Swing Copters review: Crash, boom, bang

Flappy Birds met it's end abruptly. Dong Nguyen, the creator of the game, pulled it from app stores because he was guilty the game was "too addictive", despite the fact that he was earning $50,000 in ad revenue per day.

Then started the great game gold rush of 2014. As creators rushed to fill the void with their clones. Even Rovio, the guys behind the last sensation, Angry Birds, launched their own Flappy Bird clone. Yet, fans waited eagerly, sitting by their phones, for Nguyen to change his mind.

The good news is, he has changed his mind but don't break out the champagne and rasgullas just yet, it's not Flappy Bird.

Meet Swing Copter - a new Flappy Bird that moves vertically instead of horizontally. The premise is simple, you tap to guide a guy in a propeller hat through the girders with wrecking balls. The graphics are similar to Flappy Bird, though a lot less than Mario.

It looks like Flappy Bird, it plays like Flappy Bird, but it's not Flappy Bird. Flappy Bird was a simple game with a simple gameplay. Which is why it was so addictive. Your eyes are telling your brain "Oh! It's got a cartoon bird in a Mario landscape, how hard can it be" while your fingers are screaming seven shades of curse words as you nearly break your digits just clearing those pipe obstacles. And you keep coming back for more.

That's not the case with Swing Copter, which makes it stupidly tough to manoeuvre the character through the girders. There's no real way to control which side the copter is actually going so it just results in crashes. Tap too furiously and you have no control, and you veer slowly in one direction. Stop tapping and your copter swings and crashes.

If Flappy Birds, the Dark Souls series and Wayward Souls on iOS has taught us anything, it's that people love games that are blisteringly tough to the point of punishing. This is because of the superb sense of gratification when you actually pass the level or get a high score. Which, in an easier game, is the end score - a bunch of token numbers. In Flappy Birds that number means something because the player worked hard for it. It's justified.

Somehow, Swing Copter takes all the masochistic fun away, making it just plain unbeatable and frustrating, not to mention insane. The unpredictable outcome of the controls is just plain frustrating. Hopefully the creator will tweak the game to make it less of a wildcard and more in control.

Swing Copter is free, no hidden costs, no in app purchases. There's just an ad on top. While Swing Copter has come from the mind that created Flappy Bird, it falls under the category of half baked clones. While the entire mobile world will go crazy over this game, we close this review with a few words to Mr Dong Nguyen. Just bring Flappy Birds back!

Rating - 2.5/5

Best features: - From the creator of Flappy Bird. - It's free - Tough gameplay

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