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技术 - 2011科技头脑风暴

小块头有大志向:《愤怒的小鸟》剑指10亿粉丝

Stacy Cowley 2011年07月25日

Rovio雄心勃勃地计划打造一个全球性的娱乐帝国,而移动游戏只是其双翼中的一支。

    下面这个统计数据十分有趣:现在全球已有3亿多玩家下载过Rovio出品的小游戏《愤怒的小鸟》(Angry Birds),这些玩家已共计发射了1,000多亿只鸟,比地球上所有真正的鸟还多。

    上周四在《财富》科技头脑风暴(Fortune's Brainstorm Tech)大会上,Rovio的营销总监,绰号“神鹰”的彼得•维斯特贝加对与会者说道:“我们的目标是成为移动游戏的第一品牌,拥有10亿粉丝。我们说的不是‘消费者’,也不是‘用户’,我们说的是‘粉丝’。”

    《愤怒的小鸟》仿佛是受了幸运之神的眷顾,因此才能够一夜暴红。但事实上,Rovio公司自创立以来已兢兢业业打拼八年,《愤怒的小鸟》是该公司推出的第51款游戏。那些已成经典的游戏角色以及令人上瘾的玩法,其实都是精心炮制出来的。这款游戏最早在Facebook上突然蹿红,但维斯特贝加却毫不意外。

    他说:“在我个人看来,许多社交游戏谈不上有多好玩。它们有点像吸烟——你知道它对你没什么好处,但就是没法戒掉。但是一旦戒掉了,就不会再回头。而我们的策略就是,游戏一定要有趣味性,使你还想回头接着玩。”

    社交游戏市场使Zynga公司一跃崛起为一个年销售额6亿美元的大企业。现在这个市场可能已到了盛极而衰的时候。游戏出版商PlayFirst公司的CEO玛莉•贝克表示,据她的公司研究显示,智能手机游戏市场的增长速度已经远远超过了社交游戏。

    Rovio公司并没有把所有的蛋(也就是那些尚未被邪恶的猪偷走的蛋)都放在社交游戏市场这个篮子里。Rovio最近收购了芬兰的动画工作室Kombo,并且计划在两三年内推出自己的首部电影。维斯特贝加表示:“《愤怒的小鸟》还有很多故事没有推出。”Rovio还打算自行出版一系列图书,其中的第一本是以《愤怒的小鸟》为主题的菜谱,今年年底就将出版。

    不过Rovio公司也在尽力确保《愤怒的小鸟》的每个周边产品都能给人以兴奋感和新鲜感。而不能像好莱坞那样,每次为经典电影拍续集,拍出来的东西都差强人意。

    维斯特贝加表示:“我们并没有研发《愤怒的小鸟》第二部,而是在努力为《愤怒的小鸟》打造新的体验。”他把任天堂(Nintendo)出品的《超级玛丽》(Mario Bros)当成自己的榜样。《超级玛丽》诞生25年来一直经久不衰,还推出了几十个后续版本,不断吸引着新的玩家。

    译者:朴成奎

    Here's a fun stat: The 300 million players who have downloaded Rovio's Angry Birds games have flung more than 100 billion avians -- more birds than actually exist in the entire world.

    "Our goal is to be the first brand with a billion fans," Peter "Mighty Eagle" Vesterbacka, Rovio's chief marketing officer, told attendees Thursday at Fortune's Brainstorm Tech. "We don't talk about consumers, users -- we want fans."

    Angry Birds might seem like an overnight, stroke-of-luck success, but it was the 51st game launched by 8-year-old Rovio, and the game's now-iconic characters and addictive nature were carefully crafted. Vesterbacka isn't impressed with much of what he sees cropping up on Facebook.

    "I personally think a lot of the social games are not so much fun," he said. "They're a bit like smoking -- you know it's not good for you, but it's hard to stop. But once you do stop, you don't go back. Our approach is that games have to be fun, so you want to go back and play."

    The social market -- the one that built Zynga into a powerhouse with annual sales of nearly $600 million -- may be peaking. PlayFirst CEO Mari Baker said her company's research shows that smartphone gaming is growing much faster than social gaming.

    Rovio isn't putting all its eggs (the ones those malevolent pigs haven't stolen away) in the gaming basket. The company recently acquired Finnish animation studio Kombo and is two to three years away from making its first movie: "There's a lot more to the Angry Birds story than you've seen so far," Vesterbacka said. It's also launching a self-published book line, with its first title -- an Angry Birds cookbook -- due out later this year.

    But the company is mindful that each new Angry Birds creation has to feel exciting and original. The wrong sequel model is the one Hollywood uses, when it tries to clone its hits.

    "We're not working on Angry Birds 2," Vesterbacka said. "We're working on new Angry Birds experiences." He cited Nintendo's Mario Bros. franchise as a role model, where dozens of installments have lured in new players for more than 25 years.

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