Yes, Flappy Bird is difficult. It can take multiple attempts to get a score higher than one; anything over 10 marks you as a flapping genius.
The game’s maker, Dong Nguyen, withdrew Flappy Bird from the App Store over the weekend because he could not handle the stress or attention of being the No.1 most downloaded game on iPhone.
But why is the game — in which you have to guide a small yellow bird between gaps in a set of green pipes — so confoundingly impossible to master, even when it seems so simple?
Turns out, it’s a deliberate choice by Nguyen, according to this interview with ITA, an app trade publication. Nguyen didn’t want to make new, extra levels of gameplay for players who advance quickly because his day job didn’t give him enough time:
I think it is getting harder these days to make a living off the App Store but there is still a chance. Take me as an example. Having a day job and not much time to develop, I had to make a game that was really short and simple. I also had to make the game very difficult to increase its lifespan because I don’t have the resources to create ongoing content like the big game companies. If my games fail, I am still fine because I have a good day job. The hardest part is you have to make something different to make any sense. I’m trying to make something different.
Of course, this doesn’t answer the question of why a man would prefer his day job over the $50,000 in revenue per day the game was reportedly making.
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