March 27, 2012
Ten Million Angry Birds!
Brett Smith For RedOrbit.com
After flinging onto the pop culture landscape in 2009, Rovio's Angry Birds are now going where no digital avian has gone before. Rovio´s “Angry Birds Space” game was downloaded over 10 million times during the first three days of its release, according to a tweet from the entertainment media company.The Finnish company began stepping up promotion for the new game back in February by releasing a teaser trailer that simply displayed the game´s title, release date, and the phrases “It´s one small fling for a bird” and “One quantum leap for birdkind.”
That was followed by another promotional video, produced in conjunction with NASA that featured astronaut Don Petit aboard the International Space Station. In the video, Petit describes how the gravity of planetary bodies affects objects in space and how this would relate to the upcoming Angry Birds game.
Unlike previous sequels, “Space” features a completely different physical environment for the feathery projectiles to inhabit, including zero gravity spaces, slow-motion action, and “light-speed destruction.” The newest game introduces new birds to returning players as well as changes to old favorites.
According to some feedback via the official Angry Birds Twitter feed, some players have been experiencing problems with the new game. One person reported a problem with the game crashing on his fourth generation iPod Touch device. Another reported that the game´s Space Eagle feature caused his iPhone to crash.
The newest edition of the Angry Birds franchise is well on its way to matching the success of previous games, which have collectively managed to accumulate half a billion downloads. “Space” is currently available for iOS, Andriod, Mac, and PC platforms and the Finnish company is working toward making it available for the Windows Phone 7 platform that runs mobile devices such as the Samsung Focus and HTC Titan.
"We are working towards getting Angry Birds Space to WP7," Rovio CEO Mikael Hed told Reuters.
Rovio also has coordinated the release of “Space” with the debut of other Angry Birds merchandise including toys, books, and T-shirts. It´s all a part of the company´s plan to make the franchise a broader entertainment brand, according to Peter Vesterbacka, Rovio´s chief marketing officer.
"We want to make Angry Birds a permanent part of pop culture," Vesterbacka said in a press conference at the Finnish embassy in London. “We're just getting started."
As a part of this endeavor, Rovio has teamed with Finnish playground equipment maker Lappset for the construction of themed activity play areas. The parks will feature spring rides, swings, sandpits and a range of climbing towers with slides, all bearing the Angry Birds motif.
The play areas will also integrate with the mobile game by granting visitors new game features and rewards. Vesterbacka said this augmented reality is intended to encourage physical activity for game players.
“There will also be local leader boards so there will be a real incentive to go to the park and exercise,” he said. “Modern mobile phones have many sensors so the more activity a person does, the more they will be rewarded.”
The first Angry Birds park will open at the end of April at the Sarkanniemi Amusement Park in Finland.