A few mornings ago, as I awoke to my near daily yearning for ANGRY BIRDS, I found myself wondering why there wasn’t a multiplayer version of the game. You see, a few days prior to that, I had downloaded Words with Friends (find me: username is billrusnak) and was also quickly becoming addicted to the turn based experience that had me squaring off against a friend or a complete stranger. I wondered why Rovio, who is riding a tidal wave of notoriety and popularity right now with ANGRY BIRDS, had not yet released a multiplayer version…
So I did a quick Google search and it turns out that obviously, they’ve already begun thinking of a multiplayer version. As well as a movie, a tv show and every single other possible franchise tie-in they can think of.
Here is what Rovio CEO Peter Vesterbacka said about multiplayer [via PocketGamer's coverage of the UK's Social Gaming Summit]:
the forthcoming Angry Birds multiplayer will resemble ‘old school Worms’, though the details still haven’t been hammered out.
He also made reference to a possible spin-off for the game:
rules out Angry Birds 2 but hints that a future ‘surprise’ iteration of the game will tell the story from the pigs’ point of view. He also reveals that Angry Birds will be coming to PSN, Wii, and Xbox ‘for starters.’
Since the Rovio team has yet to ‘hammer out’ all of the ANGRY BIRDS multiplayer details, I throw my 2 cents into the ring…
Peter Vesterbacka and the Rovio team, a few features to consider for ANGRY BIRDS multiplayer:
- Turn based play in real time. Vesterbacka has already said that they are looking to mimic the ‘old school Worms’ games for the multiplayer experience. I think the important thing to point out is that ‘team ups’ should not be part of the offering. The addictive nature of ANGRY BIRDS has everything to do with the ‘I ALMOST GOT IT…..!!!’ nature of the game. Choosing your opponent and seeing them ‘almost do it.’…but not quite, will be half the fun. After your turn, on your screen, you should get to watch your opponent play through. This way, players will get to watch their opponents fail. On the flip side, it’ll also help weaker players by watching successful moves.
- Scoring. Players should be able to choose either a single level they want to compete on or a full series of levels. The goal would be to have the highest aggregated score after x levels. If two people are playing the same level and one completes the level and the other does not, the player that finished the level gets their points. The other player gets 0. If both players successfully complete the level, they move on with their points. For each level, regardless of how many birds it takes one player to complete the level, all players get the same number of total birds in a level to complete it.
- Chat. Should be a requirement. Venting frustration and sharing strategies should prove to be as fun as playing the actual game.
- Facebook and Twitter integration. One of my main frustrations with Words with Friends is that the only way I can find friends to play against is if I know their usernames. I can share through Facebook and Twitter a shout-out to all my friends that I’m playing WwF and that my username is billrusnak but they need to seek me out. A full Facebook and Twitter integration that allows me to connect, from the game, and find a list of friends that also play the game is key. This way I’ll be able to invite friends to a game directly. I should also be able to see which of my friends are playing the game at the same time I am so that I can request matches with them in real time. The ability to play against strangers should also be available.
- Social sharing of scores. If I choose to share my high score on Twitter or Facebook, I should have the capability to do so.
- A global leaderboard. There needs to be a global leaderboad available. The leaderboard should be for the game overall and on a per level basis.
Since launching on December 10th, 2009 in Apple’s App Store, there have been 12 million plus downloads of ANGRY BIRDS for Apple devices and a total of 50 million downloads across all platforms that host a version of the game. The moment that Rovio permits users to play against each other and charges them to be able to do so, ANGRY BIRDS is going to explode….Again.
I say it’s time we see some multiplayer action!
What do you think? Is there anything else you would want to see in an ANGRY BIRDS multiplayer experience?
Leave your comments below or find me on Twitter!