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The rise and fall of “Flappy Bird”

By ELI BECHT
Staff Writer

As many smart phone owners know, there was a game called Flappy Bird that was available to iPhone and Android users. It is no longer available, however, which may come as a shock to some.  Most game developers would be amazed to hear that millions of players couldn’t rip themselves away from a game. Dong Nguyen, the Vietnamese game developer, obviously didn’t feel that way.

For those unfamiliar with Flappy Bird, all it consists of is a slight tap of the phone screen to make your bird go up and in between two green pipes. No, really, that’s all it is. That is the game that has been deemed too addicting by the creator.

Will Kriss, an MMCC student from Mt. Pleasant, called the game “frustrating” but not necessarily addicting, though admittedly he was a first-time player.

Many agree with the fact that it is frustrating. Players have found the game incredibly difficult and have spent hours trying to just get a score in the double digits. Kriss also said that “before I knew what the game was, I thought the screenshots online were of a weird new Mario game because of the green pipes.”

Antonio Colley of Detroit also had some thoughts: “I only played two rounds of the game before I said forget it. I watched my roommates put tons of pointless effort into a game with no point.”

It seems that players of the game either love it or hate it. There is no in between. Since the game has been pulled from app stores, people have been going on Amazon and Ebay trying to sell their phones with the game still installed.

Dong Nguyen, the creator of Flappy Bird, took the game off the iOS and Google Play app stores, making the game unavailable to new players. The game brought in an average revenue of $50,000 day from advertisements, according to an interview that Nguyen did with The Verge. Most people would be ecstatic over $50,000 a day, but Nguyen felt the game was too addicting and that fueled his decision to make the game unavailable. The game reached 50 million downloads.

Many clones have been created since the game was removed from app stores. Currently #1 on iTunes free apps is Flying Cyrus – Wrecking Ball. It is the same idea as the original except that it is Miley Cyrus’ head, tongue out of course, flying between a hammer and a wrecking ball. Even the band Fall Out Boy put their own spin on the game by releasing Fall Out Bird. That game has the four band members as characters and they duck and weave in between guitar heads.

So if you are one of the players who missed out on the original game – and aren’t worried about addiction — there are still a variety ways to get the experience. The game’s popularity is still soaring, even though it’s no longer on the market.

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