Would you support advertising in the game?

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Cyclops
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Would you support advertising in the game?

Remember the Hostess adds in the Comics?
It was a mini one page comic showing recognized heroes defeating recognized villains with the wholesome goodness of Hostess Twinkies?
I always got a kick out of the silly nature of the adds.

OK so let me take a poll of you players out there.

What if certain billboards in the city actually hawked real life products?
Would it really interfere with game play? or immersion?

What if it was only for the free to play players who would see these adds.

What if the Market place offered a 50% off healing tabs if you watched a 30 second animated super hero vs Twinkies advert?

Now I think a lot of players would recoil at this idea...but if it brought much needed revenue into a game we love...would you tolerate it?

So what do you think? Please don't flame me, I'm trying to get a feel for the player perspective.

MY VIEW: As a player I want to escape the real world. But I would tolerate most of this if it meant a healthier, better funded gaming environment. I would say NO to the animated commercial in the market place.

Plexius
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I believe this has been

I believe this topic has been touched on elsewhere, but I'll throw in my two cents here anyways. I would support limited in-game advertising of real-life products under certain conditions.

  • No Sponsored Content - I would not want advertisers exerting any control whatsoever over the content or creative direction of the game.
  • Privacy - I would not consent to having details of my identity or activity shared with advertisers.
  • Moderation - I would not want to see ads plastered over every square inch of the city, nor the same ads repeated in every location.
  • Unobtrusive - Ads must not obscure the content of the game in any way, i.e., no click-to-close ads, no banner ads in the UI, etc.

This is coming from someone who is very much against advertising in general. I run uBlock Origin, NoScript, and other addons in my browser with only the most necessary exceptions for trusted services. I'm of the opinion that advertising is an annoying distraction at best and a threat to one's privacy and security at worst. The World Wide Web is a much better place without it, and I believe Titan City would be as well.

That said, I think logos placed on billboards or posters here and there would be acceptable. I could see certain applications like these as being beneficial to immersion to some extent. As long as MWM could avoid selling out to advertisers, and as long as the players and the game would remain their top priority, then I could see it as something I could live with.

ooglymoogly
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I second what Plexius has

I second what Plexius has stated here. Such an approach would make the game more immersive and allow MWM to generate more revenue, albeit not a huge amount.

Umbral
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It should probably be

It should probably be mentioned that City of Heroes actually implemented this. They started selling advertising space on the in game billboards so it was minimally invasive etc. It didn't actually get much traction and, I believe, they just gave up on it altogether after a certain point, mainly because it's not really a cost effective method of advertising since players tend to zone out when traveling in game, even moreso than they do in real life.

I actually support the idea, especially since it lends a bit of realism to the game, but it could easily amount to a lot of work that doesn't actually get them much money. Basically, to make it cost effective, ads would have to be obtrusive which a lot of players would rail against.

Izzy
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Umbral wrote:
Umbral wrote:

It should probably be mentioned that City of Heroes actually implemented this. They started selling advertising space on the in game billboards so it was minimally invasive etc. It didn't actually get much traction and, I believe, they just gave up on it altogether after a certain point, mainly because it's not really a cost effective method of advertising since players tend to zone out when traveling in game, even moreso than they do in real life.
I actually support the idea, especially since it lends a bit of realism to the game, but it could easily amount to a lot of work that doesn't actually get them much money. Basically, to make it cost effective, ads would have to be obtrusive which a lot of players would rail against.

you mean like when an instanced mission is loading.. have a Banner show at the top? free players and subs too?

Radiac
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I, for one, have no problem

I, for one, have no problem with sponsored content. Even if its something as goofy as a Task Force which needs you to "Save Mayor McCheese from the Hamburgaler and his Fryguys" or some such. I would expect the game developers to use sound judgement on what they would and would not try to foist upon us in that vein though. I trust them.

Also, this sort of thing has to be considered as an option and balanced off of the other stuff you might do to generate revenue in it's place. One person might not want Sponsored Content, another might be fine with that but really hate paid subscriptions, another might hate both of those things and want everything to be cash shop microtransactions, etc. You're never going to appease everyone without resorting to "everything is totally free" which is a really bad deal for the company making the game.

I don't want to put words in anyone's mouth, but as soon as one person tries to rule out one specific monetization option it becomes really easy for the rest of us to just join in and go "Yeah, no sponsored content, because that overcommercializes the game, and that's selling out, man! Also, I call no subscriptions, no cash shop, no in-game billboard ads, no ads in the loading screens, no up-front cost to buy the game, no cost to buy expansions, and no need to spend any money at all on the game. OH! And no asking for donations either." Every player on these forums might agree to those restrictions, but guess what, that's a pipe dream because the company still has to make money off of the game somehow, or else there won't be a game. So let's all try to keep that in mind while we're requesting stuff. At some point, somebody has to give MWM REAL MONEY to pay the REAL PEOPLE who do REAL WORK to make and maintain the game. *deep breath* ... okay, rant over, I promise. Didn't mean to ruffle anyone specific there, just making general comments. Monetization is always a divisive topic.

R.S.O. of Phoenix Rising

Fireheart
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I could certainly see

I could certainly see Billboards in typical Billboard locations, with real-world advertising on them. I could even see vending machines that actually Vend the soda/candy of your choice, with a custom animation for consuming it - for an Inspiration-like effect.

What I don't want is to have 'commercials' forced on me, or have the advertising interfere with game content.

Be Well!
Fireheart

Cyclops
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OK, from just this small

OK, from just this small sample, billboards and product placement are OK, but nothing else...right?

Plexius
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Umbral wrote:
Umbral wrote:

It should probably be mentioned that City of Heroes actually implemented this.

You're right. I do remember seeing ads for shoes (Air Jordans?) on billboards in different locations throughout Paragon City. I believe it was possible to opt out of seeing those ads, but because they were subtle and didn't impact the game, I never opted out. Their implementation is a good reference for what I would personally find acceptable.

Radiac wrote:

Monetization is always a divisive topic.

No doubt about that. The topic of monetization has proven itself to be the single most contentious topic on these forums -- some of the larger threads in this subforum are a testament to that.

It's true that everyone has their own opinions of what is tolerable and what isn't. It seems that there will always be some players who will refuse to play based on how the game is financed. It's just the fickle nature of MMO gamers I guess.

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i agree with the guidelines

i agree with the guidelines plexius mentioned.
as long as it's not over the top and not too much out of sync with the kind of setting well have then sure i'm all for it.
especially if it will generate income for the game.

Radiac
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In defense of Sponsored

In defense of Sponsored Content specifically, I just want to point out that I personally would love to do stuff like a "Rescue the four members of Weezer from the clutches of the badguys so they can make it to the show on time" or "Stop aliens from abducting Lada Gaga and taking her back to her home planet" etc. So I think there's a way to do that well and there's ways to screw it up, and if done well, I think it would be cool.

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Plexius wrote:
Plexius wrote:

I believe this topic has been touched on elsewhere, but I'll throw in my two cents here anyways. I would support limited in-game advertising of real-life products under certain conditions.
No Sponsored Content - I would not want advertisers exerting any control whatsoever over the content or creative direction of the game.
Privacy - I would not consent to having details of my identity or activity shared with advertisers.
Moderation - I would not want to see ads plastered over every square inch of the city, nor the same ads repeated in every location.
Unobtrusive - Ads must not obscure the content of the game in any way, i.e., no click-to-close ads, no banner ads in the UI, etc.

*snip*

billboards or posters here and there would be acceptable. I could see certain applications like these as being beneficial to immersion to some extent. As long as MWM could avoid selling out to advertisers, and as long as the players and the game would remain their top priority, then I could see it as something I could live with.

Agreed.

blacke4dawn
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As long as it's unobtrusive

As long as it's unobtrusive it's fine. That is that it's placed in the same locations as you have planned for any in-game fictional advertisement and done in a style that is consistent with the overall art style of the game.

TheMightyPaladin
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I want to save Spongebob and

I want to save Spongebob and the Crabby Patty formula from Plankton.
The Crunch Berries from Jean Le Feet
The Happy meals from the Hamburgler
The filet o fish from Captain Crook
The Trix from the Rabbit
The the Cocoa Puffs from a cuckoo Sonny
The Secret formula for Kellogg's frosted flakes
The Secret Formula for Coca Cola
and I want to rescue Lucky from those kids that are always after his Lucky Charms
I would also like to help Toucan Sam find the flavors of fruit, in an exotic and dangerous location
And above all I want to use Hostess Fruit Pies to distract a villain.

And if I do missions like that I'd like to earn downloadable coupons.

Radiac
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I think it would probably be

I think it would probably be more like "Company X has sponsored some content, do such content and collect the Company X themed stuff (costume pieces, etc), also you can go to buy actual stuff from Company X in real life and enter proof of purchase codes redeemable in game for stuff"

So like when you buy a 12-pack of Coke you get that "Coke Points" code on the inside of the box, except you'd be entering it somewhere in the game or the Starmart for stuff (personally, I'd prefer to have the Coke Polar Bears somewhere and have them dole out In-Game Coke Rewards, at least in the winter). If anything, I see this as an ad campaign that would encourage gamers to buy more real world consumer products as a way of acquiring in-game perks in CoT, not a way of getting free bottles of Coke just for playing the game. That would be a bad deal for the Coke company, as I see it.

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blacke4dawn
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Radiac wrote:
Radiac wrote:

I think it would probably be more like "Company X has sponsored some content, do such content and collect the Company X themed stuff (costume pieces, etc), also you can go to buy actual stuff from Company X in real life and enter proof of purchase codes redeemable in game for stuff"
So like when you buy a 12-pack of Coke you get that "Coke Points" code on the inside of the box, except you'd be entering it somewhere in the game or the Starmart for stuff (personally, I'd prefer to have the Coke Polar Bears somewhere and have them dole out In-Game Coke Rewards, at least in the winter). If anything, I see this as an ad campaign that would encourage gamers to buy more real world consumer products as a way of acquiring in-game perks in CoT, not a way of getting free bottles of Coke just for playing the game. That would be a bad deal for the Coke company, as I see it.

The problem with this is that not that many companies or even brands are global to make it worthwhile afiak. If you don't have an "alternative" in every country then you will essentially create a market around buying and selling the codes them self.

Personally though I've never been a fan of such "promotions" since if it's not something that I buy regularly I'd rather just pay the whole amount to the game instead.

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blacke4dawn wrote:
blacke4dawn wrote:

Radiac wrote:
I think it would probably be more like "Company X has sponsored some content, do such content and collect the Company X themed stuff (costume pieces, etc), also you can go to buy actual stuff from Company X in real life and enter proof of purchase codes redeemable in game for stuff"
So like when you buy a 12-pack of Coke you get that "Coke Points" code on the inside of the box, except you'd be entering it somewhere in the game or the Starmart for stuff (personally, I'd prefer to have the Coke Polar Bears somewhere and have them dole out In-Game Coke Rewards, at least in the winter). If anything, I see this as an ad campaign that would encourage gamers to buy more real world consumer products as a way of acquiring in-game perks in CoT, not a way of getting free bottles of Coke just for playing the game. That would be a bad deal for the Coke company, as I see it.

The problem with this is that not that many companies or even brands are global to make it worthwhile afiak. If you don't have an "alternative" in every country then you will essentially create a market around buying and selling the codes them self.
Personally though I've never been a fan of such "promotions" since if it's not something that I buy regularly I'd rather just pay the whole amount to the game instead.

Its worth noting that even for "world wide" companies, that they might only run a promotion in a certain country. Mass Effect 2 had promo items (codes) that were only available from the Dr Pepper stuff that was sold in the US. It wasn't available in the UK (from what I remember) even though Dr Pepper is available to buy over here.

cue different rules and regulations about what you can/cannot give away and how it is meant to be done etc etc etc

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blacke4dawn
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Gangrel wrote:
Gangrel wrote:

blacke4dawn wrote:
Radiac wrote:
I think it would probably be more like "Company X has sponsored some content, do such content and collect the Company X themed stuff (costume pieces, etc), also you can go to buy actual stuff from Company X in real life and enter proof of purchase codes redeemable in game for stuff"
So like when you buy a 12-pack of Coke you get that "Coke Points" code on the inside of the box, except you'd be entering it somewhere in the game or the Starmart for stuff (personally, I'd prefer to have the Coke Polar Bears somewhere and have them dole out In-Game Coke Rewards, at least in the winter). If anything, I see this as an ad campaign that would encourage gamers to buy more real world consumer products as a way of acquiring in-game perks in CoT, not a way of getting free bottles of Coke just for playing the game. That would be a bad deal for the Coke company, as I see it.

The problem with this is that not that many companies or even brands are global to make it worthwhile afiak. If you don't have an "alternative" in every country then you will essentially create a market around buying and selling the codes them self.
Personally though I've never been a fan of such "promotions" since if it's not something that I buy regularly I'd rather just pay the whole amount to the game instead.

Its worth noting that even for "world wide" companies, that they might only run a promotion in a certain country. Mass Effect 2 had promo items (codes) that were only available from the Dr Pepper stuff that was sold in the US. It wasn't available in the UK (from what I remember) even though Dr Pepper is available to buy over here.
cue different rules and regulations about what you can/cannot give away and how it is meant to be done etc etc etc

Ahh yes, I forgot about the whole freaking geo-fencing thing. Outside of it essentially being mandated by local regulations I hate that practice.