Yahoo! is a big fish in the casual online game business, attracting millions of unique visitors each week. Many of the games they offer are free to play online, but downloadable versions have cost money in the past. However, Yahoo! announced today that it will begin offering hundreds of games as free downloads backed by revenue from in-game advertising. From the Yahoo! press release:
Yahoo! (Nasdaq:YHOO) today announced that Yahoo! Games will offer ad-supported downloadable games from the top casual games publishers. With more than 400 ad-supported games available to users by the end of the year, Yahoo! Games solidifies its commitment to providing the Internet’s best gaming experience, and is creating new opportunities for advertisers to reach an engaged audience. The announcement brings the industry’s largest collection of ad-supported games to the biggest gaming audience on the web and reinforces Yahoo! Games’ overall strategy to be the most comprehensive distribution point for games online.