We have TiVO to skip ads from the TV. We have pop-up blockers to skip ads from Internet. So, marketing guys think to push to us ads in games! Come on guys! Leave our games free ads! We pay for them, remember?

“Due to the soaring costs of developing video games, the tremendous reach of video games, extended exposure to ads when playing video games, and integration with on-line commerce, advergaming will be a common fixture in video games,” said David Wanetick, Managing Director of The Wall Street Transcript.

While consumers actively try to block advertising with tools such as spam filters, pop-up blockers, the mute button and digital video recorders, there are sound reasons for consumers’ receptivity to advergaming. One reason is that the appearance of corporate logos makes video games appear more realistic. For instance, gamers who drive through virtual towns in which signs for Coca-Cola and Nike appear have a more realistic experience that they would if the signs merely advertised Soda and Shoes.

Another driver of advergaming is its tight integration with commerce. For example, some advergaming companies have arranged agreements with pizza chains whereby gamers can simply click on a banner to have their favorite pizza delivered to them without interrupting game play.

Mr. Wanetick said, “Advergaming is clearly on a rapid growth trajectory as it is projected to generate $4 billion in revenues by the end of 2008. We are delighted to provide two forums in which advergaming will be discussed by the nation’s foremost practitioners.”

Video games are captivating consumers’ attention and capturing their wallets. The average time spent viewing
advertising with a video title is 110 hours versus 20 hours for football. Also, video games retail for between $40 and $60 and video games are played for an average of six months. Video game-related revenues are positioned to continue growing at torrential rates. For instance:

• Video games generated $13.9 billion in revenues in 2003, significantly more than the $9.2 billion generated by movie studios.
• Some video games skyrocket right out of the starting blocks: Halo 2 sold more than $100 million on its first day of release.
• Casual games have grown from almost nothing in 2002, to well over $600 million in 2004 in the U.S. alone. Industry experts anticipate that the market will reach over $2 billion by 2008.
• The worldwide market for mobile games is expected to reach $11.2 billion by 2010, up from $2.6 billion in 2005.
• However, the anticipation of a new generation of hardware systems such as the Xbox 360 and Sony’s Playstation 3 threaten to slow sales of video games. For instance, NPD Group reported that sales of video games at U.S. retailers declined 18% in November of 2005 compared to November of 2004.
• Advergaming revenue is estimated to grow from $200 million in 2004 to $1 billion by 2008.

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