Flappy Bird - a punch in every developers face

Discussion in 'Public Game Developers Forum' started by RobinK, Feb 4, 2014.

  1. RobinK

    RobinK Active Member

    Jun 30, 2013
    I was pretty shocked when I downloaded Flappy Bird today. I just saw some articles about it here on TA and other iOS sites and thought I have to download it, because it seems that everybody talks about it.
    I played the game for 5 minutes and deleted it. I can´t figure out why such a crappy game is so successful.
    It has no attribute of a good game:
    -Game play we have seen a million times
    -Graphics are nothing special and repetitive
    -Collision detection: sometimes you die even before you touched the pipes <- thats a no-go in my opinion
    -No music
    -Not polished at all

    The game seems to me like a first try of a new developer...
    I also developed my first game (Gravity Freeze https://itunes.apple.com/de/app/gravity-freeze/id686950363?mt=8) which took me nearly 2 years, since I had to learn to program, to make graphics and to make music.
    It has unique gameplay, moderat graphics and is pretty addictive. So I´m a little upset that a game like Flappy Bird can make it nowadays on the Appstore, while I can´t even pay my developer account with my revenue.

    So what do you think is the secret behind Flappy Bird?
    Is it only the extremely high (and unfair) difficulty (which is in my opinion caused not on purpose but by the lack of developer skills)?
    What does Flappy Bird better than my game does? (okay it is another category)


  2. copaeci

    copaeci Well-Known Member

    Nov 2, 2012
    student, writer, reviewer, beta tester
    Lucky... It's the main factor why its success... Though I have been bored with angry birds, but I think angry birds is better than flappy bird. Also, the game was booming after pewdiepie made video of it together with some TA folks play that game. I read some reviews at my local AppStore and most of them said if pewdiepie was the one who bring them to download the game.

    Well, i doubt if that dev had use pewdiepie to promote their game but it's absolutely clear if there's a popular person played your game, in this case: pewdiepie (he has so many subscribers and followers), he will bring great impact for your game. In other word, looks like pewdiepie was the man behind the successful of flappy bird. That's just my opinion. I played the game for 5 minutes, and I couldn't find what's the greatest part from the game. It's hard but it's not something that can keep me along with it.. Angry bird could hook me up for one hour or so on, but not for this game. It's addictive but it's too dull to be addicted for... and looks like this game will bring a new genre of endless runner game... An endless flying game with flappy style... #sigh
  3. Destined

    Destined Well-Known Member

    Aug 11, 2013
    Price is obviously one big difference. Free will always be way more popular than paid in pretty much all situations.

    The name is pretty good.

    Obviously the competitive element has caught on.

    On your game, I think the problem with paid games from no name indies, with no advertising, no reviews etc is people don't want to take the risk, not knowing what they will get.
  4. ryansumo

    ryansumo Well-Known Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    Freelance artist
    Like my partner said. "Looks like there's gonna be A LOT more indies making games in the next few months."

    The App Store can be a real crapshoot, don't take it too hard.
  5. dedyp79

    dedyp79 Well-Known Member

    Mar 21, 2013
    Hi, i am just a gamer and want to comment about this :)
    I think the cute icon and free price and small size make everyone try to download...after that found the game very simple but why sooo damn hard to make just 3 score, so they tried again and again until get at least 1-2 scores up then the first one tried and become tired but satisfied, then feel angry to this flappy bird whyyy sooo damn hard and then make a review about that game difficulties and want to make challenges to everyone with the word " don't download this game if you don't want to break your iphone lol, its very challenging but so addictive , love it..hate it..love it..hate it "
    So thats the point about this game,cute and simple and very hard then everyone make a review 5 star and the review makes others curious and download it...and then repeat again with the same review...and so on like circle.
    But i think not everyone keep this game on their iphone..they just curious and try it then after 5 minutes deleted...very simple and cute damn silly hard game but fun to challenge everyone to try it.
    Just make everyone curious to download it !! (its free btw).
    Lol thats my thinking only...thanks :D
  6. Gov

    Gov Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2013
    I enjoy it, makes it much more better when you're playing and competing with a crowd if friends siblings parents lol
  7. dedyp79

    dedyp79 Well-Known Member

    Mar 21, 2013
    About your game (gravity freeze) ,i just checked,interesting gameplay...i think you just have to change the theme...make it cute..so girls can like it also but not feminime theme...maybe like birds theme or something else and the graphics style you can follow like kingdom rush or minecraft or kairosoft and or anything else which popular now and before.
  8. PeteOzzy

    PeteOzzy Well-Known Member

    Oct 30, 2013
    Norwich, England
    I honestly don't get it either; it's the opposite of everything I look for in a game. It's games like Flappy Bird that make people believe mobile gaming can't be taken seriously. But I see FB as the Justin Bieber of the iOS scene; standing from the outside looking in, I see nothing of worth but millions others do and good for them.

    It's not like other artists don't succeed in the industry despite the Bieber following and the same is true of the AppStore. I don't mean to sound harsh, but if your game is struggling I doubt it's because of the popularity of one other game on the market. I'm not criticising your product as I haven't seen it but maybe there are better outputs for the passion than hating a game that will be forgotten in two weeks
  9. originalcopy

    originalcopy Well-Known Member

    Sep 10, 2009
    i think this game is only successful because that pathetic excuse for a human being pewdiepie made it successful.
  10. Eli

    Eli ᕕ┌◕ᗜ◕┐ᕗ
    Staff Member Patreon Silver Patreon Gold

    Flappy Bird is as much of a punch in every developer's face as the actual winner of Power Ball is a punch in every lottery ticket buyer's face. The dude got lucky, his game went viral. No need to get salty about it.
  11. BadBotGames

    BadBotGames Well-Known Member

    Jul 24, 2011
    London, England
    #11 BadBotGames, Feb 4, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2014
    Tbh I think it's pretty well designed. It's fun, the sound effects spark up emotions and the developer won the "social lottery". Any app that gets thier own memes etc is heading for #1. If anything it's good news for all devs
  12. flippfly

    flippfly Member

    Dec 17, 2011
    Wrong attitude

    Hey there,
    I'm a developer, and I actually find Flappy Bird's success encouraging. It shows that an individual can still make a game that tops the charts while big companies are spending tens of thousands in user acquisition to maintain their spot. It should also serve as an example of the types of game that mobile players want right now.

    As to your assertions about the game's qualities: I think you would do well to learn from games like this, rather than be bitter.

    Flappy Bird has a lot of qualities that mobile players like: The visuals are instantly appealing. The mechanic is understandable from screenshots - the game can be acquired for free and the gameplay is understood in an instant. It's challenging, can be played with one hand in short sessions, and it has meaningful social sharing mechanics that combine well with the game's difficulty. In short - it's a great game for phones.
  13. RobinK

    RobinK Active Member

    Jun 30, 2013
    Thanks for your feedback guys.
    So it seems that the game made it because of its short game sessions, the annoying but addictive difficulty, the social aspect to beat your friends and a lot of luck.

    @flippfly: You are right, I should be encouraged by it´s success. Thats a really good point. Indies can make it even nowadays where the big companies take over the AppStore .
    I think I´m gonna make my game free, so a wider audience has access to it.
    And maybe my next game will be the next Flappy Bird (but a better one :D )
  14. Destined

    Destined Well-Known Member

    Aug 11, 2013
    I think OP is more upset about the way his game went than the success of flappy bird. I agree with others who have said it gives hope to indie developers that there is still room be noticed in such a big market.

    I am happy for the developers success and is really cool that he was able to achieve that.

    Although you have some games which are lucky like flappy bird and hit big on first game the only real correlation for success is the number of apps you release. The more you release the more successful you become generally. I assume this is because you learn and get better and also start to build a market presence.
  15. Tinytouchtales

    Tinytouchtales Well-Known Member

    Jul 24, 2012
    Berlin, Germany
    In my opinion Flappy Bird is a blessing for mobile gaming. 5 years of brain washed casual games and now comes a real hardcore game, which you can't make easier with purchasing some gold coins.
    This game fills a nieche and hopefully some of the casual gamers realize that interesting and formost challenging gameplay is what makes games fun, its not a scheduled skinnerbox, it challenge and the feeling of mastering a thing, just like super hexagon or darksouls. I hope that in the coming month more of these Games will see a bigger audience.

    And sure its one of those app store storys that only come true once every year or so, but its definetaly a very good game for its genre!
  16. ramon31

    ramon31 Well-Known Member

    Sep 4, 2011
    Sometimes you guys over think things.
    It's popular... that is all!
  17. Appvism

    Appvism Well-Known Member

    Feb 9, 2013

    Some good points made here by others, I do agree with most myself. I can understand any negative feelings from, say, other devs however but generally my own opinion is fair play and well done to them.

    Of course, success breeds success, and it was a result of all the media/online exposure (plus reading this http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/210008/Flappy_Bird_is_a_game_that_accepts_that_it_is_stupid_to_be_a_game.php ) that i ended up downloading it and trying it for myself.

    I actually think the game itself suits the iPhone and think the graphics are not bad! In the end, i (strangely) find the lack of music adds to the general "cheap/stupid feel of the game" (i mean no offence with this!). Finally, the difficulty level and frustration from playing has added to the word of mouth/exposure...

    Just my thoughts!..
  18. It's successful cause it is a great social high score game, and that it is free.
  19. jaze

    jaze Well-Known Member

    Aug 19, 2010
    #19 jaze, Feb 5, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2014
    the icon and art style while simple are at least consistent. Have to agree though the games a lame. But so are a million other ios flash like crapy mini games.
  20. Destined

    Destined Well-Known Member

    Aug 11, 2013
    Apart from the sometimes clearly missing the pipe and dying the game is pretty polished and well done IMO.

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