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3:29pm on Sunday, 24th August, 2014:



I was planning to mock an advertisement for Manchester Metropolitan University I saw on CivFanatics earlier today, but I closed the window by accident. No problem, just reload the page and wait for the ad to show again.

Well, the ad didn't show again — not in the 15 minutes I continually reloaded the page, anyway. There were a few ads for phones, one for the New York Times, one trying to raise money for Syrian refugees, one for mortgages and the rest for games. Well, I assume this one was for a game:

Looks legit...

They weren't just for any games, though, they were free games. OK, well two weren't (Lego Fever and a Farmville knock-off), but the rest were:

Of these, Rift showed most by far: maybe half of all the ads were for Rift.

Two of the games had more than one ad for them:

There were another two for Bleach, both advertising it as being in live open beta rather than being free (or dead open beta). One of them was of a different crazy-looking guy and the other was for a different woman with boobs bigger than her head.

There was also one as that was both live open beta and free:

The thing is, if every game is free, "free" rather loses its impact. Indeed, it starts to look more like "suspect": you know they're going to try get money out of you somehow, but how?

Hmm, a game with gameplay that's all about avoiding paying... Yes, that could work.

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Copyright © 2014 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).