Update: EA has issued a statement regarding the recent news about the possibility of Ads appearing in their games.
In a statement to VG247, the publisher states that :
Following incorrect reports suggesting that we are looking to introduce ‘TV-style’ commercials into our games, we wanted to clarify that in-game advertising for console games is not something we’re currently looking at, or have signed any agreements to implement.
Creating the best possible player experience remains our priority focus.
So at the moment, we can all breathe a small sigh of relief… but we can’t totally relax just yet.
Original story below!
Yes, you read the title correctly, your eyes aren’t deceiving you. In the US, a company called Simulmedia launched their new platform: playerWON, an advertising platform specifically designed for console and PC games.
Heresy I hear you cry… and you’d be right!
Simulmedia has described the ‘platform’ as ‘ a first of its kind in-game advertising platform’ and has reportedly signed deals with Hi-Rez and everyone’s favourite and definitely not money-grabbing company EA… because of course, EA has signed up, anything to bleed us gamers dry *cough* Lootboxes *cough*.
So how will it work?
If a game has the platform installed, developers can code ads into their games. The player will get an option to view a 15-30 second advert. If for some strange reason you decide to want to watch an advert ON YOUR CONSOLE after the advert has played, you’ll be rewarded, like a seal getting a fish after doing a trick, with either in-game currency or avatar skins… much like a lootbox.
This unfortunately isn’t the first time we’ve heard about this sort of thing happening. Last year there was a huge backlash after ads appeared in UFC 4 and NBA 2K21, yet EA still wants to go ahead with this.
Remember this? Be prepared to see a lot more like it
So why are they doing this?
One reason…. our generation aren’t watching enough TV to justify the cost of adverts. Let’s be real, the way people consume media these days has changed dramatically over the last ten years and the demographic of 18-34 are ‘cord cutters’ meaning we don’t watch TV or anything with adverts in, we have AD Blocks in place on our PC’s, we watch Youtube, Twitch, Netflix etc. all ad-free and this is costing advertisers money (oh boo hoo) as TV adverts are way more expensive than say putting an ad in a video game.
Furthermore thanks to the acceleration of F2P (Free-to-play) games across all platforms, play times and audiences have exploded, but apparently over 90% of us never spend money in-game … I mean they’re LITERALLY called FREE TO PLAY!
But I digress.
Testing for this horrific platform took place inside Smite for a year, and the findings are… horrifying, take a look
Data from one of Simulmedia’s pilot campaigns with Smite, a F2P multiplayer battle arena game from Tencent’s Hi-Rez Studios, shows that players were much more likely (22%) to play a game and spend money within the game (11%), if they watched in-game ads that gave them access to more gaming perks.
A whole 22% think it’s a good idea, what about the other 78%?
That being said if you go to Simulmedia’s website, you’re greeted with this
No we don’t
In any case, Simulmedia says the playerWON platform plans to launch in-game ads in roughly a dozen more games by the end of the year.
Here at ABG, we will keep an eye on this and let you know what games use this horrific money-grabbing platform…Oh and as EA love this idea, you’ll probably see it in Battlefield 2042.
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