Flappy Bird’s Creator Says He’s Taking The Game Down

Flappy Bird’s Creator Says He’s Taking The Game Down

The creator of Flappy Bird, the difficult, barebones mobile game whose mere existence roiled video games discussion over the past two weeks, says he will remove the game from the Android and iTunes marketplaces within 22 hours. “I cannot take this anymore,” he tweeted today.

I am sorry ‘Flappy Bird’ users, 22 hours from now, I will take ‘Flappy Bird’ down. I cannot take this anymore.

Nguyen added:

It is not anything related to legal issues. I just cannot keep it anymore.

Earlier this week, Nguyen pleaded over Twitter for everyone to “please give me peace”, saying the notoriety over creating the game is “something I never want”.

Flappy Bird is currently hosted on the iTunes Store and at Google Play. The game is free and supported by advertisements. It was released in May of last year and later became the most popular app downloaded on iTunes for some time. It shot to mainstream notoriety only recently, thanks largely to articles like this one from BuzzFeed. It has skyrocketed into mainstream awareness since then and is said to earn its creator tens of thousands of dollars a day.

Inside the video gaming community though, Flappy Bird and its seemingly inscrutable appeal has been the subject of intense debate over the past couple of weeks, criticising everything from its game design, to its intended audience, to the origin of its visual style.


  • I’ll repost what I put on my FB wall about this:

    “For the love of science, this is why we can’t have nice things. Our vocal minority are so vile, so bottom-of-the-barrel scum that they have to resort to making a person feel so scared they have to stop selling something that is *drumroll* entirely harmless to everyone. It’s not like it’s being *ist; he didn’t personally walk in to every publisher and tell them ‘this is what the next AAA title will be’; he just made a game that went viral.

    And these same people wonder why society thinks gamers are just giant children.”

    • The worst part about this is you know given the mobile market that as soon as he takes the game down, some unscrupulous person is going to put up a near to as doesn’t matter clone of the game and make a lot of money.

    • The Flappy Bird game is a ripoff through and through, the game mechanics are copied from Piou Piou vs Cactus and the art assets are very similar to that of Mario. Nothing is original.

      harmless to everyone
      No not quite, games like this make people believe that they can just copy someone’s idea and make big bucks off it, I mean hell there’s already what? 5+ copies of Flappy Bird which is a copy of Piou Piou quite frankly this trend is a blight on the games industry and if it continues we’ll have thousands of copies of the same damn game, How boring.

      But yeah I definitely agree people who took to Twitter to abuse this guy were very much in the wrong.

      And finally I’ll post what fellow Kotaku’ers (is that right?) posted the other day on this article:

      An article about the comparison between Flappy and Piou Piou:

      Piou Piou vs Cactus on the play store:

      And Play Piou Piou yourself and see the comparison:

      • Ripoff? Then why didn’t Piou Piou and the clones of Piou Piou/flappy bird gain as much popular as this game?

        App store are full of copy ideas and game concepts, it doesn’t matter if the app you make isn’t original, what matter is how the app/game can bring the best out of its ideas, features.

        • Ripoff? Then why didn’t Piou Piou and the clones of Piou Piou/flappy bird gain as much [popularity] as this game?

          Who knows? It’s just one of those popularity anomalies that happen time to time. Flappy Bird came out last year some time, but it didn’t hit a popularity spike until January/February, pretty hard to measure things like that.

          App store are full of copy ideas and game concepts

          Yeah I totally agree, there are already too many game ripoffs on the app stores. But my point is that the more copies there are the worse off the game industry will be for it. Don’t get me wrong I know why games get ripped off, it’s because it is a safe bet, first off you already have the game idea and you have the pre-existing knowledge that the game was once successful. What sucks is that as long as a game is not a direct copy of assets/textures from another game, you are free to do what you want with a game.

    • Well I do still that the original flappy birds on my phone even though it’s now been taken down for anyone else I would like to know what the Horst score for flappy birds is 🙂 I love this game so much it’s additive.

  • I feel for him. The way the internet has exploded and criticised Nguyen and his game has been ridiculous.

  • What an idiot. He is making $50,000 a day and is taking it down because some idiots say something bad about him on the internet.

    • If he’s making $50k a day and it’s been up for 8 months he probably has enough money to retire fairly comfortably. At that rate a single month will net him over a million dollars.

      Plus he’ll still be getting ad revenue from those people who installed it early and didn’t remove it after it was pulled from the app store.

      • I doubt it has been making 50k since day 1, but he does live in Vietnam so he probably does have more than enough to retire.

        @grayda I don’t know. I would gladly take $50k a day in return for verbal abuse on the internet. I just wouldn’t go on the internet. The majority are just jealous kids and all he has to do is hold out until the next “controversy” so the kids will just move on to that.

    • Money doesn’t negate verbal abuse. If he’s getting attacked by the internet for making this game, then perhaps $50,000 a day isn’t worth it.

      • That’s the stupidest thing I’ve heard all day. $50k a day for abuse is well worth it. It’s not like there’s a mob at his door now is it? He can still go out in public without being harassed can’t he?

        • Stupidest thing i’ve heard all day is someone so immature he can’t understand why another human being wouldn’t want what he wants.

          • He made alot of money, there is an old saying, can’t stand the heat, then get out of the kitchen. You make a game you are put into the spotlight. This guy reminds me of Phil Fish, taking his ball and going home. Is it wrong people hate him, not entirely mobile games are a blight on console/PC gaming.

        • that is not true, sometimes mentality well being is far more worth than the $50k a day. He will soon be hit by tax department for tax evading and lot of other troubles from making “too much” money in Vietnam. The thing he shouldn’t do was telling how much he is making.

          • The tax department is going to notice the thousands of dollars going into his bank account anyway, so even if he doesn’t mention it to people, they are still going to find out. And he isn’t tax evading if he is paying taxes either, the article mentions how much money he earns, it doesn’t mention anything to do with not paying his taxes.

        • If $50,000 a day meant I couldn’t use the internet without having someone direct abuse at me (even if I closed all of my accounts and opened new ones — the internet has a way of finding new accounts and letting everyone know), then no, $50k a day to have strangers threaten to kill me or call me a fag or telling me to go die because of something they read on another site is not enough to warrant that kind of abuse.

          Sure he may be able to go outside, but for someone who makes a living off the internet, it’s not very comforting.

      • I dunno. I get verbally abused for my actual job, and I make approx 50k in a year. I’d take the 50k per day and just ignore the assholes.

        • It’s different when you work for a company, as you can shrug it off as a problem the customer is having with the company, with the way you were instructed to do your job, or if it’s genuinely your fault, something you can change for next time.

          But when you’ve done nothing wrong (depends on if you consider being inspired by Mario / Piou Piou as doing nothing wrong) and you get abused, that’s different. Like bullying at school. You didn’t pee your pants, so why do the kids keep calling you names and spreading rumours that you did?

          Of course, the developer of the game hasn’t stated that abuse is the reason why he’s giving up the game (too many requests for media appearances, was what I heard), but to me, getting abused for merely making a game that took off, is no reason to say “Here, money makes everything better”

    • What did he steal? Even Kotaku’s own article shows that while his designs were, heavily inspired by Mario art styles, he didn’t directly rip sprites. If we’re going to condemn that as stealing, then half the freakin’ indie sector is guilty.

    • Stolen and inspired by are two different things. Saying he ripped or stole assets implies he physically took them from another source.

      And where is everyone getting upset at the leprechaun game that is an exact clone of Super Mario Bros? They are up to their second game and have pipes, coins, breakable blocks and flags at the end of lvls.
      Where is the outrage at the thousands of free and paid games that use actual physically ripped assets from Minecraft? Or the ones that use Mii assets?

      No? We aren’t bothering with that lot who actually make cash from stealing? We instead concentrate on someone who used inspired self made assets? That makes sense, ignore the serious infractions and go after a game that has a green pipe, a bird with lips slightly like another non bird type enemy and gameplay that is nothing like the game it “stole” from.

      What does reddit say I have to care about today!!!!

      • That makes sense, ignore the serious infractions and go after a game that has a green pipe, a bird with lips slightly like another non bird type enemy and gameplay that is nothing like the game it “stole” from
        Except the gameplay and level design was stole from Piou Piou and then just replaced with art assets from other games.

        • No. Flappy Bird didn’t steal level design from Piou Piou vs Cactus. Nor did it replace Piou Piou’s art assets from other games.

          Here’s Piou Piou’s gameplay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpxmqejpR0Q
          And here’s Schreier’s art assets comparison: http://www.kotaku.com.au/2014/02/flappy-bird-is-making-50000-a-day-off-ripped-art/

          Flappy Bird is similar in gameplay with Piou Piou. But it didn’t steal it’s level design. Flappy Bird has similar art assets to other games. But it didn’t replace Piou Piou’s art assets from other games.

          If you’re going to adopt that mentality, then you’ll need to accept that all 3d first-person shooters are stolen from Id’s Castle Wolfenstein, Doom and Quake games. (Are there any 3d-forced-first-person-perspective games that use the mouse or other control to change the view before those three games?)

          If you’re going to accuse someone of theft, make sure that they are actually a thief.

          • Both these games are simple ripoffs off a little flash helicopter game that came out years ago. Was a tutorial in a book

          • Like I said, if you’re going to use that mentality then you’ll need to accept that all 3d-shooters are rip-offs of id’s games.

  • Not only ridiculous but also simply wrong.

    When I first read that Buzz Feed article, I did think that Flappy Bird was using assets from other games. But after seeing the screenshots in Schreier’s “Flappy Bird Is Making $50,000 A Day Off Ripped Art” article, I changed my mind. I also just noticed that the title of that article is simply wrong and libelous. It should be edited with an editorial note.

    By the way, my record in Flappy Bird is 26.

  • It’s not like it’ll be deleted from everyones devices though. He’ll continue to earn revenue from ads (which he deserves)

    It may even backfire and make it all the more popular 😛

  • Yeah I feel sorry for the guy. never played the game myself, but he DID just make a little game and it somehow took off. It’s not what he expected or wants, yet people still abuse him for his success.

  • Let’s just back up a second here:

    Where is there any proof that the reason why he’s taking it down due to online abuse???

    Judging by this tweet, it looks like a simple case of him not being able to deal with all the media attention it’s been getting:


    Which is understandable – he’s just trying to do his own thing (he’s apparently working on another game at the moment), when suddenly a game that he released over 6 months ago has suddenly had a surge in popularity and now he’s getting all this unwanted media attention.

    Not everything online is linked to abuse

    • Interesting point – I haven’t really been following it that much but didn’t think id seen anything about abuse.

  • $50k a day purely from ad revenue seems a bit odd, maybe it’s 50k Vietnamese Dong a day which is only about $2.60 which seems a more realistic figure but I cannot imagine just pure ad revenue being that high a figure after Apple take their cut.

    It’s a real shame, Flappy Bird is an awesome game, i do not care at what anyone on the internet says. Yeah it might be inspired by other games but what about Candy Crush Saga being a copy of Bejewled and Leps World and numerous similar games being carbon copies of Mario Bros but no one seems to be complaining but someone is inspired by an obscure game literally no one has even heard of and every has seems to have lost their minds.

    As someone has said before, this is why we cannot have nice things.

    • I agree. I’ve read the criticism from people about Flappy Bird, and while I’ve yet to give it a go myself I still don’t think this guy deserves so much hate, especially when there are even worse games out there. Why isn’t the same amount of hate being leveled at things like Candy Crush Saga? It’s far worse than what I’ve seen of this, imo. As mentioned in the comment above, it’s a rip off of Bejewled, and not only that but it shamelessly tries to rip off the player by making things so difficult that (depending on your skill level and patience) you’re essentially forced into micro-transactions in order to continue (good games should reward skill and patience, not punish it).

      • “Why isn’t the same amount of hate being leveled at things like Candy Crush Saga?”

        Last time I checked, the hate I’ve seen for Candy Crush comes fairly close, but that seems to be more for the Facebook spamming and micro-transaction crap rather than the plagiarism (and to be fair, Bejeweled was far from the first “match three gems to make them disappear” game – did anything pre-date Columns?).

    • The game has been downloaded over 50 million times, he’d definitely be making 50k USD a day. The game hits you with 2 iad impressions every few seconds.

  • well the easier option would be to just delete your twitter account and switch off and just sit back and collect your $50k a day…

  • I’m not sure that the gameplay ripoff of Piou Piou really rings true. There’s been nigh on identical games circulating literally for decades.

    Aesthetically, its fairly evident that Flappy Bird takes some inspiration from Piou Piou, but not to the point where one can actually start calling plagiarism on it.

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