Apparently Sony decided to put Ads into the loading screen of WipeoutHD.
Ads in Games are not necessarily a bad thing. They can help support an otherwise free service (like the multiplayer part of a game – makes sense unless it’s decentralized) or even fund a free game. I don’t care about replacing fake ads with real ads, like they did in Enemy Territory : Quake Wars or Battlefield 2142.
Putting them into the loading screen and delaying the start of the game so the ad can finish playing – that’s intrusive, annoying and there better be a good reason for this. One such reason might be that the game is completely free. I’d love to see free ad-supported games (where you can choose to pay to make the ads go away – and without regional constraints please). It would make demos obsolete and probably combat piracy way more effectively than shady DRM schemes do. But in a game that has already been paid for? That’s just plain evil.
The the whole rootkit thing already made a point about how Sony regards its customers. And it looks like every time they find a new way to annoy you, it takes a huge public outcry to make them take it back. You’d think that by now they have found out that this is hurting their brand, but apparently they don’t care. We’re lucky they don’t know about that “cooking the frog”-thing yet – let’s hope they continue being clumsy.
Edit: Ads have been removed (duh).