Thomcult: It isn't a question of if anymore, but when. In-game advertising is almost without a doubt going to play a major role in the financing of videogame development in the near future. What then are the implications on the structure of play in a world where our virtual experiences are brought to us by third party sponsors?
This discussion is an important one, for those both for and against. Even as we speak advertisers are finding ways to integrate sponsored content into games. It is only by keeping up with their work, and not letting it happen behind the scenes whilst both sides of the debate go at loggerheads, that it is possible to monitor and feedback into it. It is important to drop the cliche of innapropriatly placed billboards in FPS games and look at the issues seriously. Ensuring that advertising works and is beneficial for both the gaming and development community should be everyone's top priority.