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Sequel to 'Flappy Bird' coming in August with less addiction, more multiplayer

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Unexpected iOS hit "Flappy Bird," which caused a stir after its developer yanked the title from the App Store while it sat atop the most downloaded charts, is poised to make a return this summer complete with multiplayer and "less addictive" qualities.

Nguyen
Flappy Bird creator Dong Ha Nguyen. | Source: Agence France-Presse via The Wall Street Journal


Flappy Bird developer Dong Nguyen told CNBC's Kelly Evans on Wednesday that he plans to relaunch a version of the game on Apple's iOS App Store in August after having pulled it down in February for being too addictive.

"Flappy Bird was designed to play in a few minutes when you are relaxed," Nguyen said at the time. "But it happened to become an addictive product. I think it has become a problem. To solve that problem, it's best to take down Flappy Bird. It's gone forever."

Apparently he spoke too soon.

The upcoming version will reportedly contain "less addictive" gamplay, but Nguyen didn't elaborate on what that could mean. A multiplayer option will also be added as part of the revamp.

Following an unexpected and rapid rise to the top of the app charts, Flappy Bird was taken down after players began harassing Nguyen over the game's supposedly addictive qualities. The game, which first hit the App Store in May 2013, went viral after word of its easy-to-play, difficult-to-master gameplay spread via YouTube and social networks.
post #2 of 21

Who cares, the game was terrible.

post #3 of 21
lol. ah, AI... riding the flappy wave some more. 1smile.gif

I think my high score was, like, 7.

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- Gordon Hinckley

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post #4 of 21

I remember him mentioning he developed the game in 3 days.  He has been telling new Game is coming but its not yet on Store!  

 

Given the many mimic copies of this game, and its really not hard to implement. Even I have my own Bird App which is almost same as the original.

 

Not sure what is stopping him!

post #5 of 21
The ammount of copycat developers on iOS is disgusting. I've even seem Flappy Spiderman. This hurts independent developers with original ideas. We have all these parasitic developers who feed off other people's success for a quick buck and in turn dilute the App Store and confuses
consumers.

Apple should take down all the knockoff clutter and clean up the App Store a little.
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chandra69 View Post
 

I remember him mentioning he developed the game in 3 days.  He has been telling new Game is coming but its not yet on Store!  

 

Given the many mimic copies of this game, and its really not hard to implement. Even I have my own Bird App which is almost same as the original.

 

Not sure what is stopping him!

 

Profit margins are tight I guess, $50,000 a day just doesn't it anymore ;)

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post #7 of 21
Nothing this guy says appears to make any sense at all...
post #8 of 21

He thinks the game is too addictive, and it doesn't have any in-app purchases. 

 

Clearly this guy doesn't understand the modern era of gaming. 

 

(I'd say /s, but I'm afraid it's, sadly, true.)

post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussiepaul View Post

Nothing this guy says appears to make any sense at all...

 

He's crazy...like a Flappy Fox.

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post #10 of 21

Addictive? How about boring, simple little game.

post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by jinglesthula View Post

lol. ah, AI... riding the flappy wave some more. 1smile.gif

I think my high score was, like, 7.

 

Ha, I got to 14...

 

...somehow I think we are in the wrong demographic.

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Better than my Bose, better than my Skullcandy's, listening to Mozart through my LeBron James limited edition PowerBeats by Dre is almost as good as my Sennheisers.
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post #12 of 21

Honestly, no one has made a “Crappy Turd” comment yet?

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
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Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
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post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlor View Post

He thinks the game is too addictive, and it doesn't have any in-app purchases. 

Clearly this guy doesn't understand the modern era of gaming. 

(I'd say /s, but I'm afraid it's, sadly, true.)

Maybe the sad part is that so many of us DO understand the modern era of gaming all too well.
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Honestly, no one has made a “Crappy Turd” comment yet?

I'm thinking sequel!

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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post #15 of 21

It annoys me that such a crappy game should get more attention than a game like "Badland" - such a great game! But, it does not surprise me either. Reality TV became popular for the same reason. Poor quality, gets lots of attention for all the wrong reasons and then boom, it becomes an instant financial success. The developer appears to have a meltdown, which sparks even more interest, more people talking about it and it's like a self perpetuating pile of ... well, you get the idea.

 

"rock bands died when amateurs won"(David Byrne)

post #16 of 21
It doesn't help when big developers try to cash in on it too:




I can understand it from small indie developers but when you have over $200m/year in revenue and 800 members of staff, there's no excuse. You can see the motivation with the coins for save points isn't to make a great game, it's to keep people paying.
post #17 of 21
Way too many mobile apps are pointing towards the sewer anyway. Is it a statement to the relative intelligence of the average mobile gamer? Techcrunch posted up an article on just how sorry it's becoming.
http://techcrunch.com/2014/05/16/the-app-store-is-proof-were-in-idiocracy/
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post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Way too many mobile apps are pointing towards the sewer anyway. Is it a statement to the relative intelligence of the average mobile gamer? Techcrunch posted up an article on just how sorry it's becoming.
http://techcrunch.com/2014/05/16/the-app-store-is-proof-were-in-idiocracy/

People can only buy what's available so the ultimate responsibility lies with the developers. That's why the guy who developed Republique said he'd stop complaining about the poor quality games and start making good ones. The problem is the incentive. When someone can make over $1m from an app that takes 3 days to build, why spend months developing a high quality title that might not make back its development costs? There was a small survey of developers that suggested 60% of apps don't break even. It was a small sample survey though and I suspect it's worse than that based on the revenue and downloads as well as number of developers:

Apple paid out $13b to developers for 60b downloads:

http://www.theverge.com/2013/10/22/4866302/apple-announces-1-million-apps-in-the-app-store

That means each app averages $0.22 in total. A lot of apps are free (~90%) and supported by ad revenue that isn't all paid by Apple so let's assume 10% of the downloads are paid out by Apple, you get $13b between 6b downloads, which is $2.17 average per app. There are nearly 300,000 registered developers for iOS. Apparently the top 25 developers account for 50% of that revenue too (25 out of nearly 300,000) and these are all game developers except Pandora. If you divide that out, you get top developers making on average $260m over a number of years. Gameloft makes around 200m euros alone. Angry Birds made $200m in revenue in 2012.

Candy Crush made $1.88b in 2013. Clash of Clans made $892m in 2013. Not all iOS but it's still a lot. These are the 2 highest grossing apps. Revenue is heavily weighted towards the top titles.

The number of developers for iOS is far higher than the number of games for all consoles combined - the PS3 and 360 have around 1500 games each. The PS4 only has ~80 developers making games for it.

In a way it's a good thing that so many people can develop apps now but it creates a mountain of really poor quality apps, many of which are little more than packaged websites. This creates a problem of visibility for developers who would like to publish for iOS.

Rovio had 51 titles before Angry Birds and almost went bankrupt. They were going to abandon Angry Birds too but found that it was addictive during testing.

That's the agenda now, it's not about creating a meaningful expression of art, it's about engaging an audience, which isn't the same thing - just get a simple, unique but viral idea. Flappy Bird is almost the pinnacle of this. 3 days to develop and although it didn't take off immediately, quickly got 50m downloads when it did.

This sort of thing has happened with music, news and TV. It's a back and forth between lowering audience standards and overpromoting low quality output. This has happened with hardware. Manufacturers sell cheap, low quality products and people lower their standards because of the impact on their wallets.

The only way to fix it is for people to put out high quality products and make people understand that it's worthwhile. That's what Apple does with their hardware - be a yardstick of quality. Developers did it years ago with the likes of Myst and Doom. They could have stuck to the 2D sprite games like everyone else but they chose to push the industry forward and took years developing their software.

Here's a good example of the experience of a mobile developer:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/213615/Behind_the_sales_numbers_of_mobile_hit_Badland.php

Just 2 guys, they got ~$400k revenue soon after launching their first game but it was only by going the free route that they could sustain their revenue. Every platform has audience expectations and mobile has now developed the expectation of low cost, low quality. With consoles, people expect to pay $60 for a game but they also expect a certain quality threshold.

However, is Flappy Bird any lower quality a game than Pong or Breakout? You can't simply cull apps on this basis. It's better to just select the best apps and promote those as examples of what the audience should expect. Leave the other apps together and give the audience powerful filtering tools to decide what they do and don't want.
post #19 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


People can only buy what's available so the ultimate responsibility lies with the developers. That's why the guy who developed Republique said he'd stop complaining about the poor quality games and start making good ones. The problem is the incentive. When someone can make over $1m from an app that takes 3 days to build, why spend months developing a high quality title that might not make back its development costs? There was a small survey of developers that suggested 60% of apps don't break even. It was a small sample survey though and I suspect it's worse than that based on the revenue and downloads as well as number of developers:

Apple paid out $13b to developers for 60b downloads:

http://www.theverge.com/2013/10/22/4866302/apple-announces-1-million-apps-in-the-app-store

That means each app averages $0.22 in total. A lot of apps are free (~90%) and supported by ad revenue that isn't all paid by Apple so let's assume 10% of the downloads are paid out by Apple, you get $13b between 6b downloads, which is $2.17 average per app. There are nearly 300,000 registered developers for iOS. Apparently the top 25 developers account for 50% of that revenue too (25 out of nearly 300,000) and these are all game developers except Pandora. If you divide that out, you get top developers making on average $260m over a number of years. Gameloft makes around 200m euros alone. Angry Birds made $200m in revenue in 2012.

Candy Crush made $1.88b in 2013. Clash of Clans made $892m in 2013. Not all iOS but it's still a lot. These are the 2 highest grossing apps. Revenue is heavily weighted towards the top titles.

The number of developers for iOS is far higher than the number of games for all consoles combined - the PS3 and 360 have around 1500 games each. The PS4 only has ~80 developers making games for it.

In a way it's a good thing that so many people can develop apps now but it creates a mountain of really poor quality apps, many of which are little more than packaged websites. This creates a problem of visibility for developers who would like to publish for iOS.

Rovio had 51 titles before Angry Birds and almost went bankrupt. They were going to abandon Angry Birds too but found that it was addictive during testing.

That's the agenda now, it's not about creating a meaningful expression of art, it's about engaging an audience, which isn't the same thing - just get a simple, unique but viral idea. Flappy Bird is almost the pinnacle of this. 3 days to develop and although it didn't take off immediately, quickly got 50m downloads when it did.

This sort of thing has happened with music, news and TV. It's a back and forth between lowering audience standards and overpromoting low quality output. This has happened with hardware. Manufacturers sell cheap, low quality products and people lower their standards because of the impact on their wallets.

The only way to fix it is for people to put out high quality products and make people understand that it's worthwhile. That's what Apple does with their hardware - be a yardstick of quality. Developers did it years ago with the likes of Myst and Doom. They could have stuck to the 2D sprite games like everyone else but they chose to push the industry forward and took years developing their software.

Here's a good example of the experience of a mobile developer:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/213615/Behind_the_sales_numbers_of_mobile_hit_Badland.php

Just 2 guys, they got ~$400k revenue soon after launching their first game but it was only by going the free route that they could sustain their revenue. Every platform has audience expectations and mobile has now developed the expectation of low cost, low quality. With consoles, people expect to pay $60 for a game but they also expect a certain quality threshold.

However, is Flappy Bird any lower quality a game than Pong or Breakout? You can't simply cull apps on this basis. It's better to just select the best apps and promote those as examples of what the audience should expect. Leave the other apps together and give the audience powerful filtering tools to decide what they do and don't want.

 

You fail to take into all the Apps made by businesses, such as banking and finance, retail shopping, telephone companies etc.

 

Thousands of Apps paid for by corporates to service their customers by having a presence on iOS, Android and others.

Better than my Bose, better than my Skullcandy's, listening to Mozart through my LeBron James limited edition PowerBeats by Dre is almost as good as my Sennheisers.
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post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

You fail to take into all the Apps made by businesses, such as banking and finance, retail shopping, telephone companies etc.

Thousands of Apps paid for by corporates to service their customers by having a presence on iOS, Android and others.
http://148apps.biz/app-store-metrics/

So how does this translate to actual downloads? Have a look at the top 200 free iOS apps here in the US:
http://www.distimo.com/leaderboards/apple-app-store-for-iphone/united-states/top-overall/free

and paid:
http://www.distimo.com/leaderboards/apple-app-store-for-iphone/united-states/top-overall/paid

and top-grossing overall:
http://www.distimo.com/leaderboards/apple-app-store-for-iphone/united-states/top-overall/gross

If you want to make money in the App Store what category looks to be the most profitable?
Edited by Gatorguy - 5/18/14 at 7:38am
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post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

You fail to take into all the Apps made by businesses, such as banking and finance, retail shopping, telephone companies etc.

Thousands of Apps paid for by corporates to service their customers by having a presence on iOS, Android and others.

Those don't change the direct revenue for the apps, those would come into the category of apps that are like packaged websites. It is a whole other set of significant revenue though:

http://eurapp.eu/sites/default/files/Sizing%20the%20EU%20App%20Economy.pdf

"EU developers took in $23.7 billion (€17.5 billion) in revenue in 2013, and we forecast that figure will increase to $85.3 billion (€63 billion) in five years. In addition to $8.1 billion (€6.0 billion) in app sales, in-app spending for virtual goods, and advertising, EU developers recognized $15.6 billion (€11.5 billion) in 2013 from contract labor. And much of the developer-for-hire business is for companies that aren’t really in the app business per se but use apps to support and market their mainstream offerings like financial services, retailing, and packaged goods."

There's more revenue building apps for other people than selling them and that further reinforces the point, which is that apps for the most part aren't high enough quality to encourage customers to pay a lot of money for them. The biggest revenue earners are games by far:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/chuckjones/2013/11/01/games-drive-the-most-revenue-on-apples-app-store-and-google-play/

"Games have increased their share of total revenue over the past year. Games share of total App revenue has increased from 64% in September 2012 to 77% a year later.
In-app purchases generated 92% of revenue
54% of the Top 400 iPhone revenue apps were Games with the iPad at 50%
The revenue share of these Games were 84% on the iPhone and 73% on the iPad"

If you look at Candy Crush's most popular in-app purchases, it's extra lives and extra moves. Candy Crush is free to play. The App Store had $10b in sales in 2013. If you assume Candy Crush's $1.88b in revenue in 2013 is made from at least $0.5b iOS, these extra lives and moves have generated over 1/20th of Apple's entire App Store revenue.

The fact that 92% of revenue is in-app purchases shows that developers are trying to behave like casinos feeding on gambling addiction. They create scenarios where people almost succeed in a game but try to extract a payment in order to actually progress.

In games like Super Mario and in fact many old games, there were limited lives and failing would send you back multiple levels to start over. Modern games don't do that nearly so much. Mobile games now try to monetize that desire to avoid being sent back to start over or just keep you addicted enough like social media so that constant ads keep the money rolling in. Steve Jobs said the same about news outlets:

"Some of these papers — news and editorial gathering organizations — are really important. I don’t want to see us descend into a nation of bloggers myself. I think we need editorial more than ever right now. Anything that we can do to help the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and other news gathering organizations find new ways of expression so they can afford to get paid, so they can afford to keep their news gathering editorial operations in tact, I’m all for. What we have to do is figure out a way to get people to start paying for this hard earned content. So [the tablet industry] provides us an opportunity to offer something more than just a web page and to start charging something for that."

App Store developers are the development equivalent of bloggers. There's a place for both and bloggers can get news out faster and even make more meaningful commentary but they don't hold themselves to the same editorial standards.
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