NBA 2K21 publisher 2K has been criticized by players for adding unskippable full-screen adverts into the premium title a month after launch.
As reported by Stevivor, the adverts are attached to a pre-game video that auto-plays on load screens, and have reportedly made their way into both the console and PC versions of the game. One of the ads (pictured below) is for the Oculus Quest 2, and runs for around 15 seconds.
Players on the NBA2K subreddit have almost universally slammed the adverts, with one calling both the ads and 2K “absolutely pathetic” while another suggested “there should be zero ads in a game that comes out yearly and costs $60.”
It’s a similar move to the one pulled by EA earlier this year, with the publisher adding intrusive full-screen advertisements into UFC 4 after the game had launched.
EA eventually performed a u-turn and removed the ads after players called out the contentious design choice, explaining it’s “abundantly clear from your feedback that integrating ads into the Replay and overlay experience is not welcome.”
It’ll be interesting to see if player pressure ultimately prompts 2K into reviewing its own decision, or whether the ads in NBA 2K21 are here to stay.