Business Insider interviews Massimo Guareschi, developer of Splashy Fish, which is currently sitting at number one on the App Store's free chart:
BUSINESS INSIDER: How long did did the game take from inception to going live in app stores? I assume the inspiration was Flappy Bird's success.
GUARESCHI: 3 people have been working full-time for 3 days. Flappy Bird has obviously been a good inspiration but, as a matter of fact, the game was born from my nephew's idea: They were playing [Flappy Bird] and used to ask me for better features in order to improve the game. That's where the idea of Splashy Fish comes from.
BI: What day specifically did it launch, and how long did it take to become number one in the app store?
MG: It was launched on the 11th February at midnight PST and in about 15 hours it become number one in the Apple Store.
BI: What is Splashy Fish doing right to be the top Flappy Bird spin-off out there?
MG: Me and my colleagues tried to focus our attention to little peculiarities, in fact we added many features that our players appreciated: We added 5 trophies to make the game more challenging and to personalize the fish and we used appealing sound effects. I remind you that other cool updates have still to come.
Well, ok…so Splashy Fish's secret sauce was adding “5 trophies”. Uhmm… Are you freaking kidding me? As of right now, 7 of the top 20 games on the App Store's free chart are straight up Flappy Bird knock offs, give or take a few added trophies here and there. I know that eventually the “all the things Flappy” craze will die, but for right now the App Store is effectively broken for gamers and game developers.