EA extends Massive in-game ad deal

Benefiting NFS, NBA, NHL, Burnout.

EA has extended its in-game advertising partnership with Microsoft subsidiary Massive Inc. in a deal which will affect the majority of its 360 and PC titles for two years.

Dynamic ads will be incorporated into the next two editions of Madden NFL, NBA Live, NASCAR and NHL franchises. The deals covering Need For Speed and Burnout Paradise will continue.

"EA strongly believes that dynamic in-game advertising is an important growth area for our business, and is one of many opportunities we are pursuing in growing the advertising market," said Kathy Vrabeck, boss of the Casual label at EA.

In-game advertising is an avenue publishers pursue to offset the cost of developing large titles.

Sony recently opened PS3 advertising to key players Double Fusion, IGA and AdSense for Games, which will each be allowed strike deals with game publishers.

The growth of in-game advertising in videogames has been widely analysed, with observers such as AdSense predicting it will become a multi-billion dollar industry by 2010.

EA will be using advertising as a key revenue in its upcoming title Battlefield Heroes, which is designed to run on minimal PC specifications.

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