You may have heard the news that the mega popular Flappy Bird will soon be back in the app store for all of our guilty, addicting pleasure. Creator Dong Nguyen is finally allowing Flappy Bird to live again for thousands to cherish and obsess over. Back in February, a cryptic tweet from Nguyen simply said “I can’t take this anymore” and the next day, the game was gone. But now that it’s almost back, how does Flappy Bird affect the way developers create successful games from here on out?
Instead of flashy graphics and complex stories, The Fuse Joplin says that after Flappy Bird, publishers are more concerned about mass appeal. It’s a new era of gaming: the easily digestible, the game played while in the coffee line or doctor’s waiting room. Smartphones and tablets are changing the way we use games, pushing content out to a wider audience than those on the couch. Developers wanting in on the trend have been trying to emulate Flappy Bird’s success by keeping gameplay simple yet still adding that addictive quality – a high score to beat, complete with a leaderboard to compare your rankings to everyone else.
Bloomberg says new studies show that Flappy Bird, a game where a pixelated bird flies through a network of pipes, is as much of a sensory overload as a first-person shooter game. Add in the easy accessibility of Flappy Bird (instead of $60 a pop for first person shooters), and Bloomberg predicts mobile games will account for almost 30% of all video game revenue (over just 10% last year), and games like Call of Duty, Halo, and the new Titanfall will only see about 40% of the revenue (down from 60%).
“The mobile audience is humongous, and there are so many developers out there,” says David Helgason of Unity Technologies. “Flappy Bird can be over in 10 seconds. It’s that kind of risk-taking that makes it an exciting space to be in.”
There’s no way to know how long Flappy Bird will stay available this time – our guess is that it will be up for good, now that the hype has died down. There’s also no word if Nyugen, the former taxi-cab programmer, is working on a Flappy Bird successor, or if he’s content to live a quiet life far away from the hysteria his game created. Needless to say, we’re grateful it’s back, and for the addicting entertainment of flying a small, flapping bird through an endless pipe puzzle.
i think i'm getting arthritis in my thumb from playing flappy bird too muich
— Flappy Bird Problems (@FlappyBlRDProb) February 25, 2014
Image via VR Zone