Flap Away Birdie

Lilly Ball, Contributing Writer

You may have noticed the recent absence of a certain little yellow bird in app stores since Sunday, February 9th. The popular game, “Flappy Bird”, known for being infuriatingly difficult, was mysteriously deleted by its creator.

Dong Nguyen, the creator of the app, was reportedly making up to $50,000 a day from ads, making the app more successful than any of his other releases. But despite the success, Nguyen made his decision to take the app down on the 8th, breaking the news over twitter.

The app and its creator faced a lot of criticism right from the release. Blogs denounced the art of the app as plain and ordinary, and, after playing it myself, I agreed. I deleted the game after about an hours’ worth of intense concentration, resulting in a high score of 2. The game was simple, but difficult and addictive. And soon I couldn’t go on any social media website without seeing people competing with one another for higher scores. Social media sites were flooded with pictures of people showing off their high (and low) scores.

“Press people are overrating the success of my games. It is something I never want. Please give me peace,” he tweeted.

Nguyen deleted the game in hopes of finally getting his “peace” but after releasing the tweet, he was met with angry words, and even death threats. Users ruthlessly tore apart the game play, stating that downloading it was “the worst decision that they have ever made”, we all continued to play, but Nguyen must have felt the guilt of creating such an “infamous” game.

There has been speculation that “Flappy Bird” was deleted due to the app’s similarities to art work featured in Nintendo’s famous “Super Mario Bros” game. Nguyen has denied all claims and said via Twitter that it was not related to legal issues.

Ever since “Flappy’s” rise to fame, I could hardly go anywhere without seeing someone tapping away at their phone screens. In a dead silent class room, angered whispers and tapping could be heard. The addictiveness of the game gave students only another reason to use their phones during class. Now that the game is gone, teachers can now walk into class knowing that they have won this round, until the next crazy app comes along.

If you ever get past your stages of denial and anger, try to realize what Nguyen did that many app creators failed to do. His actions were meant to help not only himself, but the growing number of game players. Without the app available for downloading, we can now all live in peace knowing that no more relationships will be destroyed over a score of “5”. You may still have it on your phone, but look up from your screens and try paying attention in class for once. You are now free of your “Flappy Bird” demons.

Thank you, Dong Nguyen, for doing what we never could, and saving us from the “Flappy” phenomenon.