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. Yes, lots of in-app purchases. Sorry, guys.
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. Now, for the very first time, Angry Birds is getting its first direct and complete sequel.
With 3 billion game downloads, millions of fans across the globe, multiple mashups and spin-offs, collaborations with A-list celebrities and much more, we’re really proud that Angry Birds is the mother of all mobile game apps.
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. The loathsome avians are back to carry out more dastardly plots in Angry Birds Stella.
Angry Birds Stella takes us on a journey through Golden Island as we strive to rid it of the green pig-folk.
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. So instead of taking a chance on creating an impressive, turn-based adventure through a beautifully animated world - actually, that's precisely what they've done with Angry Birds Epic, it just happens to center around those same ol' limbless birds.
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. The title will be Angry Birds Stella.
According to the Angry Birds Wiki (of course there's an Angry Birds Wiki), 'Stella' is the name of the Pink Bird whose only real job before now was playing Princess Leia in Angry Birds Star Wars.
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). This is a casual racing game built around a variety of quirky downhill tracks. The birds we know so well from the original games are here with hastily assembled vehicles and special powers that harken back to their physics puzzler roots.
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. Pocket Gamer reports that gamers in New Zealand (where the game is getting an early launch on iOS) are finding it positively stuffed with in-app purchases.
The game apparently includes just about every kind of IAP scheme you can think of.
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. It comes out December 11th.
As cynical as that opening statement is, I have to admit that Angry Birds Go looks like a pretty amazing kart racer. First of all, it's a full 3D game - the first in Rovio's history, as far as I know.