Getting Ahead In Advertising
Electronic Arts have had a busy couple of weeks – from the announcement of the EA Play Live spotlight broadcast series to the acquisition of the mobile development team Playdemic; there’s been plenty of news coming out from the iconic gaming company. However, recently they’ve caught some controversy due to an Axiom report that outlines a brand-new system for in-game advertising that EA had allegedly been intending to begin to implement into their games.
The system, called playerWON and developed by Simulmedia, allows developers to code ad spots from larger brands like you would see on TV directly into their games. Through an ad server, Simulmedia will be able to determine whether or not players have watched through an ad in its entirety, and players will be able to agree to watch ads in exchange for in-game rewards. This is a strategy usually employed by mobile games. Still, Simulmedia has quoted free-to-play games like Fortnite, Apex Legends, Call Of Duty: Warzone, and Roblox as possible targets for playerWON.
In a statement to PC Gamer, an EA spokesperson clarified the company’s stance on in-game advertising: “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.”
Despite this assurance, however, there’s still a mystery to be solved – The initial Axios report that outlined the system claimed that Simulmedia and EA had struck a deal. Why one party now denies this has yet to be revealed, but it may be worth keeping an eye on – EA are no strangers to controversy, and there’s still plenty to be unearthed in this case.