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Apple and Google reject titles similar to Flappy Bird

Apple and Google reject titles similar to Flappy Bird

Mon 17 Feb 2014 11:39am GMT / 6:39am EST / 3:39am PST
PublishingDevelopment

Mobile devs complain of rejection for including "flappy" in game titles

Flappy Bird may no longer be available to download, but its enduring appeal has proved difficult for mobile developers to resist - and now Google and Apple have started to reject games with similar titles.

At the time of writing, four of the top ten most downloaded free apps on the App Store are directly inspired by Flappy Bird's success - SplashyFish, Ironpants and City Bird comprise the top three. However, a number of developers have complained that their games have been rejected in what appears to be an attempt to stem the flow of copycat titles.

A tweet from Mind Juice Media - sourced by Techcrunch - complained that its game, Flappy Dragon, had been rejected on the grounds that its name, "attempts to leverage a popular app."

"Which app?" Ken Carpenter, CEO of Mind Juice, complained. "[Flappy Bird] doesn't exist!?!?!"

Another developer, Mad Garden, had a game called FlapThulhu: Flappy Madness rejected and, in a response to Mad Garden's tweet, Kuyi Mobile indicated that it knew of at least three other developers that had suffered the same treatment. Both Mind Juice and Kuyi also claimed that developers were being rejected by Google Play for similar reasons.

While neither Apple nor Google has not publicly stated their positions, the rejections are inconsistent. A host of games with "flappy" in their title, or which are clearly based on Flappy Bird's unforgiving design, were available to download on both the App Store and Google Play at the time of writing.

This is just the latest twist in the ongoing saga of Flappy Bird, an otherwise obscure game from a solo Vietnamese developer that rose to the very top of the mobile world, apparently on word-of-mouth alone. However, despite earning somewhere in the region of $50,000 a day in ad revenue, Dong Nguyen, the game's creator, withdrew it from sale.

"I cannot take this any more," he said in a tweet last week.

A few days later, Nguyen told Forbes that his decision to withdraw the game was down to the public reaction to the game - both the abuse he received, and the compulsive behaviour it created in its players.

"Flappy Bird was designed to play in a few minutes when you are relaxed," he said. "But it happened to become an addictive product. I think it has become a problem. To solve that problem, it's best to take down Flappy Bird. It's gone forever."

8 Comments

John Byrd
Principal

10 17 1.7
Popular Comment
If your business model is predicated on copying Flappy Bird, and you're bent out of shape that you can't, you may wish to rethink your business model.

Posted:2 months ago

#1

Greg Wilcox
Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

1,993 902 0.5
Make better games and stop bitching when they get taken down for trying to be like one that wasn't that original in the first place, I say. Or just call it a lazy Monday with "Happy Bird"... the EASIEST game ever. One screen walking dodo bird toddling to the exit. WIN. Make it two screens in the next stage, rinse and repeat. Put up a pay wall at level 10 if you like and see if people bite.

You're welcome.

Posted:2 months ago

#2

Steven Hodgson
Programmer

77 111 1.4
Just call your game the helicopter game, thats all flappy bird is

Posted:2 months ago

#3

Dan Wood
Visual Effects Artist

27 46 1.7
While I have no sympathy with regards to this particular story, I just wanted to mention a genuinely hilarious "shameless cash-in":
http://corpsmoderne.itch.io/flappy-space-program

Alas, even that guy appears to have been forced to change his graphics to comply with copyright since yesterday. It's still an amusing homage, with a genuinely interesting twist :-)

Posted:2 months ago

#4

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

767 999 1.3
So they're complaining about having their copycat games being rejected from sale? Thats original....you see what I did there.

Posted:2 months ago

#5

Alfonso Sexto
Lead Tester

714 495 0.7
There, run for the money you greedy bunch...

"Consoles are killing creativity" said somebody we know from this forum. I'm still waiting to see this happen on consoles and/or STEAM.

Posted:2 months ago

#6

Craig Page
Programmer

381 216 0.6
Just downloaded Flappy Dino, and this Helicopter Game on the Android store...

They don't seem to have rejected any Flappy games, there's like 100,000,000 search results for Flappy (give or take a few).

Posted:2 months ago

#7

John Arnold
Partner

30 36 1.2
I wouldn't so much call them "Copycats" or "Inspired". They're shameful parasites that make money feeding off other people's creativity. The fact a lot of them are badly controlled and filled with constant advertisements proves their greed. Ultimately the developer should have patented his property better, which is hard considering he used classic Nintendo graphic art. I don't blame him for feeling overwhelmed and unprepared of the whole management he would be involved in.

Posted:A month ago

#8

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