An article claiming that Flappy Bird creator Dong Nguyen is dead due to suicide and seven others killed themselves over the game is from a “satire” website.
Huzlers.com published the article on Sunday, generating thousands of “likes” and shares on Facebook and tweets on Twitter. “Creator of ‘Flappy Bird’Commits Suicide 7 Others Also Suicide This Morning Due To Flappy Bird,” the headline reads.
The article–like many articles published on Huzlers–features a juvenile writing style with poor grammar. “Flappy Bird developer Dong Nguyen has just been found dead in his home with a gunshot wound in his head. Authorities are confirming that Nguyen committed suicide by shooting himself in the head with a pistol. Authorities are saying that the sensational game Flappy Bird had something to do with the suicide,” it reads.
However, at the bottom of the website, Huzlers says it is satire.
“Huzlers.com is a combination of real shocking news and satire news to keep its visitors in a state of disbelief,” the disclaimer reads. All the stories published on the site aren’t real.
A number of people shared it, thinking it was legitimate.
“Illuminati written all over it,” one person wrote. “More money, more problems,” added another.
“R.I.P ! But yo i got high score of 50! FWM!” another wrote.
Over the weekend, Nguyen said that he’s taking the game–which he said was making him $50,000 per day in ads–down because it was stressing him out.
Prior to the decision, he elaborated on the game’s success in an interview to the The Chocolate Lab Apps website.
“I made the game alone so there is no team, and my games are very simple so there is no need for much manpower resources. I like to reuse my artwork from game to game. The bird in Flappy Bird, I actually drew in 2012 to use in a platformer game but the project was cancelled. All the programming took around 2-3 days at best with all the tuning to make the gameplay feel right. In my games, there is no impossible situations that players cannot pass,” he said.
But that experience soured after the game rose to mass popularity.
Nguyen, from Hanoi, wrote on Twitter on Saturday that the Internet sensation caused by the game “ruins my simple life” and he now hated it.
“I will take Flappy Bird down. I cannot take this anymore,” he wrote.
Nguyen had agreed to talk to The Associated Press about the game in an interview scheduled for Friday, but canceled.
On Twitter he didn’t address the inflated downloads allegation but denied suggestions he was withdrawing the game because it breached another game maker’s copyright.
“It is not anything related to legal issues. I just cannot keep it anymore,” he wrote.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.