Madden 12 News Post

Is EA going away from in-game advertising? According to Edge, they might be.

"In-game advertising has not delivered the expected levels of revenue, with microtransactions proving far more lucrative for EA.

The publisher’s general manager of free-to-play, Ben Cousins, told us: “We actually aren’t getting much from ad revenue at all. The in-game advertising business hasn’t grown as fast as people expected it to.”

He points to the success enjoyed by Zynga, the publisher that has enjoyed huge revenues from microtransactions in its Facebook games, as evidence of his claim. “If you think about how fast the virtual goods business has grown in the last year or so, it’s been much quicker and become a much more reliable source of revenue."

Game: Madden NFL 12Reader Score: 6.5/10 - Vote Now
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Member Comments
# 1 superbus @ 12/20/10 07:08 PM
So basically, 4% of the market - the whales - are running things. This is depressing, because EA has shown they are not above making it so that you cannot compete unless you microtransact. Try doing Ultimate Team in any game that has it without paying. Just try it.

The difference here is that Zynga's games are free to play. Yes, they're a terrible company that gets by solely on copying the work of other people and pretending it's theirs - "copy what they do until you get their numbers" - but you can at least play the game for free. EA's going with a microtransaction model on games that are $60 to start with, and need to be replaced yearly. No one's thinking this is a bad thing?

Oh, I'm sorry. You're all working on your overpowered Ultimate Teams. My bad.
# 2 johnnyskoods @ 12/20/10 07:36 PM
Haven't bought one thing. I was thinking of playing the 2010 season madden moments but when I saw that you had to literally purchase every scenario, I just let out a big, "COME ON, MAN!"
# 3 Shinyhubcaps @ 12/20/10 08:24 PM
I find it weird that this article (especially the snippet) makes it sound like microtransactions and advertising are mutually exclusive. In reality, a company could do both, but it would make their games seem infinitely annoying. People will still buy Madden in troves, though.

I've paid for DLC in the past, but I definitely don't have enough money to do so anymore. If you're going to intentionally withhold stuff from me to get more revenue, I'll just blast your game like crazy and hope that I can prevent other people from giving the company their $60 in addition to the $5-10 I spend on adding levels or modes.
# 4 moylan1234 @ 12/20/10 08:38 PM
maybe we can get some more creative fake ads like the Triple Play series used to have
# 5 Ronstr @ 12/20/10 08:55 PM
Maybe they can put them together. 25 cent Snickers bar in Madden 12?
# 6 Cusefan @ 12/20/10 09:02 PM
Originally Posted by grunt
Microtransaction in Madden is like going to the mall but having to pay $60 just to walk through the doors.
yea that analogy really does not work

I am of the Opinion that DLC is a good thing. Its not like you have to pay anything extra in any EA Sports game to play it, They basically charge for Cheats and Ultimate team. I really do wish they would start creating DLC that added to the game like different broadcast packages or Stadium packages. Hell if I were in Charge of EA i would have teams that created DLC like stadium packages or Changes to the game that could not be added until the following year.

That would basically allow EA to cash in on their current game but make the following years game better by having more content.
# 7 PVarck31 @ 12/20/10 11:04 PM
Originally Posted by moylan
maybe we can get some more creative fake ads like the Triple Play series used to have
Who can forget Lobster Cola....Finally the great taste of Lobster, in a soft drink.

I would be remiss if I didn't plug "Chork".
# 8 NYJin2009tm @ 12/20/10 11:11 PM
Originally Posted by 31
Who can forget Lobster Cola....Finally the great taste of Lobster, in a soft drink.

I would be remiss if I didn't plug "Chork".
I remember that! That was awesome and so funny!
# 9 ryan36 @ 12/20/10 11:46 PM
"The world's first standing room only airline..."

I remember there was a cheat code where you could hear the ads, they were so damn funny. I remember video games so much more fondly then...I think just cause I was younger...I loved LOVED triple play 99
# 10 oneamongthefence @ 12/21/10 12:34 AM
Well you can compete in MUT without spending a dime. It just takes more time and is way more rewarding. However clever use of advertising ingame adds to it. Since its so prevalent in the real world anyway. And you can get the Madden Moments without paying for those also. As long as they make an alternative to paying for stuff I'm not too worried about it. As long as it doesn't give people who choose to buy stuff an advantage of the rest of the people its ok.
# 11 adembroski @ 12/21/10 01:18 AM
Why are people so against companies attempting to make money?
# 12 canes21 @ 12/21/10 01:44 AM
Originally Posted by adembroski
Why are people so against companies attempting to make money?
I don't think people are against them making money. Its just frustrating to get charged an extra $10 for something that could have probably been in the game from the start. Sort of like when you have to buy a code that unlocks content already on the disk. If it is on the disk, why do we have to pay more money on top of the $60 to get it?

This is sort of off topic, but I wish EA would make their football games 2 disk sets. I don't know if its true with Madden, but the NCAA devs always say they are lacking disk space. So why not go with two disks? One with art, commentary, etc. that is installed on to your hard drive, while the other disk has all the features, modes, animations, teams, etc. The only reason I bring this up in here is because of the money relation. I know it would cost more to print off two CDs for every sale, but it would generate more sales more than likely if the game was two disks and had a lot more content.
# 13 permanent1 @ 12/21/10 02:09 AM
I am not against anyone making money that is just capitalism,BUT do they really need to make more money i mean it is not like they are not already making money hand over fist on madden they sell what 4-5 million copies atleast every year at $60 a pop,that is what around 240 million(in no way i am saying those numbers are correct) or so,no biggie really i guess just seems a little excessive.
# 14 jdsmoooth @ 12/21/10 02:35 AM
Consumers proved that they would pay for DLC long before Zynga and others really caught on... If anyone has played or remembers Everquest and Ultima Online? People were earning items or money that were available in the game and selling them as a true cash commodity on Ebay. We're not talking chump change here either, some items or accounts could go for over $1K. What I'm saying is that some consumers have shown that they are willing to pay extra for game add ons that enhance their experience. It doesn't mean that many, if not most, players won't already be happy with their game as is.

What this does mean is that large companies will have to listen very closely to the pulse of their core buyers if they intend to make money from in game purchases. I think that EA has shown that they will support a game post launch with title updates. People purchasing DLC, should in theory, give EA the ability to financially support a title for a longer period of time. Meaning more free title updates and game tweaks and enhancements for everyone.
# 15 Dazraz @ 12/21/10 02:36 AM
There are 2 issues to look at here.

Firstly DLC. There is no doubt the option to expand on a game with DLC can help give a game extended longevity. Downloads such as additional courses on PGA for example. The question is where is the line drawn. At what point do developers take the idea too far. Are we heading to a point where games are released in their bare bone states with key modes & options requiring separate purchases. Imagine if you bought Madden & then had to pay for a download to play Franchise Mode!

As for in game advertising. I have no idea what sort of revenue these ads bring in but there is an argument that these ads do add to an authentic broadcast feel to certain titles.
# 16 Gordy748 @ 12/21/10 06:05 AM
DLC... Well I've spent 2 years buying EA's cheats for offline franchise. I won't again, mainly because it's starting to detract from what fun I have playing Madden. In my current franchise I haven't bothered activating the World Class Staff or Star PLayer, for example. If I draft a lemon, then that's them apples, and it makes team building more challenging (read, more fun).

Still, it's a source of revenue for EA. I guess the Madden moments are interesting. Would I be prapred to pay not only for the greatest moments of 2010, but the greatest moments of all-time? Or access to every Superbowl in the modern era? Or to be able to start a franchise in, say, 1982 and see if I could stop the Bears? Or pay for additional uniforms? Or to buy certain teams so you can pitch the 72 Dolphins against the 85 Bears? Actually, yes I would.

The question is whether they could get the license for past teams and players. Sadly I doubt they could, but if the DLC is going to be relevant and priced right, then for sure I'd be happy to pay.

The other question is whether they'd charge for features that currently come for free. And if they did, whether they'd drop their retail price. I don't mind paying $30 for a one-season only Madden 11 Basic then adding 10 for offline franchise, but if they start at 60 then expect dollars on top then I'll stay away. Chances are many others would too.

I'm surprised about EA's attitude to in-game ads, though not surprised they're not earning any money from it. Advertising revenue is based on charging for space (be it billboard, mag pages or tv slots) for a limited time. But the in-game advertising in Madden, indeed all games, is fixed. Why? Why not tell Snickers that their Chompetition sponsorship will last 5 franchise years, then after that they need to pay extra, if not then Coke, or whoever, can take up the sponsorship. Same goes for banners in the stadium. Equally stadium sponsorship. Why the fictional brands? Get companies to pay to get their names in the game! Make the Extra Point more interesting by sponsoring that. For PLay Now games, allow companies to pay for their logos in, say, August, then allow them to either pay up for September of get another company in. It would actually help keep Madden fresher for a little bit longer.

And stop advertising Madden in-game. Why do I get the Madden NFL blimp flying over my stadium? Wouldn't Reebok be happy to pay for that bit?

Seriously. EA's in-game advertising strategy is failing because it's the wrong strategy, not because in-game advertising doesn't work.
# 17 jmurphy31 @ 12/21/10 06:18 AM
I for one dont mind(and I completely understand) EA wanting to to make additional revenue off of MTs just as other games do. But, as others pointed out before, it shouldnt be something that used to be in the game (not saying this is what it will be). MUT and Franchise cheats are fine, but if they start making portions of fanchise, commentary tracks, or roster updates cost money than you will see a ton of negative feedback from people.
# 18 carnalnirvana @ 12/21/10 06:27 AM
i got no beef with EA making money, but they just dont get it... put out a good product and you will sell millions of copies......but they rather release stuff that upses the users and then nickel-dime the few who bought the product........

i am a gaming nut, they could get my money but you gotta be creative with dlc or additions
# 19 seriousluboy83 @ 12/21/10 09:29 AM
Originally Posted by adembroski
Why are people so against companies attempting to make money?
Like they say "the best things in life are free"
# 20 stp2081 @ 12/21/10 09:37 AM
I actually like diverse in-game ads. They aren't too intrusive to me, EA has done a good job of keeping them from getting in the way, and real NFL broadcasts are full of advertisements and commercials, and I think it makes the experience more authentic.

However, as far as the microtransactions concept goes, the Facebook analogy is flawed. Facebook doesn't cost $59.99 to sign up, and you can enjoy many, many features for free. The idea that Madden microtransactions/DLC might (to the extent they haven't already) encompass things that were once already paid for as part of the initial purchase price of the game, or cause a diversion of apparently already severely limited EA attention/resources to things like MUT, is enough to make me want to puke, and switch to another sport's game where EA doesn't possess anything close to an exclusive license.

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