"What Flappy Birds teaches us about what 'the people' want."


Fri, Feb 7th, 2014 12:00 by capnasty NEWS

On Polygon, Charles Pratt explains how Flappy Bird's surprising success is proof that nobody really knows what the audience wants. The author of the app is surprised as well, but no word of complaint yet on the impressive revenue the app is generating.

A single mistake, even a light brush of one pixel from the bird against a pipe will result in instant death. This sends your avatar plunging face-first to the ground, its single eye suddenly vacant. This setback doesn’t last for long, as the game makes it easy to make another run for a new high score.

The generosity of this easy restart has gotten commented on less than it should, perhaps because for most game developers it’s a benevolence they take for granted.

For those discussing the mobile space this might seem like a wasted opportunity. After all, that’s where the micro-transactions are supposed to go! The absence of any upselling and the swift return to the task at hand is what’s addicting about the game, and a little off-putting. It feels like finding yourself in a quiet countryside after living your whole life in a noisy city.



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