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Post-launch WipeOut HD ads a scary look at possible future
Gaming
Written by Daniel   
Friday, 07 August 2009 11:42

  Sony adds, and then quickly yanks, in-game advertising in WipeOut HD that artificially increased loading times. The company may have learned its lesson, but gamers were given a powerful look at how much digital content can change after purchase.

By Ben Kuchera | Last updated August 5, 2009 7:27 PM CT

Sony had quite a bit of bad PR on its hands when an update added advertising to WipeOut HD on the PS3, with both the gaming press and those playing the game complaining bitterly about the addition.

Sony quickly yanked the offending advertisement. "The ads have been removed to further investigate the situation and ensure that any in-game advertising does not affect the gameplay experience," the company said in a statement. Why were these ads so offensive, and is this something we're going to be seeing more of?

Part of the problem is the fact that the ads weren't present when the game shipped, meaning that the amount of advertising included in the game changed over time. While many gamers are tolerant of in-game advertising, others refuse to buy titles with invasive ads. In this case, the product they bought was updated at a later date to include the sort of content they're trying to avoid, and there is neither a way to opt out of the advertising nor to get a refund from Sony. The company has your money, and there's nothing stopping it from adding any kind of advertising it wants.

Outside of bad press and the outrage of gamers, that is.  [ARS Technica...]    [Comments...]
 
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