I’m well aware that ‘free’ games need ad revenue to remain viable. However, I believe there’s a contract between adverts and ‘the advertised to’ that ads cannot force engagement – you can put an ad anywhere, but you can’t force people to engage with them.
I’ve noticed a ‘surfing’ ad for (what I believe was) an insurance company with no skip button and no timer. The user was forced to ‘play’ the minigame. I understand that an insurance company knows nothing about app development or games, and it was the last I saw of it.
However, the equitable and benevolent company Gameloft has an ad for a film, which will be unnamed as not to benefit from the publicity. I know ads use a white background and a white (x) button to trick people into thinking they can’t leave an ad, but I swear this particular ad had no exit button.
I was forced to play along for 2 – 3 levels before a (x) showed up. I know they switch the (x) around so customers don’t get used to it, sometimes putting a (repeat) button so customers accidentally play the ad twice. However, it wasn’t there. Again, a movie company may not know how ads work on mobile, and the dev that made the game is just padding their ‘user engagement’ numbers, but I believe a line has to be drawn somewhere.