2Flappy Bird Wasn’t Always a Hit
There’s a general sense, because of the recent news surrounding Flappy Bird, that it was always a hit. The truth, however, is that it wasn’t. Flappy Bird actually launched last May and didn’t become a fan-favorite until January 2014. Exactly how it jumped from obscurity to worldwide popularity isn’t well understood at this time.
3Flappy Bird Brought In Serious Cash—We Think
The Verge reported recently that Nguyen made $50,000 a day at the height of the Flappy Bird popularity. Some reports have said that he didn’t actually make that much money. Nguyen wouldn’t confirm what he made each day, saying only that he was generating a boatload of cash. It’s odd, then, that with all that cash coming in, he decided to take the app down from marketplaces.
4It Wasn’t Popular Among Critics
Although Flappy Bird’s popularity soared, it really wasn’t an instant hit. In fact, the game received middling reviews in app stores. On Metacritic, a place where reviewers’ evaluations are all combined into a single score, the game could only muster a rating in the mid-50s. Based on the critics’ sentiments Flappy Bird’s sudden popularity might seem odd. But it just goes to show that the critics aren’t always right.
5Nguyen Has Other Games
6Addiction Stands at Root of the Game’s Demise
7Rabid Fans Also Played a Part
Rabid fans were also at the center of Nguyen’s reason to get rid of Flappy Bird. He reported that people were sending him emails, were obsessive over the game and created havoc in his daily life. What was supposed to be a fun game turned into an obsession for gamers who couldn’t accept anything short of perfection.
8Nguyen Got Death Threats
9Copycats Quickly Sprung Up
If the Internet is anything, it’s a place where copycats run amok. That’s why it’s no surprise that several Flappy Bird copycats have cropped up across operating systems and application marketplaces. Some developers saw an opportunity for quick success, and the cash that went with it, and pounced. It was inevitable, but still sad to see. It remains to be seen whether any of the copycats see any success.
10Used Devices Running Flappy Bird Went On Sale
Here’s an odd twist in the story. Some people decided that rather than update their devices and let Flappy Bird just fade away, they would try to sell the devices on eBay with a copy of Flappy Bird on it. As of this writing, one auction reportedly has a top bid of $99,900, while another is more than $90,000. Are they really serious? Is an iPhone with Flappy Bird really worth that much money for a few hours of fun? And how long will it hold its value given how quickly games fade from popularity?
11Malware Creators Pounced
This should be no surprise to anyone, but malware creators also pounced on the Flappy Bird fiasco. According to Sophos and Trend Micro, several applications claiming to feature the Flappy Bird functionality (and in some cases, calling themselves Flappy Bird) have cropped up in third-party Android app stores. Upon downloading them and trying to launch them, they, in some cases, force folks to text their numbers to a third party. Upon doing so, charges are billed to their wireless bills. It’s a malware-ridden world.