Tetris Company manager Angry Birds is a fad

first_imgAngry Birds is a fad and won’t have the staying power of Tetris, according to The Tetris Company managing director Henk Rogers.Rogers, in a recent interview, compares the booming success of the smartphone game to the long-running popularity of the puzzle franchise. Rovio, the developer of Angry Birds, gets 40% of its revenue from merchandising: not the game itself, but the plush birds and t-shirts on retail shelves. Rogers highlights Tetris‘ different approach in response, saying merchandising is “more decorative than functional.” In short, The Tetris Company prefers to make games, not consumer products like merchandise.There’s one more reason for the different business model: Tetris can’t compete. “Any time you have a character,” Rogers begins, that’s how one can get into the merchandise business. Tetris doesn’t have characters, so no plush toys any time soon. On the other hand, according to Rogers, games that have characters as their central theme “become popular and then go away.” Angry Birds players get burned out and move on to another game, he claims.Rogers makes the argument that Tetris is perennial, but does so in several odd ways. It’s like golf, he claims. It’s like the Happy Birthday song. You see Tetris blocks in the real world. Video games are the mental fitness equivalent of running a marathon, he says.Returning somewhat to reality, Rogers points out that the Tetris brand is strong enough to not need concerted marketing efforts just to sell the game. New Tetris releases on the App Store rise to the top spots despite low marketing spending. Core fans spread the game virally to much success.Then it’s back to crazy talk. “We have an unfair advantage” when it comes to the Tetris brand, he quips. The game is like a virus, and there is no cure. People want to keep “catch[ing] the bug.”While Rogers’ statements are obviously hyperbolic marketing-speak, we do agree on one point: the game is a fad.via IndustryGamerslast_img

first_imgAngry Birds is a fad and won’t have the staying power of Tetris, according to The Tetris Company managing director Henk Rogers.Rogers, in a recent interview, compares the booming success of the smartphone game to the long-running popularity of the puzzle franchise. Rovio, the developer of Angry Birds, gets 40% of its revenue from merchandising: not the game itself, but the plush birds and t-shirts on retail shelves. Rogers highlights Tetris‘ different approach in response, saying merchandising is “more decorative than functional.” In short, The Tetris Company prefers to make games, not consumer products like merchandise.There’s one more reason for the different business model: Tetris can’t compete. “Any time you have a character,” Rogers begins, that’s how one can get into the merchandise business. Tetris doesn’t have characters, so no plush toys any time soon. On the other hand, according to Rogers, games that have characters as their central theme “become popular and then go away.” Angry Birds players get burned out and move on to another game, he claims.Rogers makes the argument that Tetris is perennial, but does so in several odd ways. It’s like golf, he claims. It’s like the Happy Birthday song. You see Tetris blocks in the real world. Video games are the mental fitness equivalent of running a marathon, he says.Returning somewhat to reality, Rogers points out that the Tetris brand is strong enough to not need concerted marketing efforts just to sell the game. New Tetris releases on the App Store rise to the top spots despite low marketing spending. Core fans spread the game virally to much success.Then it’s back to crazy talk. “We have an unfair advantage” when it comes to the Tetris brand, he quips. The game is like a virus, and there is no cure. People want to keep “catch[ing] the bug.”While Rogers’ statements are obviously hyperbolic marketing-speak, we do agree on one point: the game is a fad.via IndustryGamerslast_img

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