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Ads Retroactively Added To Wipeout HD, Soon Others

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the brought-to-you-by-frungy,-the-sport-of-kings dept.

PlayStation (Games) 299

An anonymous reader writes "American users of Wipeout HD might have noticed that there's an advertisement showing up all of a sudden during loading, both during online and offline play. This, according to a poster on the well-known gaming forum NeoGAF, is being done covertly. The writer suspects that the display software was installed during update 2.01, and the ad-content is now being snuck in. Gamasutra has a story on the company responsible for the software to deliver these ads, Double Fusion, which said it plans to launch in-game advertising in 'another handful' of PS3 games by the end of the year. So, what's next? Can we look forward to fighting the Kool-Aid Man and zombified Mars bars in Uncharted, or is there anything that can be done to hinder companies from adding advertisements retroactively, without the customer's prior knowledge?"

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299 comments

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Ad blocking (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935635)

In your router. I'm looking at you DD-WRT.

Re:Ad blocking (3, Insightful)

gmezero (4448) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935673)

This is only going to work if the ad server is not on Sony's delivery system.

And here I was planning to buy the DLC this week. I'm seriously reconsidering that idea. :(

I think if we want to protest this, refuse to buy the expansion release. Unfortunately the reality is you'll likely end up in the minority as most of the sheeple out there don't care enough to fight this.

Re:Ad blocking (5, Insightful)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936013)

Yep. I'd estimate in my experience for every 20 or so people who say "Screw them, I'm not buying that", 1 will actually follow through.

I've boycotted a hell of a lot of games over the years due to copy protection, greed of the developer etc... I realise my boycott makes no difference to the company. But it does make a difference to me.

Sony will make more money from the advertising than they'll lose from disgruntled customers sadly, until such time as the consumer at large grows a set and stands up to say "Enough".

Re:Ad blocking (4, Informative)

gmezero (4448) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936199)

FWIW, I just fired up my PS3 and refused the 2.01 update (I never played the game online anyways) and no advertisements. I know the other site is saying that it may not be tied to the update but unless I start seeing them I'll conclude that it is.

So, that settles that. I'm not buying the DLS or accepting the 2.01 update.

Re:Ad blocking (4, Funny)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936575)

Realizing that 50% of consumers lack the genes necessary to "grow a set", I stand by, ready to offer the use of my set. For a small recompense, of course. The wife wouldn't like me to be giving it away for free. (She is so mercenary!)

ESRB (4, Interesting)

Lord Byron II (671689) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935641)

Contact the ratings board and complain that the content of the game has changed.

Re:ESRB (-1, Redundant)

Artifex (18308) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935703)

Contact the ratings board and complain that the content of the game has changed.

Not if the ads only appear during online play. All games that go online have a disclaimer that ratings/content may change during online play.

Re:ESRB (2, Informative)

angelus errare (984448) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935739)

I don't have the DLC so I can't confirm anything, but posters on Kotaku have reported that the ads appear even if you aren't connected online. And I don't believe the description of the DLC warns people about this.

READ THE GOD DAMNED SUMMARY (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935897)

To all you assholes who didn't see it, here is the first sentence of the summary. Yes, the first.

American users of Wipeout HD might have noticed that there's an advertisement showing up all of the sudden during loading, both during online and offline play.

See how it says ONLINE AND OFFLINE PLAY? You do see that now, right? Okay. Now we don't need to have a whole thread dedicated to a question that was answered in the first sentence of the summary. Yay, score one for reading comprehension!

Sorry, but really how do BOTH of you miss that?

Re:READ THE GOD DAMNED SUMMARY (1)

morghanphoenix (1070832) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936591)

This is slashdot. How many people actually RTFA?

Re:ESRB (4, Funny)

ethan0 (746390) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935753)

may I recommend reading the very first sentence of the summary?

wait, sorry, forgot what site I was on for a moment.

Re:ESRB (3, Informative)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936551)

They appear during online and offline play. However, that's a pretty bullshit disclaimer for them to use though. That is like the "your contract terms may change without notice" that got certain companies sued. [computerworld.com] Sorry, that's the easiest dig, but there are other examples.

It's called the "you're fucked clause", and companies love it.

Re:ESRB (1)

gmezero (4448) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935709)

I don't think advertising has any impact on ratings unless the nature of the advertisement is mature content and the game is rated for everyone. I haven't seen the ad yet so we'll have to see.

Re:ESRB (1)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935957)

I don't know about the ESRB, but for movie ratings, even simply reshuffling scenes or cutting scenes OUT will invalidate the rating. This ticked me off, because the 'unrated' Lust, Caution DVD release is actually a censored version of the NR-17 theatrical release.

It doesn't matter that the content added is objectionable or not, but that it is now has different content than what was initially rated. And what if (GASP) they advertised smoking, drinks, or guns!

Re:ESRB (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935775)

so long as it is not offensive, what's the issue?

Re:ESRB (1)

gbarules2999 (1440265) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935851)

There is no issue. It would just be hilarious.

Re:ESRB (4, Insightful)

causality (777677) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936015)

so long as it is not offensive, what's the issue?

The point is that a change to the game's content could make them have to go through the ESRB review/rating process all over again, causing delays and maybe additional expenses for them. It'd be a way of making it a bit more of a hassle for them to assume that the game you bought with no such advertisements has now become a billboard.

I think ESRB makes an exception for "online play" (I'd speculate this is because of the difficulty/undesirability of censoring the other players) but it seems there were changes to offline play as well.

Re:ESRB (3, Interesting)

LihTox (754597) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936385)

Advertising is an (often feeble, granted) attempt at mind control, and therefore offensive by definition.

Re:ESRB (5, Insightful)

Arker (91948) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936497)

I rather think if this were a game I had already paid for, sans ads, that suddenly started showing them I would find the change quite offensive.

Re:ESRB (1)

the simurgh (1327825) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935955)

contact the fcc saying that this new patch is an illegal attempt to end run around the rules governing in game ads and such. as for the koolaide man & zombie fied mars bars can we get this free or will i have to pay. becuase if it's free i'm in.

All of A sudden (1, Informative)

gumpish (682245) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935647)

The expression is "all of a sudden".

The people who say "all of the sudden" are the same people who say "could of" and "for all intensive purposes". You heard something that sounded to you like words you know but didn't apply the critical thinking part of your brain and ask "Does this expression make sense?".

Re:All of A sudden (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935675)

Maybe they did it on accident? That'd be really ironic.

Re:All of A sudden (1)

SpectreBlofeld (886224) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935719)

"All of a sudden" doesn't really make any sense either. "Suddenly" does work and it's more succinct to boot. /whatever "to boot" means

Re:All of A sudden (5, Funny)

Anonymous CowHardon (1605679) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935939)

"Suddenly" means "in the manner of a sudden," or more succinctly, "of a sudden," and to indicate that something isn't only partially of a sudden, we say it's "all of a sudden." We don't use the definite article "the" because there isn't only one particular sudden. (If there were, we might spell at as a proper noun and possibly even worship it. All hail the Almighty Sudden!)

Re:All of A sudden (1)

Kral_Blbec (1201285) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935789)

For all intents and purposes, I think you mean to say "for all intents and purposes".

Re:All of A sudden (1)

Kalriath (849904) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935855)

No, no he didn't.

WHOOOOOOOSH!

Re:All of A sudden (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28936039)

Woosh! Did you even read what he is bitching about?

Re:All of A sudden (1)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935935)

I dunno if it's the same. "for all intensive purposes" is clearly an eggcorn. "All of a sudden" may just be a simple malaprop.

Re:All of A sudden (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28936535)

I dunno if it's the same. "for all intensive purposes" is clearly an eggcorn. "All of a sudden" may just be a simple malaprop.

I thought it was 'for all intents and purposes', see /. is good for something

Re:All of A sudden (1)

causality (777677) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935965)

didn't apply the critical thinking part of your brain and ask "Does this expression make sense?".

Can this description include anyone who says "new-key-ler" to describe atomic phenomena?

Guitar Hero World tour had ads also (1)

RedK (112790) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935663)

Coming in the future ? It's already been done, and it's going to keep being done. This is nothing new and short of not buying games with ads or product placement, good luck getting rid of it.

Re:Guitar Hero World tour had ads also (4, Insightful)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935713)

Some ads and product placement make sense in the context of a game. In sports stadiums or racing tracks, they may even ad realism. You just have to do it right.

But a video during a loading screen -- and worse, making it ten seconds longer? That's NOT acceptable.

Re:Guitar Hero World tour had ads also (1)

angelus errare (984448) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935757)

Yeah, the Red Bull ads in a previous Wipeout game made sense, but State Farm Insurance? Are gamers a big demographic for them?

Re:Guitar Hero World tour had ads also (1)

FingerSoup (928761) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935863)

Yeah, you never know what kind of damage you're going to do when you crash your racer... Life insurance might be handy....

Re:Guitar Hero World tour had ads also (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935841)

Billboards for "Toca Cola" always annoyed me more than anything. I don't care if the gameworld is plastered with real world ads... as long as they fit in. If it's BF2142 style blasted-landscapes that ad had better look the part, if it's some pristine billboard for something that just annoys me.

Re:Guitar Hero World tour had ads also (1)

Sporkinum (655143) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935925)

I have never seen any ads in BF2142, as I blocked the range in my router before I bought the game. Assuming they come from a different server, it shouldn't be to difficult to do.

Sony Rootkit again (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935695)

Talk about progress: Now the Sony Rootkit isn't limited to your PC. Makes me think twice about getting a PS3 personally... I don't want to have to rely on AdBlock Plus for my video games.

Re:Sony Rootkit again (1)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936025)

Yes, because putting ads in a game is exactly the same as compromising a system at the root level and leaving it exposed to god knows what.

Re:Sony Rootkit again (1)

ekhben (628371) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936173)

That would depend on your perspective. If you consider the motivation behind both actions, they're pretty similar: a thorough disdain for the customer and for the consequences of the action.

And hey, let's face it, there were no real consequences to the root kit fiasco ($7.50 per claimant in a class action is peanuts for a crime which carries a maximum penalty of $100,000 per violation).

Re:Sony Rootkit again (1)

causality (777677) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936191)

Yes, because putting ads in a game is exactly the same as compromising a system at the root level and leaving it exposed to god knows what.

I acknowledge that what you said there is accurate though I question its purpose. I just think the AC's point that "you as a potential customer should know that a Sony product has shown itself to be untrustworthy in these two different ways" is significantly more important than your point that "these two different ways were more different than the GP may have indicated."

Those different ways actually have quite a bit in common. Remember that the rootkit was a DRM device. So, these are two different expressions of the same mentality because each gives some benefit to a company at the expense of the already-paying customer. In light of that, are not the precise methods academic? Either tells me all that I need to know for my monetary decision-making.

Boycott (2, Insightful)

Kell Bengal (711123) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935705)

Don't like the way they're treating you as a consumer? Don't buy their products - simple as that. Use the only real power you have as a passive recipient of their products: the power to stop being one. No one is forcing you to buy Super Testosterone Massacre III if you don't want to. You just have to want being treated fairly more than the latest shiny bauble. There are bigger things in life.

Re:Boycott (5, Insightful)

Nyall (646782) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935755)

Read the summary?
How do you boycott something when the advertisements show up several months after you've bought it?

Re:Boycott (4, Informative)

Kell Bengal (711123) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935761)

But not buying their subsequent products, presumably? I refused to buy a single EMI product after I got burned by their disc copy protection - it wouldn't play on my PC, and they have not had a cent from me since.

Re:Boycott (4, Informative)

neokushan (932374) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935923)

Never underestimate the power of complaining. Not buying their product doesn't tell them much. In all likelihood, they'll employ some asshat sales analyst who will come to the conclusion that sales are dropping because the products aren't marketed in the right way, or that it is because of the recession or some other stupid excuse, rather than work out that the product is actually perfectly fine and that the company itself is to blame for its shortcomings due to pissing off consumers previously.

Even if they do work it out, it'll take them 10 years to do it and by then the problem will be everywhere, so ingrained in that rather than fix it, they'll just re-brand themselves and target a newer, younger audience that's more tolerant of their bullshit.

If just 2% of the people reading this article sent off a quick email to SCEE Liverpool explaining their distaste at the new advertising, there's a good chance that Sony will at least have a meeting with some executives to decide if the revenue it generates is worth the lost customers and, with a bit of luck, they'll accidentally pass a motion to remove it.

But no matter what, always remember to stay positive, cynicism never got anyone anywhere!

Re:Boycott (5, Funny)

spun (1352) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936209)

But no matter what, always remember to stay positive, cynicism never got anyone anywhere!

That's a pretty cynical view of cynicism.

Re:Boycott (1)

Nyall (646782) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935987)

I was presuming a boycott would involve the current product at hand. Its a tad hard to boycott Sony Entertainment if you own a PS3.

Re:Boycott (5, Interesting)

StreetStealth (980200) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935989)

I think you might just have a case here for the ultimate retroactive boycott: the credit card issuer chargeback.

They sold you a game. Then they added a double-dip, "secondary monetization" to what you already paid for. I'd call up MasterCard and see if they've got your back on this.

Honestly, the studio or publisher that did this needs to get hit hard. Ads are for freeloaders, not for paying customers.

PLEASE MOD PARENT UP (3, Insightful)

causality (777677) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936069)

I think you might just have a case here for the ultimate retroactive boycott: the credit card issuer chargeback.

They sold you a game. Then they added a double-dip, "secondary monetization" to what you already paid for. I'd call up MasterCard and see if they've got your back on this.

Honestly, the studio or publisher that did this needs to get hit hard. Ads are for freeloaders, not for paying customers.

From what I understand, chargebacks are a pain in the ass for retailers. They're also one of the few scenarios where the deck is stacked in the favor of you the customer. That's because the merchant really wants to be able to take $MAJOR_CARD but you as the customer can choose among several major credit cards. A small percentage of affected people doing this really would get some attention, methinks.

Re:PLEASE MOD PARENT UP (1)

gmezero (4448) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936103)

Yeah, but I believe you have a limited time to request a chargeback don't you?

Re:PLEASE MOD PARENT UP (1)

causality (777677) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936249)

Yeah, but I believe you have a limited time to request a chargeback don't you?

Two questions:

Does the delayed bait-and-switch nature of this incident mitigate any time limits for a chargeback? I'd imagine this is a question for a lawyer.

Do a multitude of good-faith chargebacks need to be successful in order to cause the expenditure of a lot of time, effort, and expense that would lead to a lot of pressure applied in the direction of avoiding a reoccurrence?

Re:Boycott (1)

glitch23 (557124) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936275)

Honestly, the studio or publisher that did this needs to get hit hard. Ads are for freeloaders, not for paying customers.

I assume your logic here only applies to games? The reason I ask is because that logic doesn't apply to television where everyone has to pay (for cable at least, not broadcast) and they still get commercials with the reason from the cable companies of course being that without the commercials we would have to pay even more. Of course, pay even more on top of base amount for premium channels and you finally can get away from commercials from what I last heard. I don't pay for the premium channels so maybe that has changed somewhat.

Re:Boycott (1)

grim-one (1312413) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936403)

I think you may run into trouble with your 'chargeback' idea. Technically your credit card only bought funds for your PSN wallet. You got your value there and I think the credit card company will be disinterested in what happens after that.

Re:Boycott (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28936299)

I totally agree with this. SONY (rootkit), Intuit (Turbo Tax fiasco) and Microsoft (too many examples to list) are three companies that went on my own personal forever-boycotted shitlist.

It's a tiny dent against their coffers -- but it IS a dent. And a lot of little dents surely add up.

Re:Boycott (1)

dwhitaker (1500855) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935871)

But boycotting does work if somebody hasn't bought the product yet. I was considering buying this game soon but will not be doing so now. This was the deciding factor for me (but may not be for everyone - it isn't like they are going through and substantively changing content).

I did play the demo and noticed advertisements in it which I was fine with (since I did not pay for the content); I had assumed they would be gone once I payed them money though...

Re:Boycott (1)

trawg (308495) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935875)

This is the exact same shit the music and movie industries are trying to pull. It's not really new in software; just check the average EULA from any major vendor - they're trying to make it so you're not buying the game, you're just buying a license to use it temporarily.

I guess at some point it'll come to a head when someone finally cracks the shits and takes someone to court about it. The sooner the better, I reckon.

Re:Boycott (2, Informative)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936041)

What do you mean "trying to make it"? EULA's have been that way for well over a decade now.

Sadly I doubt 99% of people will bother raising a stink over this and Sony will rake in the money. As I said earlier, the money they make from whoring the game will be more than they'll lose from upset customers.

Just another reason to add to the reasons I refuse to buy Sony anything.

Re:Boycott (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28936443)

It's Sony. They're the company that have stated that they plan to monetize every little aspect of their games. They want to sell you $2 virtual shoes to use in Home. Never mind that PlayStation Home is completely worthless or that no one, anywhere, would notice the shoes an avatar that ONLY appears in Home is wearing - they still think people will shell out $2 for them.

They decided to sell special items in their online games. Want the best gun? Shell out $5 for it.

Want a costume for your Sackboy in LittleBigPlanet? That's $2. Want a custom sticker to use in levels? That's $4.

Anyone buying from Sony deserves what they get. It's no secret Sony wants to nickel and dime their customers. If you buy from Sony, period, you should have expected this behavior and have no right to complain.

It's not like Sony is only just starting to pull this crap now.

Re:Boycott (1)

angelus errare (984448) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935781)

Ah, but the problem with this instance is that consumers aren't being warned that installing this new DLC will add, uh, ads to their game. I guess people know now and most are unwilling to upgrade.

Re:Boycott (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935803)

Super Testosterone Massacre III

Is that a game or a product that they're advertising in wipeout HD?!? EITHER WAY I NEED IT!!!

Re:Boycott (1)

jd2112 (1535857) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935901)

Boycotts rarely work. First, if every slashdotter were to boycott a large company, the resulting loss of sales would probably ammount to little more than a rounding error. There aren't enough geeks to make a difference and most non-geeks just don't care. Second, the mentality of many content provider companies is that any lost sale for any reason = piracy. Not because the content sucks, not because the poorly designed DRM causes computers to spontaneously explode,(Sony, anyone) it's because of piracy. (If their product sold 100 million copies and there are 6 Billion people on earth there must be 5.9 Billion pirates out there...)

Re:Boycott (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936049)

As someone else pointed out, you can't boycott something if it has no advertising when you paid $15 or $20 for it and months later they bring ads to it. You've already paid the money. All you can do is stop playing the game, which is kind of silly when you've already paid for and own it. All you can really do is contact the companies behind the game and tell them how upset you are and that you'll re-consider ever purchasing their games in the future.

I can almost tolerate in-game advertising in certain situations. However, if I have PAID for a game, I don't want advertisements on my loading screens and I don't want any kind of interstitial. Are they really so hard up that they need your money AND advertising instead of charging for it OR making it ad-sponsored only?

I'd been thinking of buying Wipeout and the new expansion to it. I've changed my mind.

Blocking via the source? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Cowar (1608865) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935731)

I would be interested if there would be a way to block these ads by looking at traffic and blocking the source at the router. I haven't seen anyone attempt that with the xbox360, but everyone assumed that was par for the course. It would be really interesting to analyze this, and the youtube video should really spark outrage at the ads. I mean the ads are actually degrading performance, they're removing value from the game, and they're very very intrusive. Not everyone has hours and hours and hours to play, and if i can only play for an hour and an add saps 10 seconds every few minutes from my play time, I'd be royally miffed.

Alas, not everyone feels the outrage at having advertising shoved down their throats. I know that newspaper and tv REQUIRE ads to continue to be made, but you can get 77 issues of the WSJ for 70 bucks. That's a little more than a ps3 or xbox game, but the game isn't something completely new every day.

Bottom line, if you use ads, you should either seriously discount your product (newspaper) or provide it for free (broadcast TV), but charging users full price for a game or a DL game and then reaping the benefits of the ads that reduce play time from a session and degrade performance (longer load time = performance degredation) is not right.

Real bottom line: If you want more money from your game, make a better game, its on the console so you can't bitch about piracy, so do better or lose my business. If you previously got my business and then wish to make money off of providing ads to me in a game that there were previously no ads, I will be asking for a refund and encouraging all of my friends to do the same. If you didn't tell me that there would be ads or allow me to decline the ads, expect a general backlash. (I hope)

Lost sale (1, Funny)

Endymion (12816) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935733)

Well, there goes one more sale.

I was about to buy that - the demo looks so good on my new HD monitor. But then they pull this crap...

Wipeout HD = cheap to buy... (2, Insightful)

ihaveamo (989662) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935777)

... and for a downloadable PSN game, Wipeout HD is surpurb. 1080p at 60fps on a widescreen tv. Closest thing to a rollercoaster - race. It really feels like a more expensive title.. So..... Would you rather see ads, or pay more upfront?. The game moves so fast, ads a fine by me if the cost stays down! .. I wouldn't like 'em in a RTS or FPS methinks.

Re:Wipeout HD = cheap to buy... (5, Insightful)

Nikkos (544004) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935807)

Bullshit. I bought the game for $20 without ads. What the hell gives them the right to change the game content of something I've already bought and paid for (a year ago!) Next they'll be changing the music or lyrics of song I bought.

GP has not bought or played this. (2, Insightful)

StreetStealth (980200) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935933)

If the game were free, sure, ads would be completely permissible. But your standard $9.99 game on the PSN should be supported by the purchase price, and as you point out, Wipeout HD sells for double the usual amount, making it a premium PSN title. There is absolutely no excuse to "re-monetize" something like this, especially in such an intrusive way as increasing the load time for levels by an appreciable amount of time.

I think this may be one of those few cases where a credit card issuer chargeback is in order. They sold you something, then messed it up. Enough people do this, and you can be sure Sony will write a proscription of sleeper-ads into their new studio license agreement.

Re:GP has not bought or played this. (2, Insightful)

T Murphy (1054674) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936317)

I don't anticipate it would work but if there are few advertisers so far maybe complain to those companies instead? Pitting companies against each other is often a good way to get someone to back down in a beneficial way. The game company can't monetize on the advertisements if word spreads that it just gets you negative PR. If anyone has heard of such a strategy working it'd be interesting to hear but I'm not too hopeful. I don't have a PS3 but I'll be affected if this idea spreads.

Re:Wipeout HD = cheap to buy... (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935975)

Next they'll be changing the music or lyrics of song I bought.

Licensed. BTW, rent's past-due Mr. Nikkos! If you don't lease a new white album by this time tomorrow, I'll start the repossession papers!

Re:Wipeout HD = cheap to buy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28936475)

Hey, I totally agree with you, but what gives them the right to change it? Well, because they made it.

It's patching. Patching is a good thing, but it necessarily changes content. Usually this is assumed to be bug fixes and new features, not ads, but there's really nothing that say they can't change the content of the game (and if there was, then patching would be unheard of (which would not necessarily be a bad thing)).

To the point of the article: this is total shit, and I'm glad I didn't buy the game. As many others have stated, you buy the game so you don't have to put up with this. They should allow players to get a partial or full refund (with potential for a return of the product) due to this change. But of course they won't. =(

Re:Wipeout HD = cheap to buy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935905)

No ads.
I don't have a ps3, only xbox where downloadable games costs around 16$(converted from my local currency) which is a bit much but kinda ok, but the standard price these days for any full xbox 360 game is 110$ which is way too much. I am not willing to look at more ads and not pay that much for games so I have not bought any new games for 2 years, only second hand. :)
I know they would like to kill the second hand market but then I wouldn't be buying any games at all.

Re:Wipeout HD = cheap to buy... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935929)

So..... Would you rather see ads, or pay more upfront?.

The advertisements were added well after the game was purchased.

How would you like to buy a new car and have sleazy stickers (that can't be removed) appear on it next time you walk out to your driveway? Hell, you got your car for $14,000... but if those stickers didn't start appearing you would have had to pay $16,000 (which was never an option in the first place).

It's a pretty shitty deal all the way around. The fact that someone is actually playing devils advocate for something like this is, quite frankly, more disturbing than the fact this has happened.

I bet you also love the virus scanner that always pops up and you can't run anything unless you click the buy now option. You're a stupid fucking dickface.

Somebody chop his fucking head off, along with the people in this Double Fusion company, along with any company that puts shit like that in their pay games.

Please do not use your (or your parents) hard (or not so hard) earned money to promote this kind of bullshit.

Re:Wipeout HD = cheap to buy... (1)

Taelatus (971105) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936001)

Nah. They'll charge whatever we're willing to pay. Sure they can claim development costs and overhead but in the end, business is business. Studies have shown (do a google search) that the younger generation plays games and surfs the web more than they watch TV. It's only natural for advertisers to want their ad seen by as many eyeballs as possible. I for one can't wait until the zombie army I'm fighting gets new uniforms...in the form of Snuggies.

Making money on my dime? (5, Insightful)

fremean (1189177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935801)

Here in the internet backwater country we call Australia we get a limited amount of bandwidth usage quota.

Every time the PS3/game downloads advertisements it uses my limited quota...

If I run out of quota I either have to buy more, or suffer 64kbit shaping...

And I consider myself lucky, some ISP's charge 18 cents per meg when you go over your quota without the ability to buy more.

I don't mind ads in web pages, or even sensible advertising in online gaming because they constantly require money to upkeep - but a game I've PAID FOR download and am playing OFFLINE doesn't cost the provider a damn cent!

Ask for your money back .... (2, Insightful)

GabriellaKat (748072) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935811)

Contact SONY and ask for your money back. And if that fails, well, guess you could try to go SUE happy and start a class action lawsuit? After all, you bought the game without ads and no clue they were going to do this.

Re:Ask for your money back .... (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936093)

you could try to go SUE happy and start a class action lawsuit? After all, you bought the game without ads and no clue they were going to do this.

I would bet that buried somewhere in the murky depths of Sony's EULA, there's a clause that lets them screw you this particular way - somewhere between the one where you promise your newborn as a sacrifice, and the one where you pledge to donate all your organs to the Sony executive board in case of death.

You slashlosers amuse me. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935819)

I love the choice of words in the summary: the ads were "snuck in," as if the developers were accountable to a bunch of junior college fuck-ups on slashdot, and would somehow have to answer to the basement virgins if they placed advertising with a little more fanfare. Face facts fatties: you don't matter. Nobody snuck anything in, they just went over your heads because they're not interested in your input.
It also amuses me that somebody tagged the article "boycott." Your empty threats don't scare anyone. Hint: It's not a boycott if you were going to pirate it anyway. And I think it's well known at this point that the average slashdork has neither the willpower nor integrity to participate in any sort of collective action that requires any self-sacrifice.
Such human garbage here- a bunch of fat, goateed cubicle shit. You guys are some of the vilest hypocrites gathered on the internet.

Re:You slashlosers amuse me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935931)

Wait? You can pirate sony online store games/dlc now? link us up buddy - I don't mind ads in something I haven't paid for :)

Re:You slashlosers amuse me. (-1, Troll)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936061)

It's a PS3 downloadable title you fuckwit. Good luck pirating that.

Get back under your bridge fucknut.

Redirect the DNS (2, Interesting)

binaryspiral (784263) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935873)

I neither own this game or the console its on - but I'm assuming the game downloads its ad content from a single source.

Block it on your DNS or redirect it to photos (or videos) you'd like to see during the loading of a level.

Re:Redirect the DNS (3, Interesting)

fremean (1189177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935947)

It would be sweet if anyone who was getting the ads could upload a tcpdump log somewhere :)

Re:Redirect the DNS (2, Informative)

Kenja (541830) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936425)

Clearly you didn't look into the situation. The adds are showing up even when off line. They are not being loaded over the net but are built into the patch.

Interesting turn of events (1)

PhunkySchtuff (208108) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935895)

This is a rather interesting turn of events.

wipEout was one of the first major games to feature in-game advertising of real-world products. The ads were very well targeted at the game's demographic, specifically Red Bull ads claiming that it improves reaction time.

These ads didn't adversely impact on the gameplay, in fact I'd say they enhanced it, as they added an element of realism to the game. Products that were aimed at the people playing the game, advertised on trackside billboards, just like they would be in real life.

Also, the idea of paying for ads isn't anything new. How many ads do you see on Pay TV? Ads at the beginning of movies?

Where this latest scheme seems to fall down is that ads unrelated to the target market are being inserted before you play a game, and they are increasing the load time of the levels in order to show the ad for a longer period of time. This is unacceptable.

I'm all for ads in games, especially if it keeps the price down (WipeoutHD isn't exactly and expensive game to begin with) but if it adversely impacts on the gameplay - if it takes longer to load a level, or I get popups that obscure important gameplay, I'm completely against it.

In summary, have ads on billboards or on the sides of vehicles, have them on loading screens, but don't download streaming media to use up my precious bandwidth, or don't increase the time the loading screens are displayed just to fit an ad in there. Also, if the game is subsidised by advertising, reduce the sticker price that I have to pay.

Re:Interesting turn of events (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28936143)

wipEout was one of the first major games to feature in-game advertising of real-world products

No, Tapper and Pole Position were.

Only a few ways ... (2, Interesting)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935909)

or is there anything that can be done to hinder companies from adding advertisements retroactively, without the customer's prior knowledge?

1. Pass another law.

2. Let the market decide.

3. Boil the bastards in oil.

Re:Only a few ways ... (1)

Nyall (646782) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936095)

Is a class action lawsuit #2 or #3 ?

Re:Only a few ways ... (1)

jd2112 (1535857) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936155)

Pass a law to let the market decide to boil the bastards in oil.

Lucas/Spielberg style "Special Editions" coming... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28935927)

I just had a vision of the George Lucas / Steven Spielberg style special editions of games coming in the future. If I don't like the steam version of Half Life 1, I can pop in my original CD and play the game the way it was. This is the same way that I cam watch the original version of Star Wars, or The Goonies. With newer games, you won't have this option any longer, on console or PC.

And it doubles the loading time (4, Informative)

Sarusa (104047) | more than 5 years ago | (#28935973)

According to ShackNews, this also increases the between race load times from 12 seconds to 20 seconds.

Now that's 'meeting advertiser demand,' thanks Sony.

http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/59821

Re:And it doubles the loading time (2, Informative)

effigiate (1057610) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936213)

The load time seems dependent upon the length of the ad. The progress bar matches up to around 75% and then the ad infused run slows down only to complete just as the ad finishes.

Creativity (3, Insightful)

corychristison (951993) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936047)

So, what's next? Can we look forward to fighting the Kool-Aid Man and zombified Mars bars in Uncharted

If they were to start advertising like that, I think it would be welcome in a sense. I don't like the idea of a fullscreen ad taking up my screen when the game is loading (although it's not as though I have anything better to look at while loading).

If companies got really creative and were to add in special characters that pop in from time to time it could be more entertaining and feel less like they were cramming advertising down my retinas.

Picture a giant Sour-Patch man skateboarding as a competitor in a Tony Hawk Game. Or a Coca-Cola bottle skiing down the hill in Winter Sports 2.

Entertainment and advertising all combined into one may be fun and enjoyable. And may upset less people here at Slashdot.

Greed knows no limits (3, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936107)

To be simple, greed knows no limits except those limits imposed by morality and by law. And in the case of modern business, there is no such thing as "morality" and so law is the only limit recognized by business. To be clear, unless laws are present to prevent it, 12 year olds will make your clothes and shoes in factories as can be demonstrated even today. Without laws, there would be billboards covering ever scene and location imaginable. I have no doubt that business would have no problem playing ads in your dreams if it were technically possible, and of course, legal.

There is nothing more important to modern business than money. Nothing. Not quality. Not human life. Not nature or the environment. All of that has been lost. It would be nice if that sort of morality could return, but I just can't imagine how. The story of how it was all lost would be an interesting story to hear. I just know we had some morality at some point and it was lost... I feel the loss.

Re:Greed knows no limits (0, Offtopic)

causality (777677) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936439)

To be simple, greed knows no limits except those limits imposed by morality and by law. And in the case of modern business, there is no such thing as "morality" and so law is the only limit recognized by business. To be clear, unless laws are present to prevent it, 12 year olds will make your clothes and shoes in factories as can be demonstrated even today. Without laws, there would be billboards covering ever scene and location imaginable. I have no doubt that business would have no problem playing ads in your dreams if it were technically possible, and of course, legal.

There is nothing more important to modern business than money. Nothing. Not quality. Not human life. Not nature or the environment. All of that has been lost. It would be nice if that sort of morality could return, but I just can't imagine how. The story of how it was all lost would be an interesting story to hear. I just know we had some morality at some point and it was lost... I feel the loss.

Mods,

This isn't off-topic, so I say to you: have the courage to post a reply and explain why you believe parent is wrong. The inability to do that is what causes the need to censor. The inability could be because you know he's right and want to shoot the messenger. It may also be that you disagree and yet you sense the weakness of your position. Both are cowardly. This post about greed and business can't be off-topic for this discussion. That's obvious unless you think this sort of bait-and-switch advertising is an act of altruism that we are discussing. If you believe that, I really want to see you try to make the case for it. Good luck with that.

I hope no one thinks I'm bothered by a misuse of the Slashdot system. Yeah, that's annoying but trivial. Rather, I prefer not to see even anonymous people like this moderator make such an unflattering statement about themselves. There's a million ways the individual can do that; the moderation system is just easier than most.

Easy, don't buy, don't play, unplug (1)

relaxinparadise (943965) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936109)

"Can we look forward to fighting the Kool-Aid Man and zombified Mars bars in Uncharted, or is there anything that can be done to hinder companies from adding advertisements retroactively, without the customer's prior knowledge?" Most importantly, stop buying products from people that have a track record of running over consumer rights. Providing them resources from your purchases will do nothing to stop behavior you disapprove of. Don't play the game if the ads bother you. To stop any more ad's coming in, I would think it would be easy enough to unplug the PS3 from the network. Or if you can't do any of the above, buy the game, play it, get the ads, and whine like a used bitch.

doublefusion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28936133)

IGA, Double Fusion, and Massive (microsoft) all exist to place ads on and in game content.

I work from one of them, and i have good friends who work or have worked in the other ones. and im not saying witch.

They have been placing ads in games since the 90's, and more specifically the above mentioned company's have been actively placing ads in ALL current gen consoles. That "brought to you by sprint" ad inside the Wii version of madden is no accident, and many of these games are being coded with ad serving tech built in (not just static ads)...

In fact the above companies are working very hard to get as many online/live game ad impressions as possible... because they dont have to sell NEW inventory inside forthcomming games to make all their moeny (they can resell dynamic ads in current/old games).

these arent new, and theyll only get worse. The economics of it are stright foward, UBIsoft, EA, activision... all of them develop games and are giving proposals that reduce their R&D budgets with initial "sponsering"... A good (static) game will have 10 bifferent ad buys into it, each one can pull 100k to a million depending on placement and views. Considering the developers have a lot of games that dont do well, and cost them a ton... the ads help bring in revenue to pay for games that would otherwise cost them, and helps subsidize their AAA titles.

Nin is the least friendly to ad placements, and currently has no dynamic ad delivery capability
Sony is in between, IGA having extensive reach into their marketshare
And MS has their inhouse firm MASSIVE, which is SUPER friednly to ad buys, MS having devloped an entire ad network directly tailored for online ad delivery (Live). Live was NOT built for gamers... it was built for ads and cash flow.

Expect more ads to come, particuarly now when the above companies, and console makers are scrambling to bring in any revnue they can from advertisers who are spending less than before (who still view in game advertising as an unproven market).

This may be the most "brazen" currently noticed ingame ad, but it is NO WHERE NEAR the first, youll find that billboards in racing games and stadiums, etc... are already populated with real ad products (which i promise you were the result of ad buys). The iphone already has 3 substantially backed ad serving competitors delivering ingame/inapp advertising ("free" apps... no, not really).

and yes, im an AC.... srry, but one should fear the slashmob

Re:doublefusion (2, Insightful)

assassinator42 (844848) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936589)

Why do you work for such a firm? No better option? I think I'd feel rather guilty in such a position.
And I don't recall Live originally having ads. In fact, I don't remember any ads at all on the Xbox 1.
The most "brazen" example of in-game advertising I've seen is 1 vs. 100, but that's understandable as the game is "free" (besides the Live subscription). Although it remains to be seen if they will charge for the full version. Seeing as how they seem to be making the game more buggy as they release more builds, I have a feeling it may be in beta for a while yet. I'm also a bit confused and quite a bit annoyed by their advertising plan: run the same ads over and over again each half hour, and only add more ads from the same companies.;

hosts.txt (4, Insightful)

Nimey (114278) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936161)

Any players notice traffic to ad servers? Post the hostnames and people can just map them to 127.0.0.1.

Money... (1)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936181)

With money for the goal, how else did you expect to be treated? You will endure it just as the millions who endure television commercials, spam, and the rest of the world of business we've come to live in immersion with.

Imagine your world without money. The utopia you might imagine surely can't have anything to do with such a destructive force.

Kneejerk reaction (1, Insightful)

kyjl (965702) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936353)

./'s reaction has 'kneejerk' all over it. Fox News kneejerk.

Games have had in-game advertisements for YEARS and nothing bad has ever come from it. Some as blatant as in WipEout HD. Some games even paid the companies to advertise in the games - Guitar Hero and Rock Band jog your memory a bit?

Hell, if anything WipEout is a fantastic example. Ever since the first one came out on the PSX it was inundated with in-game advertisements for stuff like Red Bull and other Psygnosis games. This was before the internet was put on console games, now it's no different (only now the advertisements can change - OH NO THE WORLD'S GONNA END WE GOTTA PROTEST SONY BOYCOTT BOYCOTT BOYCOTT).

Calm the fuck down everyone.

All the more reason (1)

spyder-implee (864295) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936383)

For me to not feel guilty pirating games.

Sick of ads? (1)

SetupWeasel (54062) | more than 5 years ago | (#28936503)

Hop aboard the Wii bandwagon. They may have friend codes, but they don't throw ads on your dashboards and in your games. Wii online is a very clean service. You will never be swamped with ads about "Double Pits to Chesty" on the Wii menu.

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