Sony Patent Pauses Games for Advertising

A new Sony patent will allow the company to pause your gameplay while it serves up advertising. Delightful. In the illustration submitted with the patent, cars are racing against other cars and some louder speakers or warning lights are show. The gameplay pauses and then a soda ad appears. After the ad is served the game resumes.

Companies have tried subtle and not-so-subtle ways of advertising in games but this might be the most irritating way of handling it that we have seen. On the other hand advertiser-sponsored games could give players access to AAA titles without having to pay the premium prices usually associated with them.

How Sony would use this type of patent (beyond irritating players) we do not know, but we'll keep you posted on it.

You can check out the illustration that was submitted with the patent at Game Informer (PDF).

Source: NeoGAF by way of Game Informer

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  1. Janice says:

    I think the worst nightmare I could have is becoming real. I've read a book called 9.99 francs and it was mentioned there that this is happening, that during the calls there are ads that appear and interrupt the discussion. I would hate if this happened during my Jewel Quest 2 game.

  2. eston says:

    I wish I could believe that this would actually lower the price of games, but somehow I don't believe that will be the case. And I remember back when they first started toying with the idea of using ads in place of loading screens, it was annoying but at least it didn't interrupt the game.

  3. Prof_Sarcastic says:

    Then, implement it alongside always-on internet requiremetns, so that I can be disconnected from my game and not even know it yet!


  4. locopuyo says:

    How is this even patentable? It isn’t a unique idea or anything worthy of a patent.

  5. Sleaker says:

    other than the obvious reasons to not do this:

    don't games already do this to advertise their own product? by this extension , since it has technically already been done, doesn't it make this patent completely invalid and dumb?

  6. Wolvenmoon says:

    Well, this sounds like a good idea to alert gamers to products they will never want to buy, ever.

  7. wii_charles says:

    On the bright side, it's good when playing video games to rest your hands now and again, so you've got a minute to do a few finger stretches.

  8. PHOENIXZERO says:

    Going by the rumored crappy hardware included in both the next XBox and PS4 they're going a cheap route and abandoning the loss leader approach in favor of making money on the hardware starting on day one. Neither console will be a huge leap above the current generation. We're likely to see $300 hardware (being a bit generous here) being sold at $400 if the rumored hardware is legit and things don't change as Epic seems to want them to.

    I generally don't jump into new generations of consoles until at least a year after release but it might be longer this time around than it took me to get into this one (didn't get a current gen console until late 2009), especially if most of the multi-platform games are still going to look and run better on my year old PC.


    This isn't going to make it into anything but perhaps"freemium" games.

  9. jedidethfreak says:

    This is probably the only way for them to make the PS4 a huge step beyond the PS3.  Their current financial situation doesn't bode well for Sony, and this is where they need to make a choice – make a conservative console, or find dumb ways to make a buck.

    It figures they'd choose the latter.  That being said, Sony fanboys will hail this as some sort of great innovation of Sony's, along side triggers, analog, cameras and motion controls.

  10. Andrew Eisen says:

    Dear Sony,

    Implement this advertising system only if you want people to stop playing your games.


    Love and kisses,

    Andrew Eisen

  11. GrimCW says:

    like BF2142 did? bugs (and crap support) aside, one of the biggest issues people had for some reason was the in game adverts…


  12. Briggs says:

    Which is exactly how it should be. They try to shoehorn this into a title and don't reduce the price and gamers will not buy it. Result: They stop using this idiotic idea.

    Not all patented ideas are /good/ ideas.

  13. tallimar says:

    "advertiser-sponsored games could give players access to AAA titles without having to pay the premium prices"

    and you think they'll just magically decide to lower prices because they have other companies paying for ad space/time?  im betting the price will stay the same AND the first game that uses this will flop worse than a dead fish.

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