‘Flappy Bird’ Might Come Back, Says Creator

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Hanoi-based app designer Dong Nguyen only wanted to make a simple mobile game, one that would afford some folks a few minutes of precious distraction while commuting or “working.”

But the game he created, “Flappy Bird,” became an epic viral hit within eight months of its May 2013 release, racking up millions of downloads and earning Nguyen as much as $50,000 per day in ad revenue. For most people, that would have been a happy ending—but not for Nguyen, who announced in early February that he would pull “Flappy Bird” from online stores. “I am sorry ‘Flappy Bird’ users,” read his explanatory Tweet. “22 hours from now, I will take ‘Flappy Bird’ down. I cannot take this anymore.”

A Rolling Stone reporter found Nguyen a few weeks later, doing his best to live a quiet life despite the newfound fame. “I’m master of my own fate,” he said about his decision to shut down the game. “Independent thinker.” Whereas most people might use their newfound wealth to fuel a life of total debauchery, Nguyen hasn’t changed many details of his existence, aside from considering whether to buy a car and an apartment. He has new games in development; and he’s pondering whether to re-release ‘Flappy Bird.’

In the meantime, those who need their ‘Flappy Bird’ fix can find dozens of clones in the Apple and Google app stores. Anyone who wants to see how Nguyen coded his little blockbuster can head over to Code.org, which resurrected ‘Flappy Bird’ as a tutorial that allows a visitor to code his or her very own version of the game. (For those who aren’t programmers, there’s no actual code to learn, thanks to a visual interface that allows budding developers to drag “blocks” of commands into place.)


Image: Dong Nguyen