We are surrounded by ads everywhere we go, especially online. YouTube shows me two ads at a time, Twitch spams ads before I can even watch a stream, and online games throw ads in my face with hard to find buttons to close them. But you know what I can count on to not show me ads? My Xbox, at least for now.
All this is about to change with a new advertising platform, playerWON coming to the scene. Sounds more like playerLOSE in this situation but sure, let’s go with that. The platform is owned by Simulmedia, which is a TV ad tech company. Simulmedia has already been busy making deals with EA and Hi-Rez Studios according to Axios. Wasting no time to get this new ad platform rolling. They will allow brands to display ads in console games.
The thinking behind this is that the young gaming crowd is just not spending money with all the free games out right now. Simulmedia’s OTT Dave Madden told Axios, “The acceleration of Free-to-play (F2P) games across Console and PC, like Fortnite, Apex Legends, Call of Duty Warzone and Roblox, means that audiences and play time have seen explosive growth, yet the vast majority of players, over 90%, never spend money F2P games,”
While I do get this point I think the F2P market is opening up games to people that might not have been able to always play them before now. Many of these people simply don’t want to spend money on the game. While there are many ways for the company to sell skins and season passes not everyone is taking them up on that. But giving people advertisements I’m not sure is the best way to counter it.
From what it sounds like, players will be able to choose to watch an ad in exchange for some type of in game award. Think skins or cosmetic items most likely. While this means it won’t be displayed right in a players face, it sure gets a step closer to that point. What will stop these companies from forcing ads between matches with no way of opting out? It is a slippery slope and something we have seen happen before on media platforms.
I think it will be interesting to see this start to role out. We have seen ads pop up more and more in streaming and gaming unfortunately. Hopefully this does not go to far.