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Sony patent would interrupt gameplay to display ad

by Andrew Yoon, shacknews.com, May 25, 2012 12:30PM PDT

Sony has filed a patent that would introduce in-game ads in a whole new way. First discovered by an eagle-eyed NeoGAF member, the application was posted last year. The patent describes an ad delivery service that would actually interrupt gameplay to display an advertisement. The process would show a warning message indicating that gameplay would be suspended. Once the game is paused, it would show an advertisement. Once finished, the game would rewind "at least a portion of the interactive content," so that you can undo that horrible gaming blunder caused by the abrupt interruption of your gameplay session.

The publisher has been experimenting with a number of unique in-game advertising partnerships. Most recently, it offered MotorStorm RC as a free download to Vita owners, thanks to a partnership with Scion. However, its most criticized ad campaign involved Wipeout HD, where game loads were purposefully delayed to show video ads for State Farm.

As with any patent, there's no guarantee that Sony will ever implement this idea in a real world product. Given the potential fan backlash, it doesn't seem like a worthwhile endeavor to pursue. "The day Sony puts ads up while Im in game is the day ill never buy a Sony console again," one commenter noted on Eurogamer. However, there certainly is an appeal to a completely ad-supported free-to-play game...