Flappy Bird is a popular side-scrolling app for mobile devices in which you guide a small bird through tiny gaps.
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Story & Themes
To make the bird fly, you tap the screen. If you don't tap quickly enough, the bird will hit the ground and the game is over. If the bird touches a green pipe, even momentarily, the game is over. It's extremely frustrating, even more so with the sound on because of the loud, jarring noises made by any contact with the pipes.
There are no lives, no health bars, no power-ups, no secret levels, and no puzzles. The game is based entirely upon mechanical skill. If you play for long enough, you will indeed begin to improve. A score from 10-19 points awards you a bronze medal. 20-29 awards a silver, 30-39 awards a gold, and anything above 40 will earn you a platinum. There is no other incentive.
The game's success can be attributed to many features. Its simple and yet frustrating rules, its mindless gameplay, and the ease with which you can restart all contribute to keeping that phone in your hand. Additionally, Flappy Bird was free to download, and its advertisements are refreshingly minimalist.
Most important of all, however, is that the game is fair. Punishment is swift and just. There are no cheats, and glitches are unheard of. When someone posts a screenshot of their high score to Facebook, you know they earned it.
- Why do you keep playing this game if it makes you so frustrated?
- What is a copycat game? Why might they be a problem for game designers?
- Should very young kids be allowed to play this game? Why or why not?
- How might you manage your time playing Flappy Bird when the game is played in such short increments?
- Why do you think Dong Nguyen took the game down?
- Why does it matter who made this game?
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Cannot be played online