Print 17 comment(s) - last by FITCamaro.. on Jul 26 at 11:08 PM

Microsoft's Massive Inc. and Electronic Arts solidified their gaming partnership

Electronic Arts recently announced it will use Microsoft's Massive Inc. to offer dynamic in-game advertising for five new game titles that will be released this fall.  The two companies are already working together with EA's Need for Speed Carbon and Def Jam Icon video games.

The following game titles will have dynamic ads via Massive Inc.:  Madden NFL 08 (Microsoft Xbox 360, PC), NASCAR 08 (Xbox 360), NHL 08 (Xbox 360), Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 (Xbox 360, PC), and Skate (Xbox 360).

Even though more than 35 game publishers are already using services provided by Massive, the agreement with EA will help garner more attention because it is so high-profile.

"We're thrilled to be EA's trusted partner for dynamic in-game advertising for these products," said Cory Van Arsdale, Massive Inc. CEO.  "The addition of EA's leading titles to our network represents a tremendous opportunity for brands targeting the youth demographic and sends a clear message that in-game advertising has arrived as a compelling medium for marketers," he added.

Yankee Group estimates indicate around $26 million was spent in 2006 on dynamic in-game advertising, with the number expected to rise up to $100 million before the end of the year - and up to $650 million within three years.

Microsoft purchased Massive Inc. for $200 million after anticipating in-game advertising would eventually become a major cash cow.  Even though the company is still far behind Google and Yahoo in overall online advertising revenue, Microsoft hopes to get a jump on the two companies in video game advertising.

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More ads?
By A5 on 7/26/2007 9:34:37 AM , Rating: 5
More ads should mean cheaper games, but I know that won't happen. Replacing the fake ads with real ones does nothing to enhance the "experience" and just makes people like me angry.

RE: More ads?
By zombiexl on 7/26/2007 9:41:25 AM , Rating: 2
More ads should mean cheaper games

Or at least better games, because of a increased development budget. Neither will happen, especially with EA's we'll just license it exclusively so we dont have to compete attitude.

RE: More ads?
By omnicronx on 7/26/2007 12:17:47 PM , Rating: 4
More adds = more money for the game developers, nothing more.
It will not necessarily make games better, cheaper, or longer.

RE: More ads?
By Xerio on 7/26/2007 10:25:31 AM , Rating: 2
I think that by adding the advertisements, the game experience will be heightened slightly, but it does seem like a way for developers to pad their pockets. I agree: more ads should mean less expensive games. There is a possibility that gamers could change that. But trying to organize a boycott against the game industry would probably be as successful as a boycott against gasoline companies: everyone would be gung-ho about the whole thing, but when it came down to it, no one would step up and go through with it.

RE: More ads?
By robert5c on 7/26/2007 10:39:34 AM , Rating: 5
well take a look at the game line up, especially need for speed, but also the five listed, they all already had static in game adds on the billboards and sidelines, because of their sporting nature, having the adds like you see them on tv wasn't too distracting...

and i think making them dynamic is better so long as they use taste and make the products and look of the advertisement match the game...because the thing i found the most distracting about in game adds was the fact that they were out of date, or talking about a product that was hot 2 years ago. so if used correctly it can enhance the games, and maybe make them better as companies generate development money.

RE: More ads?
By Lonyo on 7/26/2007 1:14:46 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. Assuming the ads are done in the right way, it should be no issue.
Football (soccer) stadiums in the UK have electronic boards all the way around the stadium which show ads all through the match, so assuming they do something similar, there should be no issue.
In the FIFA games, most of the boards are covered in EA logos, so in theory they can just replace those with real companies using dynamic ads, just like it is in real life.

RE: More ads?
By FITCamaro on 7/26/2007 1:33:06 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. I like the idea of ads being up to date still providing they fit with the game. Granted with sports games, advertisements are a given and built into the scenery anyway so its not as big an impact.

I only mind ingames when I'm seeing Coke advertisements during the middle of a WWII game. Or an ad for Volt energy drink while slaughtering zombies.

I wouldn't mind games returning to the previous $50 price point through the use of in game ads though. Paying $60 for a 360 game with the PC version is $40 kinda sucks. How about you charge $50 for each like the old days?

By pauldovi on 7/26/2007 12:25:03 PM , Rating: 2
I love the new BF2 map, "Highway to Tampa." It probably took them a whole 10 minutes to make the map, with the only purpose of it being to generate ad revenue. The map has Intel adds on every single billboard and all the boxes are covered in Intel ads. It really is a horrible map.

RE: Garbage
By Gul Westfale on 7/26/2007 6:17:31 PM , Rating: 2
yep it's quite bad because it takes you out of thegame, you're no longer a fighter in a war but merely a gamer. and the layout of the map sucks, it's waaaay to large and way too vehicle-centred.

but after the disaster that was BF2142 what did you expect?

Nice list
By Gul Westfale on 7/26/2007 6:15:45 PM , Rating: 2
The following game titles will have dynamic ads via Massive Inc.: Madden NFL 08 (Microsoft Xbox 360, PC), NASCAR 08 (Xbox 360), NHL 08 (Xbox 360), Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 (Xbox 360, PC), and Skate (Xbox 360).

that's the list of games i won't be buying then.

RE: Nice list
By FITCamaro on 7/26/2007 11:08:17 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't buy any of them anyway. Madden sucks, Nascar is boring (in a game), NHL I never cared about, Golf isn't even fun in a game, and skateboarding got old years ago with games.

But at least these are games where ads easily fit in since billboards are quite common in sports.

This is crap
By The Boston Dangler on 7/26/07, Rating: 0
RE: This is crap
By robert5c on 7/26/2007 10:50:30 AM , Rating: 3
well the truth is, they didn't really use in game ads as much in 2142 as people complained about and thought they would (maybe they didn't because people complained) i don't know, but the only ads i saw in that game were Intel ads...well done made to look rustic and as if it has been in battle, and placed only on billboards on the side of roads...i thought it was pretty cool, and that again didn't last long...they changed all those out with ads that look like 2142 propaganda for the expansion Northern Strike.

you have other games that have stores and ads on everything, i don't hear people complaining about all the ads in Grand Turismo...that game its self is pretty much just an ad in itself, to market cars to young people

thing is, you pay for your cable service then still get ads all over the do anything you'll be bombarded by ads...most people have become accustomed and not bothered by them, some even like watching the funny i really don't see this as a bad thing as long as its made to be incorporated well with the game.

some people no longer watch TV or leave there house because they spend so much time in games, if companies didn't try to advertise to those people and therefore didn't sell products tailored for that demographic, it would only lead to less development or higher prices in future products of that type...

peter moore doing his job
By havanger on 7/26/2007 11:08:14 AM , Rating: 3
Peter Moore steps aside from Microsoft to join EA

maybe it helps when your old friend peter moore joins ea sports and buys your dynamic add software...

I'm not sure what to think...
By SirLucius on 7/26/2007 9:41:01 AM , Rating: 2
...about in game ads. On the one hand, I don't like the idea of companies charging me $50-60 and then throwing in crappy advertisements everywhere (I doubt we'll really see a price reduction in games even with advertising in place). On the other hand, in game ads could actually fit the game and bring a heightened sense of realism. I guess it really just depends on how the ads are utilized in games.

I find em annoyin
By uallas5 on 7/26/2007 10:38:34 AM , Rating: 2
Like most of the above, I have my doubts that any in game ad revenues will lead to either lower cost or better produced games.

I also find them annoying. In RS:Vegas, apparently Intel was the only advertiser so constantly looking at "Core2Duo" ads got boring real fast. At least the fake ads in many games were either so washed out you never noticed them or were rather creative and funny.

Wow how right I was
By michal1980 on 7/26/2007 10:00:19 AM , Rating: 1
And I'm sure more of us like me were when this was starting to happen.

I said this would spread when we learned BF2142 would have in game ad's... err dynamic ads with tracking.

Now M$ gets to use live where they have all. ALL our info, address, phone number, email etc, to feed us ads.

Game prices go up, game quality goes down, orignal titles go down, and ADS go UP UP UP.

woo hoo, yes!. I cant wait. Pretty soon, while playing Madden to make it more releastic they will just have a commerical break during the game. Kick Off. Commerical, Turn over commerical, loading game commerical.

I'm sure their will be apologists for companies, citing the same thing... rising development costs, promising more freebies (freebies on live? LOL that will be 10,000 points for that jersey), promising better quality/more patches.

And haven't we learned its all lies? games will cost the same if not more, contain the same bugs, expansion packs will cost money. And AD's will grow.

I geuss it is time to go back to reading books to get away from ads, And I thought video games were a way to get away from all that.

Whats wrong with having a game to play the game.

I'll take the ads if the game is free, but I pay for it.

"We shipped it on Saturday. Then on Sunday, we rested." -- Steve Jobs on the iPad launch
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