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Learnings from a FlappyBird that stopped flapping

February 10, 2014 |
5 B2B eCommerce Success Stories

What would you do if your app is ranked number one in app store and is giving you an advertising revenue of more than $50,000 per day? Shutting down that app will be last thing on your to do list. But that’s exactly what Dong Nguyen, developer of the viral game FlappyBird did.

People, who are unaware of FlappyBird, have missed one of the most simple and stupid games in history of mobile gaming. This game, developed by a Vietnamese developer in a time span of 3 days, does not sport high end graphics or cool offers; it’s just a bird that tries to fly through green pipes, these pipes are similar to the green tubes inspired from Super Mario.  The simplicity blended with mindless fun in this little game generated a huge amount of buzz in social media last week.

What does Flappy Bird Teach Us?

1.       Games are for Fun

Games that people play, either physically or in our mobiles can have only common trait attached to it, that’s fun. Our lives are filled with so much complexities, that we look out for every opportunity for having a heartfelt laugh.  Every time we crash land our bird in flappy bird we get our childish instincts back and this is the success for this game.

 2.       Keep It Simple

Game developers and app designers across the world brainstorm every day to bring out the next big app. But seldom do they know that all that people need is something really simple, some small silly game that will keep them addicted for hours. Sometime the most complex problems have a very simple solution.

 3.       And Be Stupid too

Recent technological advances in mobiles have provided HD screens with high resolution picture quality, however FlappyBird just took us back to the old age of Contra and Super Mario. Most of the current generation would have at least had a chance to look at Super Mario when they were young and Flappy bird just rekindled those emotions. Sometimes it’s good to be stupid.

 4.       Be Original

You can be stupid at times, but money is not a stupid entity and when some new app starts racking up such huge amounts of money in ad revenue, surely some eyeballs will pop up. In the age of IP conflicts and patent issues, blindly copying a background of a very popular game will surely land the developer in trouble

Though Dong Nguyen’s tweet says otherwise, there have been a lot of concerns with respect to some blatant copy from Nintendo’s Super Mario, which has invited a lot of trouble.

If we look at the successful mobile games in iOS or android, it’s the simplicity and the fun factor which makes the game addictive to the users. In one end we have mobile games with high definition graphics occupying high megabytes of data, untouched by the users, while on the other end we have games like FlappyBird, with just a few kilobytes of data exciting the gamers all over the globe. Will the future game developers take this simple cue out of Flappybird? Let’s hope they will.


Ragu manages our entire Marketing activities at DCKAP. He has a firm belief that marketing should always capture the person's mind instead of merely gaining eye balls. He has a varied experience across Retail, Automobiles, Health Care and Manufacturing verticals. During his free time you can always find Ragu researching about world cinema and watching them.

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