Flappy Bird is headed to a video arcade near you

Earn tickets for prizes by torturing yourself with this impossible game.


Dennis Scimeca

Internet Culture

Published Jan 13, 2015   Updated May 29, 2021, 6:48 pm CDT

Bay Tek Games has announced the release of an arcade cabinet version of Flappy Bird, the punishingly difficult mobile game that obsessed players and led to a kind of Flappy Bird craze early last year. 

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Flappy Bird’s arcade version dispenses tickets like a Skee-Ball machine. What must have been test versions of the cabinet were found by GameInformer in August and by a YouTuber who posted video of the game on Oct. 8. Note in the video that the player earns a score of 40, which was close to impossible for most people on the original, mobile versions of Flappy Bird.

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Flappy Bird was originally released as an iOS game in May 2013 and for Android devices in January 2014. In theory, the gameplay was simple. You tapped the screen to make a cute little bird flap its wings and fly between a pair of green pipes. In reality, the game was preposterously difficult, which led to Flappy Bird’s popularity. At one point the game’s designer, Dong Nguyen, said Flappy Bird was earning him $50,000 a day via the in-game advertising profit model.

The attention led to the accusations of plagiarism—the pipes in Flappy Bird looked an awful lot like the pipes in Super Mario Bros.—though both Nintendo and Nguyen denied that any related legal issues ever arose. When Nguyen pulled Flappy Bird off the App Store and Google Play in February, he said that concerns over abusive behavior inspired the move. In August, Nguyen released a two-player version of Flappy Bird called Flappy Bird Family for Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. 

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If you deleted Flappy Bird from your mobile device and have since been jonesing for a fix and don’t have access to either of those Amazon services, now you can track down one of the new arcade cabinets. Then hope the Flappy Bird arcade game stays on the market for longer than the original version. And figure out what you’re going to buy with all those arcade tickets.

H/T DigitalWack | Image via Rain0975/Flickr (CC 2.0) | Image via BagoGames/Flickr (CC 2.0) | Remix by Max Fleishman

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*First Published: Jan 13, 2015, 7:17 pm CST