As we go about our day we’re constantly bombarded with advertisements and now even our games have ads. Electronic Arts (EA) has announced that its infamous city management game, SimCity will be the home of a few Nissan advertisements. Specifically a Nissan Leaf charging station — plastered with Nissan branding — that can be placed in your city that will “provide happiness to the Sims that use it and a onetime wave of happiness to the nearby businesses.” The Nissan Leaf DLC is free and available on the Origin store or through the in-game billboard.
This isn’t the first time advertising has made its way into games. The game James Pond 2 had built-in advertisements for Penguin brand biscuits in 1991. At one point in 2008 even Barrack Obama’s 2008 campaign had made it into Burnout: Paradise. Pizza Hut also targeted gamers in the online game Everquest II, where players could order Pizza Hut pizza without leaving the game itself.
We’ve been bombarded with so many ads, some have resorted to installing ad blockers to hide annoying ads on the Internet. EA has had numerous problems with the current SimCity franchise, server issues, always-on problems, and more. The building itself isn’t that bad, it consumes no power, water or workers while producing no garbage or sewage, an environmentalist’s wet-dream. It’s pretty much a magical building that needs nothing while making everyone happy.
Is this really the right time to be selling eyeballs to corporations by using magical buildings with superpowers?