Gearbox defends in-game ad deal

"Judge us from the result."

Gearbox has defended its recent in-game advertising deal by asking critics not to rubbish it "based on fears that may not turn out to be true".

In a post on the studio's blog, developer boss Randy Pitchford explained that the agreement would help improve authenticity in games and increase revenue to make them better. And he assured us that his team hates exploitative advertising as much as you.

"So, please don't judge us by the fact that some folks out there do it wrong and with exploitation as their key driving factor. This is not our motivation or intent. Don't judge us based on fears that may not turn out to be true," said Pitchford.

"Instead, judge us from the result. If you see in-game ads for some stupid product that has nothing to do with the context in which it occurs and actually detracts from the experience, then you can feel justified in bashing the developer, publisher, or advertiser that made that decision."

Pitchford went on to give an example of an old Philips factory that appears in Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway. By being able to talk to the manufacturer, Gearbox has been able to faithfully recreate the old logo and use it to increase the authenticity of its game.

There are some fresh Hell's Highway screenshots to illustrate this over on the Gearbox website.

Pitchford also talked about marketing promotion to help widen the audience, which would mean better additional content post-launch.

So rather than point the finger, he wants you to come up with examples where in-game advertising has helped improve the final product, as well as examples of where it has damaged it.

What do you think, Eurogamer reader?

Examples for bad inclusions so far include "everything in Transformers", while Back to the Future was highlighted as having good adverts.

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About the author

Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer  |  Clert

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.


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