A few years back, it seemed in-game advertising was going to ruin everything. That...hasn't really happened, with EA saying that the business has been eclipsed by one more lucrative for publishers.
"We actually aren't getting much from ad revenue at all", EA's Ben Cousins tells Edge. "The in-game advertising business hasn't grown as fast as people expected it to."
Using Cousin's experience with Battlefield Heroes as an example, he says "We hedged our bets. We thought we'd do in-game advertising and virtual goods sales, and one of those took off really fast and the other hasn't really taken off at all."
The one that took off being virtual goods sales.
There are of course exceptions to this - advertising has always, and will always work in sports games, as we're conditioned to seeing it via television broadcasts - but hopefully the fact it hasn't taken off in normal games (well, most games) means publishers are spooked off the practice.
Or can at least find more tasteful ways of implementing it.