“Flappy Bird”–a game that’s become the most popular app for the Android and iOS–is deceptively simple yet addicting, and its creator says he was taken aback by how successful is has become.
The game’s developer, Dong Nguyen of Vietnam, recently gave an interview about creating the game and the meteoric rise to the top of the App Store.
“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 told The Chocolate Lab Apps website.
Nguyen said that he didn’t use any promotional materials for the game, adding that “all accounts on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram about Flappy Bird are not mine. The popularity could be my luck.”
He added that many of the “Western-made mobile games” are overly complicated. “So please try to make more simple games, learning how players react should help,” he said.
In the game, one controls a small “bird” going through a series of tubes. There’s no boss or anything else, just raw difficulty. Many users have expressed frustration with the game but say they can’t put it down.
According to The Verge, Nguyen said that he’s earning an average of $50,000 per day from in-app ads. In comparison, the popular Candy Crush Saga generates about $850,000 per day.
“The reason Flappy Bird is so popular is that it happens to be something different from mobile games today, and is a really good game to compete against each other,” Nguyen told the website. “People in the same classroom can play and compete easily because [Flappy Bird] is simple to learn, but you need skill to get a high score.”
“Flappy Bird has reached a state where anything added to the game will ruin it somehow, so I’d like to leave it as is,” Nguyen added. “I will think about a sequel but I’m not sure about the timeline.”
“Flappy Bird” has been downloaded approximately 50 million times and has more than 48,000 reviews on the App Store.
Many have said that the game isn’t necessarily fun, but it is addicting.
“Flappy bird is by far the most annoying game you will ever play in your life. It will make you so angry you will literally scream (I am not kidding you). The game itself is nothing special. It is just a bird that is more or less a falling brick with a vague bird-like appearance. The bird will basically just drop dead right as you are about to reach a new high score. It is almost like it had a heart attack mid-flap or killed itself on a random pane of plexiglass. The bird also defies physics, falling faster than even remotely possible and thus ending the extent of your sanity and happiness. The game is not fun but it is addicting,” wrote one reviewer.
Here is a tutorial on how to “hack” the game: