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MMORPG Game Concepts  » [Poll] In game ads versus virtual items for cash for additional revenue.

15 posts found
  qombi

Novice Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 1187

 
OP  5/05/09 2:33:23 PM#1

 With Sony Online Entertainment's recent addition to most of their games being virtual items for cash in subscription based games I have to ask is there a better way for the gamers? I personally will not pay a subscription for an online game that has virtual items for real life money it it because I think all items should be obtained in the game for the game purchase cost plus your subscription. 

I think there are better alternatives to this such as ads in games that are in no way obtrusive. Let me explain where I think these ads should be placed before you discredit my idea. You guys are familar with the popular MMOs of today. WoW has it's cutscenes when entering dungeons, Everquest has zones that must be entered with a small cutscene, etc etc. Also there is the initial log in screen that could be used to place product ads on.

Which would you prefer to happen? Would you like to continue the trend of virtual items for real life cash or have these product ads placed in cutscenes, game login screen, etc? I personally think the ads wouldn't bother me. I wouldn't care to see a Coca Cola logo during the cutscene of a dungeon entrance in WoW or when taking a flight path in Warhammer. I also wouldn't mind seeing Mt. Dew logos on the login screen as long is there is no additional cost to the player for a subscribtion based game. These external buy game cards for in game loot, and selling virtual items for real life cash turns me away from a game. 

If you had to choose an additional way a MMOs made additional revenue, would you choose real life cash for virtual items or product adds on cutscenes and login screen?

Product Ads On Cutscenes and Login Screen
Virtual items for real life cash
(login to vote)
  Grunty

Hard Core Member

Joined: 4/06/04
Posts: 6908

5/05/09 2:38:26 PM#2

Neither. I pay a subscription for a game. That is enough.

  JB47394

Novice Member

Joined: 10/16/07
Posts: 412

5/05/09 2:55:59 PM#3


Originally posted by grunty
Neither. I pay a subscription for a game. That is enough.

Ditto. Yet the corporations will go the in-game advertising route anyway and we'll end up paying a subscription to look at advertisements, just like we do with subscription television.

This poll would probably attract more attention in "The Pub at MMORPG.COM"

  User Deleted
5/05/09 3:55:23 PM#4

I think ingame ads in a post-apoc or modern MMO would be fantastic. It would be cool to see real life products on the billboards or have old coke bottles among the debris in a post apoc MMO. How about iPods ingame that your characters can listen to or even the ability to buy [favorite band] t-shirts and hats for your character?

Out of place ads, like Airwalk ads in a futuristic or fantaasy MMO? I agree, that's nothing anyone really wants. But with the clamour for immersion immersion immersion that you see all over these forums, one would think that ingame ads would be desirable.

Ads ingame are in console games all the time and they add to the realism of the environment. A "Smoke 'emz" ad on the side of the hockey rink seems a lot more immersion breaking that a Marlboro ad. Not that a cigarette ad makes any sense in an athletic event but you get the point.  :D    Smashing your car through a CocaCola or Hi-C billboard is a lot more fun than smashing through a generic and obviously fake product ad.

The ad space can even be used to serve up game-related content. Picture an electronic sign that rotates through various ads. Some commercials and others about ingame events. One of the companies has the ad system set up so that if an ad is in view for a certain amount of time itis considered 'served' and the next one in rotation is displayed. This means that if you ran by the "Warrior Tournament next Tuesday!" ad and missed it, it would keep displaying til you actually had it in view long enough to acknowledge it. It almost guarantees that you will be notified of info that you want.

It has to bwe the "immersion" issue that people have a problem with. I don't buy this "If there are ads I shouldn't have to pay" stuff unless people are really that naive about the world around them. You pay a cover for a club, but the club gets money to have the drink promos items/posters in the club. You pay money for a movie, but the movie makers got money for product placement there as well. You pay money to use a gym that got discounts or deals on the equipment forhaving the manufacturer's signage all over the place.

 

So, to recap... Ads that are out of place for the setting, I feel are bad. If they fit the setting, then - like Superman 2 or Blade Runner - they add to the realistic feel of the environment/world.


 

  Kyleran

Bitter Vet™

Joined: 9/13/06
Posts: 19396

Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

5/05/09 3:58:06 PM#5

I hate ads, cash shop items get my vote.

 

Arrogant, Condescending, Dismissive, Elitist, "Meany", you speak as if these are bad things?
Kyleran - Bitter Vet ™ since 2006
"This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  techlord

Novice Member

Joined: 7/01/04
Posts: 220

The Lazy MMORPFPS Developer.

5/05/09 7:11:14 PM#6

I'm all for in-game Google Ads and other Ads that paid players.

  ghstwolf

Novice Member

Joined: 3/21/08
Posts: 386

5/05/09 9:28:08 PM#7

I wouldn't have a problem with ads as long as they fit the game.  This would include ficticious products from real companies, like a Cross quill pen or various elixers made my Coca-Cola (fantasy setting games).  Ads that don't fit would bother me, even for logon or load screens.

Item shops absolutely bother me in subscription games.  All they do is increase the subscription price to play at the high end.  Fluff alone won't justify the store for long and it is almost inevitable that game altering items will exist in them eventually.

The thing is, both are money grabs and  I would rather they dug around in someone else's pockets.  Unfortunately, I see this focus on hybrid payment schemes as a continued effort to not innovate and improve.  To me it is no different than the copy protection BS, huge amounts of time and resources spent not making a better game.  <must control urge to rant>

  qombi

Novice Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 1187

 
OP  5/06/09 2:47:58 AM#8

 Take in consideration where I stated that the in game ads would be placed. Not actually in your game world but on cutscene screens. Would it bother you to see a Mtn. Dew logo when loading into the latest dungeon in WoW? Or perhaps a Doritos logos in the game login screen? To me this is less damaging than virtual items for cash in games. I am not suggesting you should see a billboard for Dominos on the Mountain side of the Barrens if playing WoW to be clear. 

I think if I had to pick between the two ways of making additional revenue it would be the ads for me. Thanks for all comments and participation so far. 

 

  User Deleted
5/06/09 12:02:48 PM#9
Originally posted by qombi

 Would it bother you to see a Mtn. Dew logo when loading into the latest dungeon in WoW? Or perhaps a Doritos logos in the game login screen? To me this is less damaging than virtual items for cash in games.

 

 

From both marketing and design standpoints, that's... less than lovely.

- you are reminding the player that they are in a wait state

- as it is a loading screen, there's no way to bypass it unless you are artificially creating a wait which is more ridiculous

- players will perceive it as intrusive and annoying.

  JB47394

Novice Member

Joined: 10/16/07
Posts: 412

5/06/09 12:58:09 PM#10

Worse, it would quickly be used as an opportunity to present a video advertisement accompanied by the message "The game will finish loading in 30 seconds". I can see games being structured to accomodate advertisements between various chapters or quests or whatever. Clever advertisers would actually use the characters from the game to push their products. How about a Tauran druid breaking out a health drink and saying how great it is for recovering electrolytes after a hard fight with a demon?

In fairness to the original poster, I missed the "If you had to choose" part of the original question. I'd choose paying for virtual items. That said, if any game pushes an experience on me that I'm not interested in, I'll leave. This is entertainment, and if I'm not being entertained, I'll go elsewhere. I switched off my television a couple years ago because I no longer found it entertaining. The advertisements were just too much. I switched off Ultima Online a couple weeks after I started it because PvP was too intrusive to my entertainment. I so wish they had stuck with a PvE game. The gaming industry might have played out in a very different way. But that's a different kettle of fish.

Any technique that intrudes on my entertainment means that I lose my ability to be entertained. Advertisements are the worst. Being required to pay for virtual items is bad. Having virtual items available for purchase that are purely optional is tolerable. Just keep the buying decision out of my face.

And keep off my lawn.

  ghstwolf

Novice Member

Joined: 3/21/08
Posts: 386

5/06/09 2:13:43 PM#11


Originally posted by LynxJSA
 
From both marketing and design standpoints, that's... less than lovely.
- you are reminding the player that they are in a wait state
- as it is a loading screen, there's no way to bypass it unless you are artificially creating a wait which is more ridiculous
- players will perceive it as intrusive and annoying.

Exactly what I was thinking.

Taken a step further, there would be more pressure on the devs to add more load screens and by design make them longer (because artificial will be modded out).

Modern and future/post appocalyptic could place in game billboards. These would not annoy me, as they don't interrupt my time or seem out of place in their world. Heck I wouldn't mind running rum related missions for a Captain Morgan in a fantasy setting. JB's Gatorade example only bothers me because of the electrolytes, make it a quest where you need gator blood, some cloth to filter it and some water and it works.

The point is if you must include extra revenue streams, in game is the place to do it. Just make it a good fit for the world. Revenue wise, I'm sure you could get a pretty good setup fee for a quest (25-50K out of the major companies) plus a residual per completion.

  qombi

Novice Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 1187

 
OP  5/06/09 2:41:53 PM#12
Originally posted by ghstwolf

 


Originally posted by LynxJSA
 
From both marketing and design standpoints, that's... less than lovely.
- you are reminding the player that they are in a wait state
- as it is a loading screen, there's no way to bypass it unless you are artificially creating a wait which is more ridiculous
- players will perceive it as intrusive and annoying.

 

Exactly what I was thinking.

Taken a step further, there would be more pressure on the devs to add more load screens and by design make them longer (because artificial will be modded out).

Modern and future/post appocalyptic could place in game billboards. These would not annoy me, as they don't interrupt my time or seem out of place in their world. Heck I wouldn't mind running rum related missions for a Captain Morgan in a fantasy setting. JB's Gatorade example only bothers me because of the electrolytes, make it a quest where you need gator blood, some cloth to filter it and some water and it works.

The point is if you must include extra revenue streams, in game is the place to do it. Just make it a good fit for the world. Revenue wise, I'm sure you could get a pretty good setup fee for a quest (25-50K out of the major companies) plus a residual per completion.

 

You are thinking too much about the what ifs and mights. I am asking if you had to choose one way a MMO made additional revenue either logos on cutscenes or virtual items for real life cash which would you choose? The ads would be just how I described them. There would be no additional load times, no more additional cutscenes etc. The only difference would be when loading into a dungeon instead of the original lovely game picture being shown .. you may have a few logos pasted around. 

Would you prefer virtual items for real life cash over this if it came down to another way for a company to make additional revenue? Thanks for your post. 

  ghstwolf

Novice Member

Joined: 3/21/08
Posts: 386

5/06/09 6:59:51 PM#13

Honestly for the options given I'd cancel or never join in the first place.

IMO you've ignored a very workable in-game alternative revenue stream and the simple idea that people will quit/won't play.   Think beyond the pathetic attempts of current games to bleed of us additional money.  It makes no sense that Devs who include load screen ads won't create additional load screens or lengthen load times.  The ad money will be too alluring, more loads for more ads delivered and longer screens for a better ad rate.

Item malls are the same thing, roll out/ promise fluff- which doesn't bring in as much as they hope.  So in go game altering items, often required at the highest levels.  Pretend otherwise if you must, but a Dev that plans on doing either is saying from the outset "This game isn't good enough to support itself on the subs".

  User Deleted
5/06/09 11:38:46 PM#14

For most games even ones as "basic"* as a PHP the free accounts who only ever give any form of revenue are a "loss leader"** in hopes of baiting people for other services and for keeping the community full.
The business plan of advertising isn't advertising itself.

*It's not basic but you get the idea
**purposefully low price typically at a price where the company actually losses money on the sale to sell other stuff.

 

  qombi

Novice Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 1187

 
OP  5/07/09 2:37:11 PM#15

 Real life cash for items in a subscription based game can have the same affect. I know many people who will not play Sony Online Entertainment's games such as Everquest, Everquest 2, and Vanguard because of their adoption of these greedy practices. I for one have been turned away from their products because of this.