Google to launch 'AdSense for Games'

In May, 2006, Microsoft bought Massive, an in-game advertising company. At the beginning of 2007, Google bought AdSpace, an in-game advertising company. See the pattern?

It should, therefore, come as no surprise to learn that Google is expanding into the world of video games. Bernie Stolar, Google’s Dean of Games, is adamant that Google won’t be publishing its own games or building its own console, but that they do have plans for a new system, called “AdSense for Games”.

For Google, in-game advertising was always on the cards. On its acquisition of AdScape the search engine giant said, “Over the past few years, the video game experience has become richer and more interactive. We think this rich environment is a perfect medium to deliver relevant, targeted advertising that ultimately benefits the user, the video game publisher and the advertiser.”

“AdSense for Games” will enable advertisers to purchase ad space within games and game publishers can integrate the system to monetize their products. Text and video ad formats will be on offer. Initially the system will only be available on web-based games but there are plans to include PC and console games in the future.

It will be interesting to see how Google manages the relevancy of displayed ads and whether they are environment, or player, oriented.