The original Angry Birds took flight on Android way, way back in 2010. It was followed by a number of spin-offs and expansions, but now the true sequel has arrived. You can tell by the name—Angry Birds 2. Rovio (and the market for mobile games in general) has changed dramatically in the years since the first game was released, so you can probably guess what that means.
Despite a fall from grace after numerous ill-advised cash-ins, Rovio's Angry Birds series remains synonymous with blockbusting success in mobile gaming. The franchise has had no less than fourteen official entries since its inception in 2009, including licensed versions for Transformers, Rio, and Star Wars, spin-offs starring the antagonist pigs and the Pink Bird Stella, and an utter embarrassment of a match-three game.
Angry Birds games have a long and complicated history. The original was a huge hit, but each successive attempt felt less interesting. The few times Rovio has branched out have been... not awesome. Angry Birds Transformers, however, is unexpectedly entertaining.
Many moons ago, a plucky little game company named Rovio decided that a hungry wolf wasn't the only thing that could blow down the homes of snarky pigs — airborne fowl would also join in the on destruction. In subsequent lunar cycles, those homicidal kamikaze birds would continue to bring their particular breed of catastrophe down upon on the poor, defenseless porkbellies; and in turn, generate many money-dollars for the twisted jerks that inspired them.
Rovio has caught on to the slight possibility that this many years after the release of the original Angry Birds, some of you may have potentially (if only ever so slightly) grown bored with the concept of slinging the same ol' birds at the same ol' pigs. The company has since experimented with other game concepts, but at the end of the day, you have to stick with what pays the bills.
Who's ready for a new Angry Birds game? If you're not, you might just want to ignore the gaming news for the next month or so. After a tepid critical response from kart racer Angry Birds Go, the next entry in the series was revealed as a short social post leading to a small sub-site of AngryBirds.com.
Rovio's newest game is about what the Finnish developer knows best – birds. Though, they seem decidedly less angry this time in their little downhill race carts. Like it or not, this game is going to be huge.
Angry Birds Go is Rovio's first major free-to-play game on Android, so expect to be hit up for cash on occasion (maybe a lot of it).
The Angry Birds franchise has thus far been on the lighter side of the free-to-play model - the original game launched free and ad-supported on Android, and later versions added small charges for HD versions and a few in-app bonuses like the Mighty Eagle. But it looks like Rovio is pulling out all the stops when it comes to the upcoming kart racer, Angry Birds Go.
There comes a point in the life of every great gaming franchise where all original gameplay ideas have been exhausted. And right after that point, the developers give up and make a kart racer. For Rovio's omnipresent Angry Birds, the game is Angry Birds Go, a racing game that travels down the same well-trodden path as Mario Kart and a million also-rans.