A few weeks ago we shared our idea to do an exclusive community based Q&A email interview with various Android developers. This is our first official post in the series, and our first interview is with the famous developer of 'Angry Birds', Rovio!
As a reminder, the unique angle of this interview is that your editorial staff did not come up with the questions. The questions came from you and your fellow forum members in the Droid Forums community. Afterwards, please comment on if you like the idea of this series, and if you do, which Developer you would like to hear from next! Thanks for participating, and here is the interview with the answers in bold:1. Will they ever have cloud based game progress storage?
We’re currently working on it, and we’ll have more information available on our website once the project is further along.
2. How long was the process of building the first Birds app, from story board > physics > graphics, etc., and how much shorter has it gotten now that they're on the third installment?
Angry Birds was first pitched as a concept – a mockup of the birds, without fully developed idea of the gameplay – in March of 2009, and the final product reached the App Store in December. The development time is much shorter now that we have more employees and resources and are building on the already existing game infrastructure.
3. Will they make another game/app outside of the series? ie, will they make another app not based on birds that are angry?
Rovio developed 51 titles prior to Angry Birds, but none of them generated the overwhelmingly positive response that Angry Birds has received. Having created a detailed universe with such a dedicated fan following, Rovio currently plans on expanding within this universe by maintaining the characters while delivering innovative new gameplay and storylines.
4. Is there going to be 3D angry birds for 3D capable devices?
We plan to be on every platform at some point, so probably yes when there are more 3D capable devices in the market.
5. Is the original Angry Birds going to continue to be updated? It seems like Seasons and Rio have been getting all of the attention.
Yes, it’s still being updated. We actually just had a new update come out.
6. What is the size of the entire staff at Rovio, and where are they based out of?
With the recent acquisition of Kombo, Rovio currently has more than 100 employees and is expanding rapidly. Rovio is based in Espoo, Finland, a city about 20 km away from Helsinki.
7. I have heard of some development issues/criticisms on the Android platform as opposed to something like iOS. What are some of the benefits they have encountered during development on Android?
In iOS, Apple approves the use of only 100 different devices for development purposes, but Android doesn't have any restrictions, which helps considerably in internal and external beta-testing.
8. How much did the concept of Angry Birds (and, to a lesser extent, its sequels) change from the original concept?
Angry Birds began simply as a captivating screenshot of furious, cross-eyed birds. While the artwork was immediately engaging, the gameplay had not been fully fleshed out. Initially, the gameplay involved a colored bird destroying a colored block of the corresponding color, and the birds all had the same abilities and used eggs as power-ups. Features that are now integral to the game – the slingshot, the thieving green pigs, stolen eggs – were added as the game was developed, and the gameplay changed significantly.