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Sony Files Patents for Ads that Pauses Games - News

by William D'Angelo , posted on 25 May 2012 / 13,016 Views

Sony has filed for a patent that will pause video games as you are playing them, in order to play an ad. The patent was invented by Gary M. Zalewski and was assigned to Sony Computer Entertainment America back in July. Once the ad is over gameplay will resume. There will be a warning telling players that the game is about to pause and when the game is about to continue.

The abstract text reads: "A method for use in advertising includes initiating playing of interactive content, suspending playing go the interactive content, displaying an advertisement, and resuming playing of the interactive content. A computer program product includes a medium embodying a computer program for causing a computer to perform these operations, and a system for use in advertising includes display and a processing system configured to perform these operations."

Figure 1 from the patent, shown below, shows how the patent works.

Sony Patent for In Game Ads Figure 1


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54 Comments
dr3b (on 25 May 2012)

The only time I would accept this is the game I was playing was free, if I had to pay for the game.... well I wouldn't buy it.

  • +22
thetonestarr dr3b (on 26 May 2012)

There's ONE other case in which I'd accept it - if the ad's rewind means I can use the "hey, here comes an ad" warning to experiment with things that I wouldn't do otherwise, then if it was a bad idea, have it rewind for me.

  • 0
ChaosAngelZero dr3b (on 27 May 2012)

@thetonestarr: You can already do that in some games whose saves work like savestates (like Deus Ex: Human Revolution).

@dr3b: I wouldn' put up with that even if the game was free. In fact it'd be even worse, I mean I wouldn't even have to think "but yeah I already paid for this and I can't return it and ask for my money back, now I have to beat it" since it's free.

  • 0
Kresnik (on 25 May 2012)

Sony have kept the PS3 completely ad-free its whole life. I find it much more likely that they're patenting this for something like SOE games, keeping them F2P.

  • +8
OnlineGamesLand (on 25 May 2012)

I totally agree.... if the game is free it is ok to see ads. But if you pay for a game and it pauses to show you ads, it will be disaster...

  • +6
josrocket (on 25 May 2012)

This will not be on retail titles. More than likely its for something like games in PSHome or games like http://www.cinemablend.com/games/sony-announces-free-play-shooter-bullet-run-42776.html

  • +6
TC_Squared (on 26 May 2012)

As angry as this made me upon first reading, now that I think about it, there is most likely more to it than this article is stating. After all, no game company--R* for example--would approve of this occurring during game-play of their major titles--GTAV for example. It would ruin the entertainment value of their product. This probably only applies to Sony production titles that we will be given access to free of cash...the advertisement is what pays for it.

  • +5
Moonhero (on 25 May 2012)

Poop

  • +5
duckypwns Moonhero (on 28 May 2012)

This deserves to be the top comment. Sums up the entire situation.

  • +1
hackles (on 25 May 2012)

That's just wrong. No really.

  • +5
gumby_trucker (on 26 May 2012)

there is only one instance in a game where I wouldn't completely object to this, and that is during loading - not a second more!

  • +4

then they would just claim it had to load, or they would put extra loading times in the game not really needed with some effort.

  • 0
Superman4 (on 25 May 2012)

This doesn't say that Sony will be sing it. It will entitle them to royalties for other companies that may however.

  • +4
:VN: Superman4 (on 26 May 2012)

Precisely! Like so many other registered patents this doesn´t mean Sony is going to use it. But it will surely ensure that if someone want´s to use it will have to pass through Sony.

  • +3
:VN: Superman4 (on 26 May 2012)

Precisely! Like so many other registered patents this doesn´t mean Sony is going to use it. But it will surely ensure that if someone want´s to use it will have to pass through Sony.

  • 0
Gilgamesh (on 25 May 2012)

Didn't someone say this was from 2006?

  • +4
UnknownFact (on 26 May 2012)

This is for MMORPGs, not for the non MMORPG PS3 or PSV games.

  • +3
duckypwns (on 25 May 2012)

Extremely... EXTREMELY short term decision on Sony's part, that only the most die hard Sony fans will passively accept, or even more abominably, appreciate.

  • +3
VGKing duckypwns (on 26 May 2012)

Only the most die hard Sony haters would think this would EVER be implemented in any game besides free to play ones.

  • -1
duckypwns duckypwns (on 28 May 2012)

They patented it for a reason, and you are trusting Sony's discretion in utilizing this.

You are trusting a company.

I'm not.

Sorry but I have the upper hand.

  • +2
duckypwns duckypwns (on 28 May 2012)

It's also pretty interesting how, I'm supposedly a "die hard Sony hater", all because I don't like advertisements and don't necessarily trust or respect Sony's discretion in utilizing this patent, while you're obviously just a "fair and neutral" person, who obviously isn't a die hard Sony fan at all, when you are the one trusting and defending Sony in this choice of theirs.

It's like you don't want me to attribute their choices to them. Why is Sony the only company out there that gets a free pass on everything they do and they aren't held responsible for their actions?

It's sad how you view me as a "Sony hater", when in actuality if any company out there made this patent, I would be criticizing that company. But no, SONY IS THE ONE WHO MADE THE PATENT! So guess who gets the criticism!

  • +2
Araknie (on 28 May 2012)

I see this a near a goodbye for Sony.

  • +2
Lafiel (on 27 May 2012)

this could possibly be for the rumored cloud gaming deal (if they decide to make it free but ad financed), but well Sony probably has tens of thousends of patents it never really used and this could very well be one of those

  • +2
Bladeforce (on 27 May 2012)

If Sony did do this then I hate to say it but it will be bye bye to SOny from the videogame arena

  • +2
binary solo (on 26 May 2012)

F2P games I'm more than willing to pay for my cheap arsed-ness by having to endure the occasional add. One every 15 minutes for about 5 seconds would be OK by me if it's a high quality game.

To those who think Sony have done themselves a mortal blow: Sony is trying to patent this so they can sell the licence to do in game ad pause to anyone / everyone. Sony knows they are not onto a winner here unless lots of people start using it. If no one uses it then Sony aren't going to use it in a big way either.

  • +2
Hibern81 (on 01 June 2012)

Like everyone has stated, I would have no problem with this as long as the game was free to play. Let's hope they keep it kosher, otherwise there might not be a Playstation 5!

  • +1
Etanclan4life (on 28 May 2012)

Free or not its not ok to pause a persons game to see an add, that is possibly the absolute worst idea ive ever heard.

  • +1
SaberSaurus (on 26 May 2012)

This patent was never even used...

  • +1
usrevenge (on 02 June 2012)

yawn its a patent by a huge company, it means nothing. they just don't want competition using an idea they had. people speculate too much

  • 0
Monteblanco (on 27 May 2012)

I am not sure this patent will ever hold, as it is an obvious port of TV ads into game media. Still, I hope Sony intends to implement it in a free to play game. Otherwise, this will bring them a strong backfire.

  • 0
sethnintendo (on 25 May 2012)

I'm sure most people would like their game to pause for commercial breaks...

  • 0
Last_Dream (on 26 May 2012)

The in-ads game become less and less acceptable from day to day.... I think....

  • -2
Tammi (on 26 May 2012)

How irritating!

  • -2
riders42 (on 25 May 2012)

wow worst idea ever

  • -2
VGKing (on 25 May 2012)

Something like this would be a great alternative to an item mall in F2P games.

  • -2
gjsdfweg (on 25 May 2012)
  • -13
gjsdfweg (on 25 May 2012)
  • -13
gjsdfweg (on 25 May 2012)
  • -14
JazzB1987 (on 25 May 2012)
  • -16
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