alanthegenerous's Flappy Bird (iPhone) review

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Flappy Bird Review

There is a reason my parents think games are waste of time

iOS games have been rapidly increasing in quality over the past few years. Games like Device 6 and The Room are a few examples of excellent games that take advantage of the handheld platform and create many new ideas. Unfortunately, Flappy Bird lacks all qualities of the aforementioned games, and is a constant reminder of why I do not often play iOS games.

The antonym on innovation

Nothing about Flappy Bird is neither new nor entertaining. Its gameplay is centered around tapping a screen to elevate your character, attempting to get through obstacles, a mechanic that has been seen thousands of times before. If you die you lose everything, so it has the feel of an arcade game, just like millions of other iOS games. The only progress that carries on from turn to turn is your high score, which you can share on Facebook and Twitter, just like every other iOS game The game is very tedious and you will die a lot of times before setting any real high scores giving the game an addictive edge, which is the sole reason this game is popular. A major problem I encountered was terrible hit reception. I would be passing through an obstacle when suddenly I would die. Other times I would travel directly through an edge, allowing me to continue my flight.

This is as deep as the gameplay gets. There is no nuance to it, just tapping, dying and restarting. There are no enemy units in the game, the only threat are the giant green poles The gameplay has no new ideas to offer and ends up feeling like a bad Jetpack Joyride clone.

Visually, the game has a cutesy look, similar to that of a Super Mario Bros. game. This is the one area of that game that actually excels, but yet again brings no new ideas to the table. The character sprites are very basic and would have been easily achievable on the NES, but this does not bring down the game.

The game is a free download so naturally it needs a method to bring money to the table and keep the lights on. Flappy Bird’s way of generating a profit is placing ads everywhere. They are unavoidable and if you accidentally click one you will be transported out of the game to a web page. Great. This drags down the games otherwise pleasant aesthetic and makes me even more reluctant to return.

The soundtrack is very bare bones and only consists of the noise of the birds flapping wings and a dinging noise when you pass an obstacle. Nothing is even slightly new or interesting in this department unfortunately. An upbeat chiptune would have been a perfect fit for a game with such a retro paint coat and in the end the soundtrack just feels lacking.

All in all Flappy Bird stinks of a cheap money grab. From the completely unoriginal gameplay to the nearly absent soundtrack, there is no reason why you should play this game. The art is the only positive aspect of the entire game, but it is nothing you have not seen before. There is no one who I would recommend this game to. The only ground that Flappy Bird breaks is the ground beneath my feet as I smash it with the remains of my iPod. I do not understand why this game even exists, let alone why it is popular.

If you enjoyed Flappy Bird I recommend you quit playing video games and reconsider what you value in your life.

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