Microsoft’s in-game ad subsidiary, Massive, has revealed its intention to include not only static ads during gameplay, but video ads during ‘game breaks’.
The case example is PC title Killing Floor. According to this article, Massive, in partnership with developer Tripwire Interactive, has renewed its pact to include video ads ‘during the game’s built-in down time’.
JJ Richards, head of the in-game advertising agency at Massive, has claimed that there will be an attempt at standardizing these tactics as Massive “want to be part of every media plan”.
We’ve done a bit of research and found a Gamasutra blog post from Alan Wilson, Vice-President of Tripwire, dated 23rd October where he explains why they went with the ads:
“We are set up to run video pieces in the in-game lobby, where players gather before kicking off a match. It will run 10-15 second video pieces – trailers. We earn cash off those ads. And there have been a few people reacting to it, on the lines of ‘I paid for the game, some of us bought the DLC, to support future FREE content – so why should we have to look at ads?’ ”
Wilson answered this question by claiming it was the best, and most unobtrusive, place to put ads.
“…there was our Important Rule for ads: it must not be intrusive and must not interfere with Gameplay. Massive got the idea instantly – hence the idea to serve trailers in the lobby, while people are tooling around before starting a match…so, did people buying the $2 DLC pay for the update. No way. Did it help? Yes, of course. So now we are trialling the in-game advertising. How much will we earn from that? I dunno. Time will tell.”
It’s all part of Massive’s new drive to find further avenues for advertising in-game and on gaming platforms.
Microsoft will host the ‘Advertising Gaming Upfront’ event on Thursday at the Lincoln Center, New York where they will announce new partnerships alongside a case study on the recent Kia Soul campaign that featured on Xbox Live. We reckon they might talk about this new ‘game break’ ad tactic too at some point – perhaps in relation to the upcoming season two of 1 vs. 100.
So, the question remains: do you want these ads to go from background distractions to now directly interrupting your gaming time?