Oculus developer pulls out of Facebook in-headset VR ads trial

Resolution Games, the first developer signed up to test Facebook’s new plan for in-headset VR ads, has pulled its game Blaston out of the trial.

The move follows a huge backlash over the idea of ads appearing in games played using Facebook’s Oculus Quest VR headset. Blaston was down as the first game to test the idea, with others due in the “coming weeks”.

Now, an update on the game’s official Twitter account has stated that Blaston “isn’t the best fit for this type of advertising test”. The trial has now been cancelled.

Blaston review bombed on Oculus’ own store and Steam, and owners asking for refunds.

Previous assurances from Facebook on how it would serve ads and handle user data privacy did nothing to calm a fanbase already deeply suspicious of Facebook’s ownership of Oculus, and its plans for the future.

Facebook had previously said it would not use conversation data from apps like Messenger to target in-headset advertising, nor pass on movement data or recording to ad targeting algorithms.

However, the in-headset ad system would gain access to details on your Facebook profile (which you need to log-in to Oculus), plus your Oculus store purchase history. The two, of course, are linked – and deleting your Facebook account also deletes your Oculus purchases.

Facebook is yet to say which other Oculus games might receive in-headset advertising in the future, but Resolution Games has said it may still temporarily try the idea in its free game Bait!