It looks like Microsoft will embed ads during its online play. Now, I'll admit, I don't own a 360, and I only play one at friends houses....and only Halo 3. I own a PS3, and I'm hella happy with it. One big reason I went with the PS3 is because its online play is free, and 360 charges $50/year to play, which is balls. I never understood the need to pay one company for something that the two other companies are giving up for free. I would think that with this increased ad revenue, Microsoft could afford to lessen, or even remove the fees. Sadly, I doubt it, and it will be interesting to see what the hardcore gamers will do. Will they ignore it because they're they're douchey-gamers who will do anything that green button tells them, and then call me a sonyfag because I own a different gaming console then them? Or will they flip the holy-hell out and start causing all manner of mischief? I hope it's the latter....there's nothing I can't stand quite as much as when already-rich companies start charging people to see advertisements. It's tacky.
It reminds me of my days as a Galaxy Cinemas manager. We ran a 7-screen theatre in a medium-market of about 20,000 people. For the first year of operation, the only pre-movie ads were the 35mm slides for local business like the "Dock Lunch" or something similar. Then the company started to get a little bigger and began to draw pre-trailer ads from Scotia Bank and Coke. It was a huge source of revenue for the young company, and I (naively) expected ticket prices to fall a little....after all, we're getting a huge chuck of change from annoying (and loud) ads (that also run on television....which I always found to be a bit of a waste of cash on the part of the advertisers, who are paying big bucks to be seen in a theatre). I remember asking the guy who was then (maybe he still is for all I know, that's why I'm not using his name) the corporate Director of Operations if we'll pass on the savings to the customers....because as we all know, the profit in a movie theatre comes from concession, not from box office -- if the customer has more money in his pocket from not spending at box, he can enjoy more concessions! The director chuckled at my naivety, "No, we're not going to do that". Inside his head, I know he was thinking "...you stupid little sonyfag". Of course, our ticket prices were increased. Just as I was leaving the company, a new practice was being put into place company-wide: playing 20-30 minute "pre-shows" that are mostly ads for concession products, interspersed with inane tidbits of mindless celebrity trivia....as if we really gave a shit that Shia LeBeouf studied business or something before making the heroic decision to star in giant robot movies where some slut humps a motorcycle while a smaller robot humps her leg. Our world, their war, indeed.
Pictured: The son of Indiana Jones. The human champion to thwart off the Decepticons. The man whose dick is basically hilariously flopping out. Hero.
So now the company, which owns all Famous Players, Galaxy Cinemas, and Cineplex Odeon in Canada, has about 40 minutes of ads before the trailers even fucking start (which are really ads for other movies, many of which are really ads for the products in those movies). Ticket prices at my local Galaxy Cinemas are $9.95. The average combo at concession costs around $13-16. Can you imagine having to take an entire family to see Ice Age, buy them all some concessions, and then have to WATCH MORE FUCKING COMMERCIALS!?!
Getting consumers to pay to watch ads. We must be a gullible people if we take this the way we do.
The opinions expressed on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of Skeptic North, any of my past/present/future employers, or any of my past/present/future academic colleagues. These words are entirely my own.