Why is angry birds so popular

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Most people don't know why they do what they do

Why is angry birds extremely popular?
Why did millions of people download this simple game and even paid for its full version?

When i asked my friends on Facebook why did they like angry birds most of them said things such as "to let time pass", "because its simple" or "to free my mind". And while these answers weren't incorrect still they were answering a totally different question which is "why do you play games"

The question that needs answer is, why did you pick angry birds to let time pass instead of the hundreds of other games?

Many psychologists said that angry birds is a simple game and that's one reason it became popular but this is still a very lame answer. There are thousands of simple games out there, why did people choose that simple game specifically and even paid money for it even though there are thousands of other simple games around?

Before i tell you the answer there is one thing you need to understand about human behaviour. Most people don't know why they do what they do. They just believe they are playing games to kill time or because they are bored but in fact some games help people adjust their moods in such a way that they become addicted to them.

Why is angry birds so popular?

The first instance you see the green pigs in the angry birds game you become frustrated by their unpleasant looks. Add to this their annoying sounds which keep reminding you of the fact that they still exist.

Now when you aim at those pigs with your angry birds and hit one of them they don't just disappear but they explode providing you with a great relief. You just got rid of that annoying very pig! what a relief!

If you failed to kill all the pigs in three attempts a big picture of a Pig shows up in the screen and sounds similar to human laughter are played. This frustrates you even more and make you feel like tearing those pigs down to pieces.

The main factor that made angry birds successful is that it first frustrates you with extremely annoying creatures then shows you that there is a quick way to get a relief (by attacking them with your angry birds).

A subtle way to release aggression

There are so many sick games out there involving killing people, tearing them to pieces or even torturing them. Those games only appeal to the people who are truly aggressive or even the mentally unstable ones.

But what about the feelings of aggression that all normal people experience? How can it be released?
Angry birds allows people to release their aggression in a guilt free environment. The cartoon looks of the evil characters doesn't make the typical person feel guilty for killing them or even letting them explode.

Because the graphics, characters and the game environment were designed in a way similar to cartoons people can release their aggression through angry birds without actually noticing that they are doing so or feeling bad about it.

Now bring any normal person a similar game that has clear evidence of aggression release (such as killing zombies) and you will find that it appeals to a fewer number of people provided that all other factors are constant.

Certain games don't become popular because they are simple or because we sometimes feel bored but they become popular when they help us feel better.

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