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Enhancing the Effectiveness of In-Game Advertising (23 Dec 2005)
It's also important for designers to recognize that this isn't simply a gratuitous money-making proposition; if done correctly, it can actually enhance the entertainment value of a game. We live in a branded world – enough so that many of us define ourselves by the brands we consume. (If you've ever purchased a shirt with a corporate logo on it, I'm talking to you.) We also use brands to frame the world around us. For example: many people believe that the presence of at least one major restaurant chain is what defines a “real” town. Given that, wouldn't it be funny if, when a SimCity community grew to 5,000 people, a little Starbucks or McDonald's automatically appeared in downtown? When I imagine little cars lining up at the drive-through, it really makes me smile, and I bet that other players would appreciate it, too.
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