May 26, 2022

Like me, you have likely picked up a gaming app or two over the course of the pandemic. With less things to do outside of the home and more time spent isolated indoors, we’ve developed more time in our days to spend messing around on our phones. 

For me, right at the beginning of the pandemic, I picked up a small obsession with the game Disney Magic Kingdoms. I would spend a few hours a day playing this game and, shamefully, spent a little bit of real world money on it too.

I was really into this game, and a few others. There was a woodturning app I was really into; it was super relaxing and a stress reliever to the pandemic – until the endless ads hit.

Some of these games have a ridiculous amount of ads. A lot of them will give you an ad before and after every turn you take. Sometimes the “gameplay” will take approximately 20 seconds and the ad will be 30 seconds. 

One of the silliest parts about these ads to me, is that after downloading a number of games because they look interesting based on the ads I see for them in other games, I noticed that it’s this same circle of games all advertising themselves to each other! How do these games make money when they seem to be in a Ponzi scheme of advertisement?

It’s completely understandable to see an ad or two in a free game. That’s how the game stays free, of course. But when users…

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