Quake Wars will have in-game ads

The Enemy Territory: Quake Wars public beta is just about to kick off, but Splash Damage has decided to mention just one more thing before it starts dishing out beta keys. According to a blog post by Splash Damage managing director Neil Postlethwaite, Quake Wars will have in-game advertisements. Postlethwaite says the ads will help cover ongoing support for the game. They will appear in “select locations” and Splash Damage is reportedly taking great care to ensure all ads are non-intrusive and “appropriate for the game world.” Postlethwaite justifies the move further by adding, “In fact, there are some places it’s quite odd not to have an advertisement – the sides of container trucks, for example.”

That may all sound okay so far, but this next bit might leave a bad taste in some players’ mouths. “The company providing the ad system does not and will not store any personal information or data that otherwise can be used to identify you. All they track is if and how long you look at the advertisements.” In other words, the game will phone home anonymously to relay your ad viewing stats to the ad company.

Comments closed
    • Conan
    • 12 years ago

    This is and open letter to Managing Director Neil Postlethwaite of Splash Damage’s.

    Allow me to start out with your announcement of in-game advertising. We all know the only reason you made your post, because of a mistake of having billboards in your beta map. Otherwise you would of done what EA/DICE did, and had a white piece of paper fall out of the game box, informing the consumer about spy-ware install on their personnel computer, after the consumer had already bought the copy and opened your game. This level of dishonest will not go unchallenged. It was obviously a mistake on your part since you made that announcement a day after the beta when you realized that map had billboards.

    y{< For the last four years, we've put all of our effort into making Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars. So, we're not planning to ship this game and walk away. We want to keep supporting ETQW in as many ways as possible. We'll be maintaining the persistent stats servers and the community site, and continuing to support ETQW with updates and improvements. <}y It is your morale responsibility to support a product that you produced. That is a common business practice and the laws of our land up to a certain point. Persistent stats servers are funded by higher game server prices that your OGSP [ Official Game Server Provider ] charges the consumers. And as far as updates.......that your best interest to update your product for your own reputation as a game producer. Now for your spin on 4 years in making Quake Wars. Allow me to ask you a simple question. Is this the reason for in-game advertising to cover your cost overruns? Are you that incompetent as manger directer to produce a product on time, and within budget? Is this the real reason to advertise.....to cover your yourself? If your answer is no.....then it must be greed. y{< To help cover this level of on-going support without passing the costs on to the gamer, ETQW will feature appropriate advertisements in select locations of our levels. The ads aren't intrusive and you won't have to interact with them; they'll just be part of the normal environment. In fact, there are some places it's quite odd not to have an advertisement - the sides of container trucks, for example. Great care is being taken to ensure that all our ads are appropriate for the game world and we have absolute approval rights in this area. If it's not appropriate or it's distracting, it won't go in. <}y What your passing onto consumers is snake oil. After your original deception about not following EA/DICE ranked servers........then about in-game advertising you expect us to believe those comments? To cover your cost? Again you just admitted that you went over budget. If your game is successful should their be a need to advertise in a game that consumers had bought? Wouldn't that be in kind of advertising in pay-per view channel? Now in case you had forgotten. Most of us....who are older escape the real world by playing games on-line. The last thing we want is to have consumer products shoved down our throats when playing. That is the very reason is why you failed in the first place, as Managing Director of Splash Damage and Quake Wars. You had forgotten your roots.....as a gamer. y{< The company providing the ad system does not and will not store any personal information or data that otherwise can be used to identify you. All they track is if and how long you look at the advertisements. <}y This is a dangerous road to travel on if we as consumers except this. y{< For those of you participating in the upcoming beta, you will get a chance to see them for yourself very soon. And of course we will be releasing a demo prior to the retail launch of the game so everyone can check them out first. <}y Now this is were you attempt to deceive the public. You stated upcoming beta. [ As if you were informing the public before the beta ]You made this post after the first release of the beta!!! Upon realizing that mistake, you made that post informing about the ads. All what we have to do is check the dates on your forum when this post was made......and the date of the first beta release. Since i pointed that out on your forum....those post been deleted and i was issued Infractions. y{< Choosing to place ads in Enemy Territory was not a decision we made lightly. However, in doing so we hope to be able to provide a higher level of on-going support to the Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars community than would have been possible otherwise. <}y Of course it was a tough decision to make. It was your incompetents that cause for this decision in the first place. If you had produced this project on time and within budget this decision would never been made. I'm sorry it had to come to this.......but your incompetent is not our problem.

    • Forge
    • 12 years ago

    I’ve been playing BF2142 for quite a while, and I had actually forgotten about the IGA crap. The other day, though, I was slogging uphill through the middle of a bombed-out 22nd century city, firing my futuristic sniper rifle and throwing grenades, and I stopped cold.

    A huge billboard for Ghost Rider on DVD and Blu-Ray! Gosh, I see that movie in the background on Star Trek all the time!

    Yeah, doesn’t break the atmosphere *at all*.

    And yes, I stood dumbstruck, staring at it till someone shot me.

    • Pax-UX
    • 12 years ago

    Well if it phones home to a set domain I think I might be editing my hosts file…

      • Severus
      • 12 years ago

      Given that everyone’s thought of this already they’ll make connectivity to the ad servers a requirement to play, or more likely, do both ad serving and game play via the game server’s IP address with the game server proxying the connections to the ad server.

    • albundy
    • 12 years ago

    it would not surprise me if the game publishers threw in malicious adware, so they can tailor the advertisements to what websites you visit, what applications you run, or even what you type. there’s big business to be made.

      • Severus
      • 12 years ago

      You’re like the FUD fairy, spreading baseless doubt wherever you go ๐Ÿ™‚

      • SPOOFE
      • 12 years ago

      That bit of fearmongering has been looming over the Internet for over ten years. Yes, malware can spread through ads. No, it’s not every ad. No, every form of advertisement isn’t a sign of Fascism.

      T’hell with it. Dev costs are idiotic, and the risk of return is higher than ever. I’ll take ’em at their word when they say it’ll be non-intrusive, safe, et cetera… until the game comes out, that is. If it’s an awesome game, and having in-game ads helped it to be awesome (note the repetition of the hypothetical), then I’m all for it.

        • sigher
        • 12 years ago

        You take advertisers at their word? perhaps you should have yourself committed

          • l33t-g4m3r
          • 12 years ago

          heheh sportsmen for bush.

    • FireGryphon
    • 12 years ago

    The coolest part of fake game ads was seeing how well the game designers coudl build a game world. They’d either create things that fit the world, or funny stuff, or both. Real life ads will cut down on the creativity factor and be less immersive in all games except straight up sims, since a fantasy world isn’t meant to remind you of the real one.

    • idiotrepublican
    • 12 years ago

    I went to the theater this past weekend and it showed 15-20 minutes of ads. Thats before any trailers. Now that is extremely irritating. I take note of the ads alright, I make sure not to buy any of their products. Its like getting spammed in the theater!

    Seeing a coke ad on the side of a truck as it rolls by in a game is not that big of a deal. But! Could this be the first beach head to more aggressive ads in game?

    For example:

    When you kill a boss or meet an objective the game screams out.
    “You have killed Armageddon, you win the Pepsi challenge for today and get 2x the bonus points!” All the while a Pepsi flag rises from the dead corpse and you have an in game Pepsi commercial playing on it!

    Now that would be very disturbing. I hope it never gets that bad.

    You guys also have to remember Google(the new Microsoft) just bought an in game ad IP. So it might be just the beginning.

    /starts dusting off his old non internet games

      • NeXus^
      • 12 years ago

      Ahh good old abandonware, no ads there ๐Ÿ™‚ I love dosbox for playing old games!

        • idiotrepublican
        • 12 years ago

        Hmmm, I need to dust off my old Apple IIc and start playing Taipan again. Dos games are a little to advanced for me ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Joerdgs
    • 12 years ago

    First see. Then conclude.

    Maybe it sucks, maybe it’s hardly noticeable.

      • Cuhulin
      • 12 years ago

      And let the gaming company say “See, no one cares — didn’t depress sales at all!” I don’t think so.

    • Corrado
    • 12 years ago

    You guys are also forgetting that it costs exorbitantly more money to create a game these days than it did just 5 years ago. Games are getting bigger, going multi-platform, licensing fees aren’t getting smaller, higher resolution textures, more textures, more animation, more different character models, higher quality sound creation, media licensing fees (remember the whole 30 cents per DVD is why it took them so long to go from 6 cd’s to 1 dvd), more people working, more insurance costs, etc etc etc.

    This isn’t to help them necessarily get rich, its to help them make a profit PERIOD.

      • Logan[TeamX]
      • 12 years ago

      So what you’re saying is you’re sucking at the teat of selloutland? First it’ll be static ads, then it’ll be video ads ala Blade Runner and other great movies and finally all of the above with “hostage time” adverts between level loads.

      As another poster mentioned earlier, we’re now subjected to 10-15 minutes of advertising in “ad reels” before previews start in theatres. Then, there’s the odd ad IN the previews.

      It’s control via shellshock. After seeing so many ads for so long every day, you just stop caring about what’s put in front of you. After that, you eventually go out and buy something that was you saw advertised (repeatedly) recently.

      Case in point? A lot of those damn “Wii would like to play” commercials eventually got me to buy one of the buggers. They’re cool, but I still figured I was due for an XBOX 360 or a PS3 first. Less advertising (in my area) for either of those, less chance of me buying it overall I figure.

      Ultimately? “Halo 8, sponsored by Jolt Cola and Ruffles potato chips – your gaming buddies!”

    • Eckre
    • 12 years ago

    well if they are trying to make these games as real as possible… go outside somewhere in public and find a place without ads.

    • danny e.
    • 12 years ago

    another game danny e. will not buy.
    .. i will not buy any game with dynamic ads. … or any game that requires a net connection to play.

      • wierdo
      • 12 years ago

      Wait till they have ad-driven games running on Steam crapware, that’ll be just great ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Well anyway, yeah I’m not buying this one.

      • DASQ
      • 12 years ago

      So you.. uhh.. don’t play online games? Or MMORPG’s?

        • sigher
        • 12 years ago

        I agree with danny e., and if i means no more games so be it I say.

        • wierdo
        • 12 years ago

        I play Guildwars, free MMORPG after buying the installation CD. Does that count?

          • Joerdgs
          • 12 years ago

          Don’t say you didn’t buy the expansion packs.

            • wierdo
            • 12 years ago

            I did, for about $15-25 each ๐Ÿ˜› I only buy stuff on discount.

            Not bad to get a full stand-alone continent every six months, no? Also saved me on buying about a couple of games for the first year of playing it cause there was enough in there to keep my interest for that long.

        • danny e.
        • 12 years ago

        i said “require net connection”. i do play some games online.. but very rarely.. and only StarCraft. no other. .. and really dont care to.

      • StashTheVampede
      • 12 years ago

      Clearly you aren’t the target demo, no biggie. Wait until the next set of FPS games roll, without MP and spend your money there.

    • blitzy
    • 12 years ago

    I hate to be harsh because there is a chance this game could be cool, but the beta better be damned good if there’s any hope of me buying it. The unfortunate problem I see in his argument is that games these days are commonly released as what I consider ‘late beta’ quality more so than well tested bug free software. I would hope that they’re genuinely interested in using the revenue to provide /[

    • Nullvoid
    • 12 years ago

    So they’ll make money initially from the ads and then make even more money from the info on advert preference that is generated over time? I can see why the developers would be rubbing their hands in glee but I wish they’d reconsider and leave all the market research for surveys outside of the games.

    • opinionated
    • 12 years ago

    I thought any ad you click on the internet either sent information back to the advertiser or placed a cookie on your computer or both. How is this any different? If you don’t want any information sent back to the advertiser then don’t click on the ad.

    It’s possible that while we may not see a decrease in game prices because of these ads we may see prices stabilize for a while. The costs of developing more complex games is going up. I’m not sure I wouldn’t rather have ads subsidize the cost of development so that I don’t have to pay more for the games.

      • stdPikachu
      • 12 years ago

      Perhaps if you blow the ad up, it’ll delete the cookie?

      • sigher
      • 12 years ago

      OMFG you are the ideal sucker, first it was “we make ads to make games cheaper” then they put in ads and the games don’t get cheaper at all, instead the nasty buggers just get richer, so now it’s people saying “the ads prevent a price hike”.
      Next they will justify ads by saying “due to so many not buying games anymore because of the ads the ads are needed to fund games”, that would nicely complete the circle of madness and befit this day and age.

    • Ruiner
    • 12 years ago

    The game better f’ing sell for $20 if they are going to do this.

    Anywhoo, it will get hacked/modded out pretty quickly.

      • DASQ
      • 12 years ago

      It won’t. It will sell for the same price, but they’ll be able to host a stats server. Wow. Clearly cost justified. Oh wait, AND the community site! Because there aren’t already 49 different Quake Wars forums already!

    • PRIME1
    • 12 years ago

    Maybe they will have pr0n ads.

      • NeXus^
      • 12 years ago

      That’s what I’m hoping for. Especially when a sniper hones in on you to be distracted by a curvy pair of melons on an ad sign behind you, and misses his shot ๐Ÿ˜€ Thanks for the distraction, baby!

        • sigher
        • 12 years ago

        sad

    • Slade
    • 12 years ago

    “Where you at?”

    /[<"I'm by the stack of crates next to Blue base."<]/ "Which side?" /[<"Sh][t, I don't know! There's a huge tampax ad right behind me though."<]/ "Gottcha! I'll be right there!" ^_^'

      • IntelMole
      • 12 years ago
      • NeronetFi
      • 12 years ago

      LOL!!!!!!!! that was priceless

      • anand
      • 12 years ago

      It’d be funny if the ads were individually tailored for each user depending on their buying habits.

      “Where are you at?”
      “I’m over here by the Superbowl sign. Where are you?”
      “I’m here by the “America’s Top Model” store.”
      “…”
      “I mean, by the Guiness truck. Mmm, beer good?”

    • Shinare
    • 12 years ago

    I dont care if its immersion killing or hardly noticeable.. I have a huge problem with paying for software and then “getting” to watch advertisements. I play video games to forget about “the real world” not to make it so completely like it that I start disliking the same exact things I am in a virtual world to get away from. Whats next, a virtual wife to nag at me to get s%$! done around the house!!!

    /rant

      • stdPikachu
      • 12 years ago

      <advocacy style=”devil”>
      Don’t you (I mean in general, not specifically) already pay to watch adverts in your cable/satellite subscription? Originally the fees for those were to have less ads, but now it just seems to be as ad-ridden as any other medium.

      Now games just seem to be turning the same way; proof that greed is endemic to any profession involving humans ๐Ÿ™‚

      I’d love to tell you all to boycott games with in-game ads, but that usually met with cries of “But I neeeeeeeeed teh shiny!” or similar.

        • sigher
        • 12 years ago

        Sigh, so true, they will get away with it and the small percentage of us that have more taste will have to seek entertainment elsewhere :/

        • wierdo
        • 12 years ago

        Internet replaced cable in my household completely, try it, really it’s not that hard at all living without it ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Of course, can’t say the same for a TV addicted family household though.

          • stdPikachu
          • 12 years ago

          You’re preaching to the choir, man ๐Ÿ˜‰

          I don’t have cable or satellite (I’m in the UK where Virgin Media and Sky reign supreme) and just use a MythTV PVR to capture digital stuff offof the airwaves. Haven’t seen an ad in years, except for when my flatmate insists on watching the footy “live” and I happen to make a cuppa when the ads are on…

          Much like yourself I imagine, I consider the internet (and, to a lesser extent, computer games) to be a much more worthwhile entertainment medium than the completely passive TV. Check out Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe on computer games if you can track it down!

    • herothezero
    • 12 years ago

    How is this a good idea…talk about immersion-killing.

      • StashTheVampede
      • 12 years ago

      Think of the environment. You’re fighting in the future, probably a mix of cities, buildings and equipment.

      Who is to say that you won’t travel down a highway, travel past a bus stop where an ad is posted on the side? How about next to a building that has some posters up? What about that civilian truck you’re hiding behind? There is probably a good chance it has a logo of the truck’s owner on it!

      WITHOUT ads, that kind of game would feel even more disconnected.

        • Severus
        • 12 years ago

        True but unless I’m playing a game set on contemporary earth (which relatively few games are, and certainly not this one), any advert for a contemporary earth product or service is anachronistic and an immersion killer.

        Adverts for Ford in a game set in the middle ages? Adverts for DVD rental in a game set in the future?

          • StashTheVampede
          • 12 years ago

          That’s the point they are addressing — a balance between which ads and their location. If you see a large civilian truck with a U-Haul ad on the side, it wouldn’t be MUCH out of place even if it wasn’t on Earth ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Sargent Duck
    • 12 years ago

    /[

    • Soul Colossus
    • 12 years ago

    have ads in previous games ever been successfully modded out?

      • Bensam123
      • 12 years ago

      No, matter of a fact, I can’t think of any game that has in game ads that has been successful yet. About the best you can do is BF2142, but that is just a mod for BF2.

      A testament to those who are in charge of making the game, the financial department, not the game developers.

    • Hattig
    • 12 years ago

    Maybe there will be adverts for washing powder … “Super biological action removes even the most stubborn blood stains … at 30C!”.

    The problem with games requiring realistic advertising is that in order to use this model in your game you are going to have to base it in a certain scenario where those products exist. This means that fantasy worlds, far out future stuff, etc, becomes less desirable as a game idea.

    • SonicSilicon
    • 12 years ago

    y[

    • DASQ
    • 12 years ago

    What exactly does “appropriate for the game world” mean?

    Are they going to advertise weaponry and armored vehicles?

      • YvonneJean
      • 12 years ago

      Soda, salty snacks, fatty snacks, and every other snack. Maybe even energy drinks ๐Ÿ™‚

        • sigher
        • 12 years ago

        Intel CPU’s I expect, they were the first 3rd party advertisers on the bandwagon for steam ads I understand.

          • Krogoth
          • 12 years ago

          Forced, dynamic in-game ads = extremely lame.

          I can understand if it were for “official servers” to help pay for bandwidth and hosting costs.

          For private servers it should be up to the host’s discretion.

          IMO, in-game ads have absolutely no business in a single-player game.

    • Corrado
    • 12 years ago

    It won’t be phoning anywhere after I put a null route to the ad server’s IP.

      • Jigar
      • 12 years ago

      Good one .. i was thinking exactly the same thing.. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Severus
      • 12 years ago

      But if they’ve got any sense they’ll proxy it to you via the game servers.

      • Nitrodist
      • 12 years ago

      Too bad the ads will be from the server.

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