From one perspective, 'Flappy Bird' is a fun little game that wastes three minutes of your life in a pleasant sort of way.
From another, 'Flappy Bird' is a poison that has (a) totally wrecked the iOS App Store and (b) fractured the minds of thousands of well-meaning games designers and critics, whose life work has been totally undermined by the phenomenon of crapness that is Nguyen Dong's game.
As evidence for that, we present 'Ironpants' -- a game which has just hit the number two position on the global iTunes App Store 'free' charts, but is both awful AND a total rip-off of 'Flappy Birds'.
In Ironpants, you control the flight of a little guy in a mask and cape, and have to press on the screen to make him fly up in order to get through little gaps. The controls are the same as Flappy Bird, the graphics are similar, and the overall experience is equally annoying.
And yet, for some reason this game has enjoyed a meteoric rise almost, if not quite, comparable to that of its obvious inspiration.
Reviewers seem to agree, leaving a similarly huge number of negative, extremely descriptive reviews about how their lives have been ruined by the game.
And indeed, there is almost nothing to recommend it. It is frustrating, irritating, boring and glitchy. It is a pathetic get-rich-quick cash-in, devoid of any merit or worth, and it is hard to believe anyone with an IQ above the minimum required to keep breathing could possibly enjoy it.
There is no word yet on how this game has become so popular so quickly. There is no word on why anyone would spend more than five minutes with it.
But on thing IS clear - Flappy Bird is a genre now. And Ironpants is only the first of its horrible offspring.