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Gamers Don't Care About In-Game Ads 160

Next Generation reports on a study indicating that, on the whole, gamers are fine with in-game ads. From the article: "According to the study, 15 percent of heavy gamers are 'unlikely' to play a game that utilizes in-game ads, but one-third said they are 'likely' to play games with ads, while 52 percent said it makes no difference. Also among heavy gamers, 17 percent said ads would actually make them consider buying the advertised products, but only 9 percent of light/medium gamers would do the same."
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Gamers Don't Care About In-Game Ads

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  • by PSXer ( 854386 ) * <psxer@msfirefox.com> on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @04:45PM (#15353885) Homepage
    How do the three options "unlikely" "indifferent", and "likely" make any sense?

    Sure, if you were avoiding games with ads altogether, "unlikely" might be an option. Or maybe it just means that a lot of games don't have ads in the first place so you're unlikely to play a game that has ads.

    Does "likely" really mean that you'd specifically seek out games with ads, or that you play a lot of games and are likely to run into a couple that have ads?

    As for "indifferent", why is that a choice? How does the fact that you don't care either way about ads have anything to do with the fact that you're likely or unlikely to play a game with ads? It's not like games have a switch, "ads" or "no ads". You play whichever game you want to, and if it happens to have ads, you're "likely" to play a game with ads!

    • Does "likely" really mean that you'd specifically seek out games with ads, or that you play a lot of games and are likely to run into a couple that have ads?

      It depends on the game. Sports and racing games gain a lot of realism by showing the same types of ads you'd see in real life. I prefer to play one of these games with real ads than with fake/no ads. Other types of games, as well, can benefit - running around a large city? Billboards make sense. Running around an office? Soda machines in the breakroom m
  • Well I'm not so sure that gaming companies will consider dropping 15% of their customers for ingame ads. In addition as it seems its the heavy gamers who object the most, they may be the ones you don't want to piss off (as they most likely are the ones driving your 3rd party modifications). In addition I am not sure exactly what their numbers mean, 1/3rd will 'likely' play games with ads, how is this different than 'makes no difference'? (Does that mean that 1/3rd is more drawn to playing a game with ads
    • by sharkb8 ( 723587 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @04:52PM (#15353950)
      It's a pure numbers play. If a game company estaimates that 15% of gamers will not buy a game because of ads, will the ad revenue make up for the 15% loss in sales?

      In other words, will putting ads in a game make more money? I assume it does, becasue we see more and more ads in games.

      Arguably, even the 15% or gamers who wouldn't play a game with ads wouldn't find out that there were ads in the game, or that the ads bothered them until after they bought the game. You think Best Buy's going to give a refund because someone doesn't like the graphics?

      Besides, if a gamer wants a game as realistic as possbile, there should be MORE advertising in games, just like in the real world.
      • "Arguably, even the 15% or gamers who wouldn't play a game with ads wouldn't find out that there were ads in the game, or that the ads bothered them until after they bought the game. You think Best Buy's going to give a refund because someone doesn't like the graphics?"

        That's why we have reviews. A movie theater or a restaurant won't give you a refund just because you didn't like their fare either, but success is still (roughly) correlated with quality in those industries.
        • That's why we have reviews. A movie theater or a restaurant won't give you a refund just because you didn't like their fare either, but success is still (roughly) correlated with quality in those industries

          I think you misunderstood GP. These questions about how likely one is to play a game with ads ignore the question of overall quality. In other words, the aforementioned game that is being returned to Best Buy isn't necessarily being returned because the game sucks, bur rather because the hypothetical
    • Indeed. Splinter Cell 3 had the most ridiculous adverts in. Like a close-up of Wrigley's Airwaves at the beginning of an FMV. I laughed. I played on. I highly doubt the placement of ads in-game will illict a response to the effect of damaged game sales. That's why they can place the ads there... no one cares, and it's good market penetration.

    • But those 15% also said they are more likely to buy products for which their ads are contained in games. But this is just market research, which means about as much as how many Edsels Ford sold.
    • According to the article, they'd lose 19.5% of their customers. I too question comScore's methods. How do they collect this data anyhow? They have a web monitoring program that has been labeled spyware by some. Of course, they say it's "researchware". I'd say people who let the program spy on what they do "online and offline" are certainly much less likely to care about ads in games.
      • As long as it's tasteful and fits in with the setting I don't see a problem with it; a Nascar game with adverts on the cars, or hell even in City of Heroes I wouldn't mind seeing McDonald's or other stores out there on the streets of Paragon.
  • Stop-And-Watch (Score:5, Insightful)

    by foundme ( 897346 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @04:47PM (#15353907) Homepage
    As long as it doesn't require me to stop and watch the ad, I don't think in-game ad is anything but a subliminal background noise.

    For example, I don't mind constantly seeing the terrorists smoking xx-brand of cigaratte, but if my GhostRecon team has to stop every 5 minutes and gather around to have a smokey, I will be pissed.
    • What if the actual mission is to rescue a pallet of Camel non-filters that were accidentally dropped behind enemy lines? (If you don't like cigarettes as an example, how about Cheat Commandos O's [homestarrunner.com]?)
    • Exactly... Actual in game advertising like that is good in a way. When I see a soda machine it give the game an extra sense of realism if it looks just like the Coke machine in my office break room, instead of some cleaver knock-off or some generic "POP" machine.

      Then there's the other side... like EA's Fight Night Round 3, I haven't played it myself but I hear it's like watching a Burger King commercial with some Boxing thrown in for good measure.
      • damn I loved that burger king commercial... shame about the little bit of boxing that thay thought they had to put in. sell-outs.
      • I have to agree that ads add more realistic game environments. The coke machine in the office, the Pirelli or Brigestone adds in racing games, etc. As long as the add looks like it's just a texture that's supposed to be there to make things look right, I'm all for it. In fact, I'd say that this should have been done a long time ago! But I don't think that I want to be playing FFXIII and right after I tell my Aeon/Limitbreak/whatever to kill some guy and have some "This asskicking moment brought to you by Mc
    • by sterno ( 16320 )
      Frankly I don't mind ads as long as they don't distract from the game environment. If I walk past an ad in the game and it starts making noises or the overall content doesn't really fit the game, it bugs me. I've been playing PlanetSide since it came out and they added the in-game ads a little while ago. I actually have them blocked because they annoyed me so much.

      The basic problem with the ads was three things:

      1) Some ads were intrusive, making loud noises, etc
      2) Almost all the ads didn't fit into the c
      • I agree. In context, I wouldn't be that bothered if the retail cost of the game dropped slightly (as it doesn't, I'm quite unhappy about even the most in-context ads). However, anyone who's played Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory will know that the ads shown within the game are extremely out-of-place and seriously distract from the few-years-in-the-future environment. While SC:CT isn't an MMO, ads combined with Starforce and an overpriced game isn't a good combo, and that combination has stopped me from reins
    • Re:Stop-And-Watch (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Lord_Dweomer ( 648696 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @05:32PM (#15354234) Homepage
      Very correct. As an ad exec AND a passionate gamer I've been following this very closely. For the most part, advertisers and the facilitating media company that most of them use for this (Massive Inc.) "get it". They know they have to walk on eggshells when it comes to this new media. But then you get stuff like that boxing game on the Xbox360 where you fight the BK King etc. That is going WAAAY too far.

      I've done a writeup on this very story topic on my site which you can read here [blogspot.com] at The Halting Point [blogspot.com] and you can read the original Slashdot post [slashdot.org] that I made that sparked my writing of that piece.

      While I'd very much so appreciate the clicks, (even though I've made all of .07 through adsense!), to sum it up for those who don't want to make the jump....there are several levels of in-game advertising in terms of invasiveness. And you can view it as a spectrum. On the far left you have extremely uninvasive and even welcome additions such as sponsorship logos in Gran Turismo. It fits with the game world since the game world is simulating reality and they are expected in that type of game.

      Then you have things like billboards in MMOs like Anarchy Online and City of Heroes that, while appropriate for the setting (a city with billboards), still annoy you a bit because its trying to transplant culture from one world (reality) into a made up world where those companies do not exist.

      Then you have your extremely invasive product placement with crap like what Sprite pulled in the Matrix game, or what McDonalds pulled in The Sims Online. That is the stuff that pisses off gamers because it is a blatent slap in the face. It doesn't add ANYTHING to the game and in fact detracts from it...all that for $60.

      The interesting thing is how advertisers are trying to work their way into some of the more dominant games where the majority of titles are fantasy based like WoW. In my story I wrote a bit about possible ideas for working product placement into those worlds, but it requires advertisers to be able to have the balls to poke some fun at themselves, which I doubt they'd ever do.

      Honestly...in-game advertising is only going to get more abundant. Whether it becomes worse or not (ala the intraweb) depends on the so-called "gate-keepers" of the games who will have the final say over how much of a sell out they want their game to be.

      I'd expect more corporate sponsored guilds and guild events, more added material (like the CS map Subway made), and other new things we haven't considered.

      If it gets to the point though where the games are starting to majorly sacrifice playability and content for ad revenue though, customers will complain and run for the nearest competitor.

      • If you want surprise advertising, examine the packaging for the game Darkened Skye [mobygames.com]. There is absolutely no mention, at least on the package I got, that the game has any spnsors in the way of candy conglomerates... Then you play the game and it turns out that Skittles(tm) are the source of all magic...
      • by Moraelin ( 679338 ) on Thursday May 18, 2006 @07:51AM (#15356440) Journal
        Well, maybe _you_ realize the value of being subtle and respecting the (potential) customer, but, well, look at internet advertising. (Which in all fairness you do mention.) There the fucktards won the game, so to speak.

        It started decent enough there too. Most sites had one small banner on the first page. Nothing in-your face, nothing insisting to stay on top of the text you're trying to read, no fake UIs, etc. Where that ended, well, you know that already.

        Maybe _you_ realize what's wrong with that, but there are plenty of psychopaths which basically don't care. They don't even care if it actually helps their paying client sell more products, as long as at the end of the day they have their smoke-and-mirrors "we produced X thousand clicks" statistics.

        And belief in "they'll realize the customers won't stand for that" is, no offense, wishful thinking at best. We used to think that about Internet ads too. If you took anyone from the early 90's and told them that 10-15 years later ads would be full-screen animated layers in front of the actual content, extra pages with FMV ads each time you click on a link to an article, etc, they would have said the same. "What? The users will never stand for that kind of thing, and the ad providers know it!! People would stop going to that web site!!" It didn't quite work that way, did it?

        Yeah, I'm bitter, but I prefer to think of it as "grapefruit flavoured" ;)

        And if you still think games are immune to that, I have an example where it did already happen. At one point I decided to give Planetside another try. Guess what I was treated to, after it downloaded all the patches? A whole fscking FMV ad for their other planned expansion packs, and I wasn't allowed to skip it either. I found it outraging. Not only it wasted my time with the huge ad itself, but it wasted my time to download it as part of a "patch". But I guess the marketroid that came up with that couldn't care less.

        So at least at one company (Sony), the marketting guys/girls were already able to impose that kind of a heavy-handed slap in the paying customer's face.

        And here's what else I can see coming and I'm definitely not looking forward to:

        - heavy-handed blatantly-in-your-face advertising that breaks any suspension of disbelief. (E.g., I can live with having Coca Cola machines and bars selling Coca Cola all over the place, but if they go and make Coca Cola be the mana potions and work some blatant advertisment quests into the main line... well, there goes suspension of disbelief right there. Sorry, there's _no_ way I could take such a universe seriously. Maybe as a parody, but not seriously. E.g., I can live with Yahoo! ads on billboards, but don't freaking go and change my PSO Mag into a floating ad banner for Yahoo! like Sega did. That was one subscription cancelled right there and then.)

        - ad providers insisting that all ads are non-cacheable and loaded directly off their servers, so they can personally count the number of hits. See web pages everywhere which would load in 1 second otherwise, but end up taking 10 seconds to load because of the ads. I'm _not_ looking forward to seeing the same effect on games' level load times.

        - publishers starting to accept or reject games and settings not based on their merits, but on how suited they are for in-game advertising. E.g., rejecting a great game like Jade Empire just because Coca Cola ads would look out of place in it.
        • Well, maybe _you_ realize the value of being subtle and respecting the (potential) customer, but, well, look at internet advertising. (Which in all fairness you do mention.) There the fucktards won the game, so to speak.

          Have the fucktards indeed won, though? Yeah, there are a lot of irritating ads, but hasn't Google done quite well with text-based minimally-invasive ads? (In other words, might it be too early to announce a winner?)
    • Well, I *do* mind.
      Perhaps it's because I don't have a radio or a TV, and am thus simpy not as used to advertising. I ignore signs, and get highly irritated in cinemas, when they try to flood us with ads for 45 minutes (!) before the actual film starts.

      Thus I can say here and now that I will refuse to buy any game with ads in it.
      I have lots of good games. Still play the classics (have a look for "The Ur-Quan Masters", for example). Mind you, I buy quite a few games per month.
      If ads start showing up, this wil
  • No problemo (Score:3, Funny)

    by Ohreally_factor ( 593551 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @04:49PM (#15353922) Journal
    I have no problem with in-game ads. It's those interminable in-game focus groups and surveys that make a game unplayable.
    • I have no problem with in-game ads. It's those interminable in-game focus groups and surveys that make a game unplayable.

      That's why I always carry a few fragmentation grenades and an auto-loading shotgun to those meetings. Then, I get the cash for attending, plus I get a nice bodycount from all the marketing droids when I spatter them against the walls ...
      • Seriously, though, how do you get past the Final Boss Marketer without buying something?
        • Seriously, though, how do you get past the Final Boss Marketer without buying something?

          The trick is to keep your wallet in your left hand, hand it towards him, when he takes the bills out (ka-ching sound), you get the exit doors open - right then, toss the frag grenades behind you over your shoulder (eight-second delay), use the autoload shotgun on the FBM, put your wallet back in your pocket, then use your left hand to Search For Money on his bloody corpse - usually you get all the bills back, sometimes y
    • How would you feel if you were paying for HBO and they started displaying ads in the corner of the screen during the movies you were watching?

      If you're not paying for the game then whatever. They gotta make their money some how.

      Why should you have to see ads in the game if you already spent $60 for it?

      If people put up with it.. things won't get better.. they'll get worse.. eventually you'll start seeing more and more ads in your games and THEN it will become unbearable.

      It's just like going to see a football
      • Are you kidding me? Games like WoW and the various Lord of the Rings would be markedly improved if there was in-game advertising. Can you imagine if the Nazgul were driving Hummers? That would have been awethum! (I actually think Peter Jackson missed a lot of very lucrative product placement opportunities in LoTR that would have improved the trilogy. I'm sure that readers who are imaginative and agree can suggest where they would have placed products in LoTR.)
      • When they first started playing real ads in addition to previews at movies, I took to screaming "Hey! We didn't pay to see ads here!" which usually drew applause from the rest of the audience. I don't do it anymore because no one seems to care now.

        In a game, it would depend on how the ad was done. Seeing a can of Coke on a table? Absolutely ok. Seeing a big billboard for Coca Cola? Bearable. Having a Coca Cola "bug" in the corner of the screen constantly? Bordering on annoying. Being forced to watch an ad b
    • I have no problem with in-game ads. It's those interminable in-game focus groups and surveys that make a game unplayable.

      Yeah, but unlike real life, when a person comes up to you in a game and asks "Excuse me sir, do you have a to share your opinions about..." you can go postal & shoot them. Can you say "target rich environment?"

      "You wanna know my opinion about beef jerky? Well, here's what I think... BLAMBLAMBLAMBLAMBLAM! -click- (reload) BLAM! Anything else I can clear up for you today?"

  • by HunterZ ( 20035 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @04:49PM (#15353928) Journal
    They also forgot to mention that 87% of statistics are made up.
  • I care...! (Score:5, Funny)

    by creimer ( 824291 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @04:51PM (#15353945) Homepage
    As long I can shoot up, blow up, or burn up the ads in game. I care *very* much for in game ads.
  • by PeelBoy ( 34769 )
    How can that be? I'm not fine with it. I'm not going to buy a game and then turn around and have in-game ads forced down my throat.

    If it's product placement in like.. GT5 where you can buy a GReddy turbo what ever.. I can *put up* with that.

    But billboards displaying real ads? Fuck that. No way. Especially when the game probably cost $60 bucks. I won't buy it. Period. Not if I know it has ads in it.

    At this point in my life.. NO game is a must have. Except maybe a simple Nintendo game (New Super Mario Bros.)
    • Put the righteous indignation down before you hurt yourself, son. There's a limited supply left, and most of us would rather it be used for something we are forced to do, not something which occurs in a voluntary activity.

      You're part of that 15%. You are represented. Do I care if I'm playing PGR or something and a billboard for a new product flies past? Nope. Do I care if there's a Coke truck on the side of the road? Nope.

      Speak with your wallet and save the tissues for important occasions.
      • Amusingly, I *enjoy* seeing a Coke truck along the side of the road. It seems realistic to me, and it's a lot less annoying than the "Cohe" truck with the near-Coke logo. My real world has ads everywhere. I don't mind when my gaming world has them to match. [When appropriate.]

        Oh, sure, nobody wants to see a Nike branded sword in EverCraftWars, but we *all* want to see Nike clubs in Tiger Woods 2007.
    • Most polls mention something like this. 45% said Yes, 50% said No and 5% said don't know.

      What they don't say, 35% told us to fuck off and die or just ignored us when we tried to talk to them.

      Same with online surveys how many people on being asked to fill one in just ignore it?

      When it comes to surveys about ads you can't ignore this group. After all what group is most likely to be irritated by time wasting ads. Those who happily spend time filling in a survey or those that don't want to be bothered.

      Can I

    • Re:WTF? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Osty ( 16825 )

      If it's product placement in like.. GT5 where you can buy a GReddy turbo what ever.. I can *put up* with that.

      That's not really product placement, and I wouldn't be surprised if they had to pay Greddy to use their name and logo. Now if Greddy was the only brand of turbocharger you could buy in the game (look at Need For Speed: Most Wanted, for example), that would be product placement. In GT4, it's "realism". Perhaps only Greddy supplies a turbo for the car you're trying to modify, so the only turbo

  • Skewed survey (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Aim Here ( 765712 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @04:55PM (#15353979)
    Of course this is only a survey of people who are so advertiser friendly as to sit and tell a bunch of market researchers what they think. People who strongly dislike advertising are no doubt fairly strongly inclined towards telling those market researchers to fuck off instead of giving free clues as to how to target their insidious mindraping propaganda more efficiently. I know I am.

    • Dude, you should totally opt to join focus groups. You can give weird answers and throw them off. DO it carefully enough so they don't think your lying and you get free stuff for being SOOO helpful! :)
    • You've never been in a focus group, apparently.

      They feed you!!
      Actually, many of them will pay you $100 (or more) to do their fancy little group thing.

      • I got pizza and a $100 best buy gift certificate for telling someone why their product sucks. Considering I'd probably have bitched about the product either way, I'd say I came out ahead.
  • I happily make up a small part of that 15%. I play games to escape real life, not to be thrust right back into it with ads for Subway and other out of place product placement.

    The _only_ exception I would make would be a completely free MMORPG that was subsidized with some sort of innovative advertising. MMO's are not all that immersive in the first place due to the people who play them and their actions for the most part, so being able to casually play an MMO for free would be something I'd be willing to be
    • The _only_ exception I would make would be a completely free MMORPG that was subsidized with some sort of innovative advertising

      Wouldn't work. If you made it free, the target audience would stay home, play until they starved to death, and never buy anything.
      • And yet Anarchy Online has free ad-supported play for the basic game. If you want the expansions you have to pay to play and subscribers don't see ads.
        Runescape - the browser based MMO also has free play with ads.
        Of course the fact that Anarchy Online is somewhat ancient (in MMO years) and looks like crap may be part of the reason you don't see tons of players staying at home starving to death playing it.
  • In Game Ads (Score:3, Funny)

    by TacNuke ( 890744 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @05:01PM (#15354031)
    I for one, dont care about in-gadrink pepsime ads
  • It's not that gamers don't care, it's that they're not going to change their purchasing decisions based on the ads. I don't know of anyone that wants contrived ads in their games. The only things that are decent are things that add to the game, such as actual restaraunts in Crazy Taxi, or EA's use of actual songs for their soundtracks (in Burnout for example).
    • The only things that are decent are things that add to the game, such as actual restaraunts in Crazy Taxi, or EA's use of actual songs for their soundtracks (in Burnout for example).

      Just nitpicking - but did you play the first burnout? It had a beautiful adaptive soundtrack that would increase in BPM, number of instruments and intensity as you went faster or as time ran out. It was completely adaptive to what was happening as it was being composed on the fly, and made the game far more intense and enjoyab

      • I did play the first, though admittedly not much and some time ago. I found the soundtrack [in 3 at least] to be pretty appropriate. Perhaps I just liked the novelty of real music with my game after decades of hit and miss composition.
    • The only things that are decent are things that add to the game, such as actual restaraunts in Crazy Taxi, or EA's use of actual songs for their soundtracks (in Burnout for example).

      A couple of years ago I had an idea for a bicylce simulator where you'd be a bike courier racing through the streets of Amsterdam. Had to make money in order to fix your bike and all that. Which meant bicycle shops. So why not use real bicycle shops? And why not ask them for money for such a promiment role in the game? And w

  • I remember the first day I saw an NFL Street ad inside of Madden 2004. I knew at that moment that there was going to be an explositon of ad sales in games. Now if we can create and adblock and filterset.g updater for consoles I think many would be much happier! :P
  • This is Bollocks. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Lave ( 958216 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @05:11PM (#15354101)
    Disclaimer - this post includes angry fucking retoric, and swearing with an english slant

    I hate the way that these advertising arseholes have found an untapped niche, where people relax away from the fucking stressful world and realised they can rape it of it's innocence and beauty in exchange for a quick buck. It isn't ok and it isn't right.

    The marketing dickshits are currently at step 2 of their plan. The stage where they tell us all we are ok with what they want to do - to soften us up for when they fuck over our games. I would bet a large amount of money these are rigged surveys. Or at least the ones that give you options like:

    If games contained advertising then would you:

    a) stop buying games altogether

    b) Buy more games than ever before.

    If you saw a product advertised in a game then would you:

    a) Buy it

    b)Kill yourself

    And don't just think you can just play nice fantasy and sci-fi games that avoid this advertising. You won't. Those games will dramaticcally fall in production when the industry realises that without the advertising revune these projects ar emuch less rewarding.

    Oh and I know how games with no loading screens are really important to you. But your fucked. They will have no incentive to decrease load times when they use them as billboards. If anything they will increase.

    Give me the game or free and I haven't a problem with ads. But if I buy the fucking thing with my own fucking money then I bought the right to have a few beautiful hours of my life sans adverts for fucking once. (like how slashdot works). There is no in between. If your business can't support those revenue models there is something fundamentally wrong with what you are doin and no amount of advertising will save you.

    • And don't just think you can just play nice fantasy and sci-fi games that avoid this advertising.

      Hell no. The first game I saw with ads in it (I don't play racing/sports games) WAS A Sci-Fi RPG. You might have heard of it. It was called "Xenosaga: Episode 1"

      Do NOT give that fucktard your email address in the beginning or you'll be getting spammed throughout the whole game.
      • My first time (should I be sharing this?) was playing Wipeout XL, with its ads for Red Bull. The ads worked, too; Red Bull was the first significant "energy drink" in the US and I bought it the first time I saw it, and have been hooked on it since. At least, when I'm driving at night...
    • This post needs a +5 informative and I for one _WILL_ download illegal hacks, cracks and so on to remove the ads.

      Infact some games I will have to assume are completely free and subsidised thanks to the ads, hence I'll download the entire game - not just the hacks!

  • I have no problem with ads under the following circumstances:

    -If the game is noticeably cheaper as a result, or

    -If the ads are unobtrusive.
  • by interiot ( 50685 ) on Wednesday May 17, 2006 @05:13PM (#15354112) Homepage
    The survey asked whether gamers would tolerate games that contained ads. That doesn't meant that gamers and developers are enthusiastic about adding advertisements.

    Will the best-loved games of the next decade contain in-game ads? How would Tolkien have reacted if his mythology had been required to include products and services from the real world? If, instead of pulling out lembas bread in the movie, would it have been better if Sam would have pulled out Go-GURT® brand Yogurt? I can't help but think that product placements mar otherwise highly-polished stories.

    • If, instead of pulling out lembas bread in the movie, would it have been better if Sam would have pulled out Go-GURT® brand Yogurt?
      No, but take for example a games like F.E.A.R, Doom 3 or Duke 3D. A coke, pepsi or vending machine isn't exactly out of place, and to be completely honest, not seeing one is odd. Ditto with billboards, or anything "painted" on the side of a building (instead of the same boring texture over and over).

      And, of course, it would be pretty damn strange to have a coke ad in an RT
  • or are their methodologies flawed? I could care less if Ads were in games, but I'd want full disclosure that they -are- in there. Also, if you're making money selling ad-encumbered game, I want a stiff discount on how much you're charging me for the game.

    It relates to my movie watching habbits.
    DVD
    I buy DVD's for the purity of the movie without useless marketing crap. I don't buy DVDs that have no ads, period. If you wanna bleed a bunch of wankers for advertising, lower your prices for ad encumbered -low end
  • I think this shouldn't be read as an endorsement of in-game ads, but rather a preference for in-game elements that have more effort and thought put into them than stock filler items do.

    Usually billboards and soda machines are just slapped in games with some sort of corny, fake logo or slogan that is 60% joke. If these fake, filler billboards had all the attention-grabbing research and professional media strategy and design behind them that real ads do, well, of course players would feel more strongly
  • When it comes right down to it, I think the majority of people will only become annoyed with advertising when it interferes with their gameplay. When you take people out of the gameplay experience to recognize that a certain product is in the game, then you've crossed the line. I haven't heard of very many people complaining about the billboards that are now common in racing games, or even having the player use a licensed product in the game (guns, cars, or sporting equiptment, anyone?)... but a lot of pe
    • Let me be the first to complain about billboards in games. I really don't like the billboards in Burnout 3. Why? Its the same four or five ads over and over and over. Plus, they are almost all for other EA games. I find it annoying. Then there's this one for Axe deodorant with a sunglassed face of indeterminate sex that is just disturbing.

      Maybe if they had thirty real billboards, it would make them more money and would annoy me less.
  • Which game publishing company paid for this delightful dandy to be placed on the front page?
  • What I can't wait to see is who gets sued when one of the ads hosting servers gets hacked. For example, this topic reminded me about the ads in Rainbow 6:Lockdown. Since I first played it, I thought it would be funny to replace the in-game ads with porn. Now, the ads are just comming from some web server, donwloaded and then displayed, how hard will it be to find out what site the game is looking at, redirect the host to a local web server, and send whatever images I want?
    How long before someone decides
    • Since I first played it, I thought it would be funny to replace the in-game ads with porn. Now, the ads are just comming from some web server, donwloaded and then displayed, how hard will it be to find out what site the game is looking at, redirect the host to a local web server, and send whatever images I want? How long before someone decides it would be funny to hack the ad server and goatse everyone playing that game?

      * forwards this post to Jack Thompson *

  • It highly depends on the kind of game and on the way the ad is presented.

    If I play a fantasy game and my trusted war horse is a Fiat (cheap) or a BMW (expensive), that would kinda kill the mood. Imagine saddle bags in a medieval setting in striking white with a BMW logo on it.

    I can, though, see a sci-fi setting where I can pull some Red Bull from a vending machine that boosts my power (or even lets me fly :)).

    Same applies to banners. Ads on race cars or as banners on the side of the track actually add to th
    • I can, though, see a sci-fi setting where I can pull some Red Bull from a vending machine that boosts my power (or even lets me fly :)).
      Worms 3D already had Red Bull as a power-up. I think it made you move faster, but I only played the demo for a bit before deciding Worms should have stayed 2D :)
    • Frankly, that's what scares me the most. If ads become common place, how do you think publishers are going to respect that? I'll tell you how: by stopping publishing medieval games completely. Give them a choice between:

      A) an interesting game set in a refreshingly new medieval setup, like Jade Empire, _but_ you can't put Coca Cola and McDonalds ads in it, or not without massively losing more sales than it's worth in the resulting player outrage (even if EB Games won't give you your money back for that, you
  • I'd like to voice my opinion of a gamer who is very mainstream and controls the purchasing decisions for 2 toher young gamers in my household.

    I will not buy games with ADs, leave my games alone, leave me the frick alone, and go somewhere else.

    Can I have one Fricken place IN THIS WORLD where I can indulge in a pleasure and not intruded upon with ADs?!?!?!

    I ALREADY PAID FOR THE GAME!!!

    Hands off, for the love of all things good and pure, please stay away.. where does this shit end?!?

    Leela: Didn't you have ads
  • I hate in-game advertisements, but realistic product placement in a reality-themed world is acceptable. crazy taxi did this: you had to take people to *real* locations, like Tower Records, or the Levi store, or KFC... granted, it seemed a little odd that people wanted to pay a taxi to go to KFC, but then again, the way I drive, it seems a bit odd that they'd get in the taxi at all.

    in my opinion, if product placement can add to a gameworld, awesome. but collectible Bawl's bottlecaps in "brotherhood of st
  • I remember the first time playing Need for Speed: Underground and rounding a corner and seeing a big McDonald's billboard. I thought it was kinda weird and out of place, mainly because it was so obvious and stood out like a sore thumb. A real life billboard wouldn't have been so bright compared to the darker surroundings.

    As long as it looks natural, as much a part of the surroundings as a tree or fence, and it's not a fictional world, then it's somewhat acceptable (I still think it's a sign of them selli
  • but we're too busy blowing things up or swinging on vines to register our protests.
  • In game ads are generally ineffective as there were plenty of games that included fake ads. Duke Nukem 3D, as one example, littered the first level with ads for upcoming attractions. None of these movies existed (and were considered in-character). The only real advertisements would be in the arcade, where 3D realms advertised there other products as arcade games - and even then, at least one of them was a joke (an ad for Duke "Don't have time to play with myself" Nukem.)

    For product advertisements, these
  • Gold sellers are sending me mail in-game.
  • I was going to type out a long subject, then decided to keep it short and sweet.

    Neopets is funded through advertisements (and a probably tiny amount for their premium service, but that's relatively new. I have no numbers, this is a guess.)

    Ads on Neopets are:
    1) Banner Ads
    2) Games
    3) In-Game items
    4) Non-Game locations that can be visited

    The only ads I've heard people complain about on the boards I visit (yes, I'm 29 and I play Neopets. Shut up.) are the banner ads, and like any other, they can be turned off
  • And I agree with the general conclusions on the topic:

    - In game advertising won't reduce the price of the game.
    No one should have any illusions that if a $60 game has paid advertising in game that it will come down to $20. Producers will just pocket the extra revenue.

    - In game advertising makes sense in some places and is in fact expected while others it sticks out like a sore thumb.
    For a game like Grand Turismo, sponsorship is a part of the racing experience. You should see logos and other other stuff tr

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