Singapore reacts to Flappy Bird discontinuation

The Vietnam-based maker of Flappy Bird Dong Nguyen announced over the weekend that he is discontinuing the addictive game, just as the wider world was taking notice of it.

A series of tweets from @Dongatory, Dong’s Twitter account at about 3am 9 February Singapore time spell out the announcement. I just cannot keep it anymore,” he tweets. “I also don’t sell ‘Flappy Bird’, please don’t ask.” He gave no reasons for the move other than to tweet that it is not about legal issues.

Earlier, on February 6, he had tweeted about how Flappy Bird ruined his “simple life.”

Some have suggested that the stress of being accused of copyright infringement has taken its toll. As Flappy Bird grew more and more successful, there came accusations that the art had been blatantly copied from Super Mario Brothers (Kotaku later corrected the impression and called it ‘unoriginal art’), and that the game was only popular because it had been downloaded by bots. Disgruntled gamers also complained in the comments section for the game on the Android Play Store that the listed high scores could only have been from bots.

Singapore Flappy Bird fan @sakkksak tweeted, “It’s just challenging. Showing off comes with being able to show off a higher score to than other friends who find it challenging too,” while @CSExodus explained that there is a magic to being able to get a higher score than others who have been playing the game for a longer time.

While the game can be considered a clone of earlier games, NPR notes that “He didn’t copy the game mechanics or storyline (there is no Flappy story), only a look.” Success does colour perceptions, however, and being thought the worst of can be wearing for someone unused to fame.

In a Singapore discussion about Flappy Bird’s demise, @CSExodus alludes to the hate Dong has received, to which @Joanna_Jane responds: “Surely all game developers want to be successful?”

[quote]“Cyberbullying can get really ugly.”[/quote]

Nathan of @hellofrmsg, an account for which the Singapore-based curator changes weekly replies: “Cyberbullying can get really ugly.”

Asked if he will escape Flappy Bird by working on something else, Dong hints that there is something else in the pipeline. In the meantime, Flappy Bird fans can try Iron Pants or Badland instead. This site suggests several Flappy Birds clones which can be played online.

Alex Lim of The Techblogger recently reported on our love affair with Flappy Bird here.