They’ve been hinting at it for more than a year now. Rovio has long said that the Angry Birds universe isn’t limited to the vantage point of the birds. The pigs, in fact, have a long backstory.
And this is the month where they’ll finally be able to tell it with the upcoming Bad Piggies release on Sept. 27. The Finnish game developer, which is backed by Accel Partners, Atomico and Felicis, finally gave a sneak preview of gameplay. Not too surprisingly, it’s a physics game. But instead of launching birds into complicated structures of glass and wood, the player is tasked with building vehicles and flying aircraft so that the pigs can steal more eggs.
Rovio has a lot to live up to with this game. It’s the first major title that’s still part of the Angry Birds world, that isn’t some kind of seasonal release or brand marketing tie-in. They released another game, Amazing Alex, over the summer but the storyline wasn’t tied to Angry Birds. The company made more than $100 million in revenue last year through sales of games, in-app purchases and boatloads of merchandise.
The natural question Rovio has always faced, however, is whether it’s a one-hit wonder. The company has staved off that question by saying that the Angry Birds world can always be deepened and expanded with more stories and games. Think about how Mario Bros. had car racing games or how Mickey Mouse has managed to stick around for more than 80 years with a cast of character friends. That’s what the company is hoping to do here.