EA tried to put adverts in UFC 4; immediately regrets decision
Electronic Arts – one of the largest video game companies in the world – quietly turned in-game advertising on for its new title UFC 4.
To say these adverts were obtrusive, would be an understatement. The adverts are literal commercials that flash during the middle of the fight.
Fans were not happy. Within a few hours, more than 90,000 people had made complaints on reddit – which prompted the story to go to the front page of the community platform. Fans also publicly chided EA games using social media.
That led to one of the quickest U-Turns in video game history, and the following statement from EA’s community team:
Earlier this week, the team turned on ad placements in EA SPORTS UFC 4 that appeared during the “Replay” moments in gameplay. This type of advertising inventory is not new to the UFC franchise, though we have typically reserved displaying ads to specific main menu tiles or Octagon logo placement. It is abundantly clear from your feedback that integrating ads into the Replay and overlay experience is not welcome.
The advertisements have been disabled by the team and we apologize for any disruption to gameplay that players may have experienced. We realize that this should have been communicated with players ahead of time and that’s on us.
We want to make sure our players have the best possible experience playing EA SPORTS UFC 4, so ad integration in the Replay and overlay experience will not be reappearing in the future. Thank you for your continued feedback on EA SPORTS UFC 4.
It marks one of the quickest responses from a big video games firm like EA to their fans. However, it is still worth nothing that EA still does run adverts in its other sports games, including its NBA 2K series.
Esquire now has a newsletter – sign up to get it sent straight to your inbox.