Although some may consider Flappy Bird as an extremely pointless game, this hot mobile game has been very popular especially among teens in the recent months. Flappy Bird is an extremely simple game which doesn’t have a real motive or objective. The player of the game has to indefinitely guide a bird horizontally to the right making sure it does not hit any pipes. A tap on the screen give Flappy Bird a burst of energy upwards to help jump over pipes but once a pipe is hit, the game is over. The concept is similar to the “Helicopter Game”. Even though this game might sound completely unoriginal and simple, it is actually not very easy to get past many pipes. In fact, Taylor Casti, an avid fan of Flappy Bird took 30 minutes just to get past 4 pipes.
Flappy Bird’s rise to popularity in the last few months has got people addicted to this simple but extremely frustrating game. With about 50 million downloads, people played Flappy Bird everywhere, even in school classrooms just to try to beat their friend’s high score. However, Flappy Bird has received a mediocre rating of 5.4/10 by IGN reviewers despite its popularity due to its simple interface and lack of goals.
On February 9th, the game was discontinued to the public by becoming unavailable in the Google Play store and the App Store. Flappy Bird fans all over the world were utterly disappointed. The creator of the game, Dong Nguyen, only cited a mysterious message via his Twitter account that he had to remove the game because he “couldn’t take it anymore.” Some fans speculate that Nguyen may have boosted the game’s download count with his own computer bots so he was feeling guilty while others believe he may have been influenced by death threats. No one knows the real reason but perhaps Nguyen himself, but we all know that Flappy Bird is now gone, or is it?
Following Flappy Bird’s downfall, many iOS and Android developers realized the enormous hungry market of Flappy Bird fans who wanted to play the game but didn’t have it downloaded. Within a few days of Flappy Bird’s discontinuation, dozens of new parodies of Flappy Bird rose to popularity some of which hit the top 100 apps in the Apple app store. Here are a few parodies that were created so that you can still enjoy the old Flappy Bird game.
1. Splashy Fish. This game is one of the best versions of Flappy Bird out there so far. It changes the bird into a fish and the background is underwater instead of a city. Other than that, just like all the other parodies, it has the exact same game mechanics as Flappy Bird. However, the developers for Splashy Fish added trophies for every score of 10 up to 100 which makes the user want a higher score all that much more. The best part of the game is that after 20 games, you can play extreme mode where splashy fish moves twice as fast! The drawbacks of this version are the ads. They appear everywhere, even sometimes interrupting your game but it is definitely worth playing extreme mode if you’re an avid Flappy Bird fan.
2. Flappy Bert. This kid-friendly version of Flappy Bird features Bert, one our favorite childhood characters from Sesame Street. This version of the game is much easier than the regular Flappy Bird because the distance between the pipes is much bigger. The best part about this version is the sound effects especially when Bert yells “Ernie” whenever he dies. Overall, this version is great for people who are too frustrated with the regular version or don’t want many ads.
3. Flappy Party. This version of Flappy Bird is not a mobile game, but it is played on a website. Flappy Party is an exact replica of Flappy Bird but with capabilities that Flappy Bird players a few months ago could only dream of. This game allows you to create lobbies where you can play with your friends in real-time. This allows you to see exactly where your friends’ birds are at any time so you can compete with them. You can also play in the main lobby with hundreds of other Flappy Bird players at once to try to get the highest score. The high scores reset every 15 minutes. The multiplayer aspect of Flappy Party to bring back the original Flappy Bird makes this the best version to date.
Although Flappy Bird fans may have taken a hit with its discontinuation, many are happy that it was provoked the work of other developers to create other versions which all offer something different. To play these versions, simply download them from the Google Play store or the Apple store onto your mobile phone for free and play Flappy Party with your friends at http://www.flappyparty.com/.
About the contributor: David Guan is a student at University of Washington in Seattle, WA. He likes technology and creating apps as well as playing games. He also enjoys playing badminton.