can take a little getting used to and not everyones cup of tea but is quite powerful once you are used to it.  The good thing is there are monthly updates and each one makes it just a little bit better each time.

As for Live it used to be that certain codes were locked for certain regions so you needed to be sure you were buying a NZ region code otherwise you are signing up for a US region account.  The console region can be changed easily but the live is at account level which is not easy to change.  I typically use NZgameshop as they are trustworthy and regularly do deals around the $55-60 mark for 12-13 months.  Not entirely sure if this is still true.  Means the likes of Ebay and Amazon might not be the way to go....though there is a line of thought that a US account is better anyway but means that NZ dollars cards can't be used so have to buy off amazon.  I have my live on NZ region and can happily switch regions on console if needed for other things (eg Netflix in US etc).

Thanks, that was what I was wondering.  Will check out NZ Gameshop, otherwise may just buy it on-line via the .live website.