Discord users will start seeing ads this week

  • Discord users will start seeing ads for “Sponsored Quests” from this week, according to a report.
  • Developers pay Discord to host Sponsored Quests, which offer in-game rewards to players that spread gameplay of certain games.
  • While not as gratuitous as other ads in gaming, Discord’s CEO hopes that one day “every game” will have a Quest on the platform.

Users on social media platform Discord should expect to see sponsored and promoted content offered to them as early as this week. Luckily though, it seems the platform will start by dipping its toes with less intrusive ads around “Sponsored Quests.”

According to a blog post from Discord’s SVP of Product Peter Sellis, “Sponsored Quests” is a new feature where users on PC can earn in-game rewards for getting their friends to watch streams of them playing games through Discord. It seems to be a way for the company to promote its streaming features, and as per Ars Technica, will start being rolled out this week.

“Quests are a way for players to discover games and earn rewards for playing them on Discord. We started experimenting with them over the last year, and millions of you opted in and completed them,” writes Sellis. They explain that Discord is expanding Quests so that the feature can attract more players to more indie games and their developers.

One example of a Quest includes the “May the 4th” Fortnite Star Wars tie-in quest, where players could get a brand new weapon by screen sharing Fortnite on PC to a friend in a Discord server.

“Quests will show up tastefully in Discord where you can opt-in to stream your game to friends and win rewards for playing,” they add.

“Some players will be made aware that a Quest is available, while others will discover it as their friends accept and embark on the Quest.”

But while Discord is saying all the right things like “helping more developers” and “tasteful placement”, what they’re really after is money. According to a Wall Street Journal report from the weekend, Discord was showing a slideshow to game developers that read “We’ll get you in front of players. And those players will get you into their friend groups.”

The Journal adds that Discord will be looking to target Quests to users depending on age, geographic location and gameplay habits. So if you play Elden Ring a lot, you will probably start seeing Quests ads related to other Souls-like games from smaller developers.

As for future plans, Discord’s CEO told Bloomberg last month that he company hopes that eventually “every game will offer Quests on Discord” which of course actually means “every game will pay Discord to offer Quests.”

While not as in-your-face as the latest ads on Reddit have been, ones that masquerade as posts from users that pop up randomly in your feed, Discord is seeing some controversy over Quests because the company used to be vocally anti-ads.

Sponsored Quests will at least get more people playing games, whether indie or not and will offer interesting in-game items for players who complete them. As far as ads go, these aren’t the most disgusting way they can be integrated into gaming. We’re looking at you, Samsung.

As an April Fool’s Joke, Discord posted that it launched loot boxes on the platform, another controversial means of making money from players.

[Image – Photo by Alexander Shatov on Unsplash]


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