For a while now, the Lab has been considering the potential impact of in-game advertising on the gaming industry itself, looking for precedents in the history of television and other media. One of the things we have been expecting to happen is the emergence of serialized or episodic gaming, where the games come out in smaller but regularly scheduled installments instead of the boxed five-CD lumps. The advantages for the publishers and the advertisers are many. Episodic gaming would mean higher flexibility to the publisher, a lower risk of commitment to the consumer, a potentially longer shelf life for the game, and a production schedule more friendly to advertisers' demands.
Well, the episodic gaming that has been explored in the past is expected to come to life with the release of the new Xbox. Thomas Hawk writes: "In an interview with MTV earlier this month, Peter Moore, one of the chief architects of the new XBOX 360 talked about some of the new features and programs that will be available for the new console. In the interview, he announces the introduction of an XBOX 360 marketplace, where gamers will be "able to sell machinima or character avatars on the service", as well as the introduction of episodic gaming.