Rovio pulling Angry Birds or renaming it on app stores

Rovio pulling Angry Birds or renaming it on app stores

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In an interesting announcement today, game developer Rovio shared that it’s renaming and/or pulling its Rovio Classics: Angry Birds on the App Store and Google Play Store. According to the company, the original title is hurting the viability of Angry Birds 2 and the other modern Angry Birds releases. Fortunately, it looks like the Apple Arcade version is safe for the time being.

Why is Rovio renaming/pulling Angry Birds Classics?

Rovio shared two paragraphs on Twitter about the change to push players toward Angry Birds 2, Angry Birds Friends, and Angry Birds Journey, etc.:

We have reviewed the business case of Rovio Classics: Angry Birds, and due to the game’s impact on our wider games portfolio, we have decided that Rovio Classics: Angry Birds will be unlisted from the Google Play Store on Thursday, February 23. Additionally, the game will be renamed to Red’s First Flight in the App Store pending further review. Rovio Classics: Angry Birds will remain playable on devices on which the game has been downloaded, even after it has been unlisted.

We understand that this is sad news for many fans, as well as the team that has worked hard to make Rovio Classics: Angry Birds a reality. We are extremely grateful to the Angry Birds fans who have shown their love of the brand and this game from the beginning. We hope those fans can continue to bring that passion to our live Angry Birds slingshot games such as Angry Birds 2, Angry Birds Friends, and Angry Birds Journey, where our goal every day is to craft the best possible experience for players.

9to5Mac’s Take

Interestingly, while the Android version of Rovio Classics Angry Birds is definitely going away on 2/23/23, the iOS version is a bit more up in the air with a rename to “Red’s First Flight” possibly coming soon. That’s presumably to prevent it from showing up when players search for Angry Birds and compete with Angry Birds 2 and the other recent releases.

It’s a bummer to see Rovio is pulling its original hit game for Android and will make it harder to find for iOS users with these changes.

From what it sounds like, more (or enough) people may be playing the classic which does not have in-app purchases like Angry Birds 2, Journey, Blast, and Friends. That’s the most likely factor hurting the “business case” for Rovio’s apps going forward.

Interestingly, the classic reimagined is still available on Apple Arcade, that version is called Angry Birds Reloaded with no ads or in-app purchases. Hopefully, that will remain safe in the future. And for those that still have the original installed, at least Rovio shared that will remain playable.

Time will tell if the move will see a lasting backlash from players or if it’s the right call from Rovio to keep its ship running smoothly. What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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