angrybirdsgoWe first learned about the existence of Angry Birds Go! way back in June, and a follow-up teaser video released in August led us to believe that the game would be some sort of go-kart racer along the lines of the classic Mario Kart series. Well, the very next month, a bunch of leaked images of a toy line for Angry Birds Go! seemed to hint that the game would be more of a behind-the-back version of typical Angry Birds flinging-and-smashing, though with a large ski-jump style launcher rather than a slingshot. Well, as it turned out, an official gameplay trailer released last month put those thoughts to rest as Angry Birds Go! is indeed a true kart racer. We've known since then that the game would be launching December 11th, but today Rovio has decided to soft-launch the title starting with the New Zealand App Store.

Being that Angry Birds Go! is free, if you are one of the many people with access to an NZ App Store account then you can go ahead and download the game right now to check it out. I've just done so myself, and after playing around with it for a few minutes it seems like all the pieces are in place for a solid kart racing experience. There's extensive car upgrading and customizing, quite a few different tracks to play through, and the graphics are beautiful. What remains to be seen, as is the case with pretty much all free-to-play games, is how the IAP will affect the game long-term. That's exactly what these sort of soft-launches are for though, so we'll have to wait for the worldwide launch to see if any tweaks will come from this soft-launch period.

If you don't have access to an NZ App Store account, then kick back for a couple of weeks and check out what people are saying in our forums until the official worldwide release of Angry Birds Go! on December 11th.

New Zealand App Store Link: Angry Birds Go!, Free (Universal)

  • hourglass

    I'm done with that franchise. They're just after more and more money.

    While that is acceptable in most cases, it is not in this case. Angry Birds is a dry well; there will be nothing new from it.

    • nini

      Except this is new, what do you want from them?

      • Eli Hodapp

        Shh, hating Angry Birds is the new "I don't like that band anymore, they're playing their songs on the radio."

      • mclifford82

        I also hear jumping to conclusions is popular on the internet also.

      • TheBitPilot

        How's that bathroom coming Eli? I heard we'll be getting Angry Birds toilet paper soon so you can even wipe your ass with that sorry franchise.

      • hourglass

        I don't hate Angry Birds. It's just nothing new.

      • hourglass

        This is basically a generic racing game. Every company and their Doge has one.

    • Makako

      "They're just after more and more money"

      Noooo!!!! How dare they!!!! By now they should just be doing stuff for free! Them evil money munchers, them!!!!

      • mclifford82

        Yeah, not really sure why anyone thinks a company is after anything but your money.

      • YourAverageDude

        Not me man. All the companies I buy from promise to put me first and guarantee the lowest prices!

      • themostunclean

        So why bother in the first place? Go make your own games then.

      • 21tigermike

        You're right... it's a braindead argument. If you want to call them ripoff artists. Great. I can hear Nintendo grinding their teeth from here.

        But give them credit: they created those 'characters'.. without characters you wouldn't have any merchandise, and wouldn't have any of this stuff.

      • hourglass

        What characters? They have some upset birds and some annoying pigs. Those aren't characters.

    • Taclys

      I don't have a problem with making money or being creative... But Angry Birds is a physics game about knocking various materials over and slaying pigs. It's not a racing game. What if the next Mario Kart featured throwing Mario into physics based towers to kill Goombas? Ehhh... Make a new franchise for your racing games. Angry Birds is getting worn too thin.

      • Naberos

        Or what if Mario, a traditional platformer, switched genres and was made into a racing game? Oh wait... what a stupid example.

      • appaddict

        How dare they try and jump genres. Shame on angry birds. Just think what would happen if in the next Mario game instead of jumping over barrels to save the girl from Donkey Kong they were running through pipes jumping on turtles, or doing side scrolling levels, or a racing game, or a street fighter type game, or a golf game, or a paint program, or they gave the dinosaur a game, or did an RPG instead, or was a party game, or featured just the bad guy in his on game, or maybe they did baseball or tennis or did a puzzle game where they made the plumber a doctor, or pair him up with his platform rival for an olympics game.

      • themostunclean

        Most ignorant comment of the day award.

      • chief78

        That'd be like Sonic doing something besides a platformer...oh wait....

      • Thaurin

        Sarcasm win.

    • Boony Tuesday

      Oh no! Did they just produce a product to make more money again? Who in the world does that?!!! And with they same characters they adore... I call fowl.

  • kimeh

    Does anyone know if is compatible with ipod 4?

    • Der-Kleine

      I just tried, so far it has always crashed after the loading screen for the main menu, so I guess that's an no.
      (This is on iOS 6.1.3 after a reboot)

      • Peter Bohanna

        thats really disappointing. I was wanting to play it. wonder if Rovio is try to make it compatible before its worldwide release. i hope they do.

  • WhiteHadal

    it looks really fun I'm gonna give it a try soon (:3)

  • Peter Bohanna

    maybe in meantime TA team can do a TA plays video on it?

    • skeletonlord

      That would be really quite helpful, there's two soft launched games I really want to play: Boom Beach and Angry Birds GO!

      • iosgaminggamer

        I got boom beach, fun for a couple of days, then gets really boring
        You can have 1 builder max
        Not fun at all sadly,
        Not reccommend

      • skeletonlord

        Hmm, I think I'll still download it, is Boom Beach a Canadian exclusive or will it be coming worldwide at some point?

        Again, Angry Birds GO will be a good game when it's out.

  • GaZ-OiD

    Boring old style game using angry bird characters, pass me the sick bucket

    • themostunclean

      'Cmon. What style isn't "old" at this point? Kart racers are just as relevant as any other genre and it's actually newer than a lot of others, RPGs for example.

      • metalmandave83

        I'm just glad it's not another runner.

  • B30

    Played a few races, and what I've seen so far it's an ordinary "freemium double currency racer" which is sometimes a bit laggy and crashes at times.

  • doublezz

    I am sick with Angry birds, especially the annoying birds voice.

    But this game is different and looks fun, I used to enjoy Activision's Crash Bandicoot Kart a lot in the early iOS game days.

    However, when I see it is free to play and offers IAP. Meh, sick.

  • OneBagTravel

    No thanks.

  • Boris Nguetie

    ENERGY TIMERS really?? the bird get tired after few minutes!!

  • FIFTHSUN2012

    Yeah, Metallica pretty much went downhill after Dave Mustaine left........ Seriously people they make games to make money, if the game is good then buy it, if not, don't.

  • Adan

    Shame that it looks horribly pixelated on the iPad Air... even the icon is not retina ready!

  • TheRealRealBazz

    It seems to have that character recharge mechanic that requires you to stop playing or use your in-game currency. Though, when you unlock more characters, I don't see it being that big of a problem.

    I'm enjoying it.

  • Zenfar

    Always up for a good Kart game but how about $0.99 with no IAP...

    • themostunclean

      .99¢ is pretty much free anyway. It wouldn't guarantee you any less IAP.

  • rnarvin

    Extremely disappointed to find out there's no online/local multiplayer feature.

    • Michael Gatto

      agreed... this was a no-brainer. hoping for an update.

  • Br0n5t3r

    This forum is losing it's shit

  • Kane

    Bird poop

  • JohnnyJ301

    Rovio should make a horror survival game called " Angry Birds Amnesia". One of the birds could play Daniel !!

  • Chicken Zooma

    I might stick to their soft drinks and avoid games!

  • ElectromagneticMelaniePulse

    I wanted this to be good, but it's painfully pay to win, to the point where it completely wrecks the game. I think they deserve credit for the degree to which it doesn't feel like a Mario Kart rip-off, but that isn't enough to make it worth playing. And it is definitely not worth playing.

  • galaxy124

    I like it. I love angry birds.

  • Peter Warrior

    I can't wait for Angry Birds Pachinko, 3D deluxe edition. Do you think Nintendo will add Rovio characters to its games as it did with Sega's?
    You know, I mean, as Rovio will eventually fade away...

    • falco

      Bad idea no

  • shieldser99

    Just seen a video on 'appspy' of this. It looks disappointing unfortunately, there are no laps etc, just single short drag races to collect coins and do up your cart, looks like a major grind. No GP or battle mode from what I can tell. This is not structured the way I thought it would be. No the Mario Kart game we had hoped for

  • Rusty

    Wow this game is looking AMAZING