We don’t remember a time when Rovio was not in the news. Aside from laying off 260 employees, IPO concerns, and well, launching Angry Birds 2 to a mixed response, the company’s latest attempt at catching on the Candy Crush Saga hype train is alive and well. Dubbed Nibblers, it’s a match-3 game that has you donning the role of fishes hunting down fruits like oranges, pears, plums, and bananas, as well as avoiding lizards. It’s on the App Store and Google Play.
(Also see:I Hate Angry Birds 2 – and I’m Addicted to It)
And much like Candy Crush Saga, it’s free with in-app purchases. You can buy extra moves and characters and the microtransactions range from Rs. 73.42 to Rs. 2,965.77 according to its listing on Google Play. Much like Angry Birds 2, don’t be surprised to see video ads make an appearance wherein the game offers you free items in exchange for you watching it.
What’s interesting is that this isn’t Rovio’s first attempt at trying to find some traction in the match-3 space. Earlier it partnered with developer Magic Tavern through its Rovio Stars publishing program to release Jolly Jam. This time around it’s trying its luck with a game that’s been developed in-house as a completely new IP.
(Also see:Angry Birds Creator Rovio Appoints New India Boss)
“We’re thrilled to bring a completely new IP to the mobile gaming scene,” said Heini Kaihu, Head of Studio at Rovio in a prepared statement. “Nibblers may be newly evolved creatures, but fans of our other games will recognize the Rovio touches – strong characters, beautiful visuals, and a lush soundtrack recorded with live orchestra and soloists. This will be a game you want to return to again and again.”
We hope so for Rovio’s sake that players do return again and again. The mobile gaming space has seen its fair share of turbulence in the last few months, impacting local business units in India as well, most notably Disney’s game development studio in the country. Considering that it’s a fresh IP from the Angry Birds creator, the outcome will be of interest to both industry watchers and fans.