While budget cuts may keep some NASA missions on the ground, Rovio’s Angry Birds will be heading spaceward in the fourth edition of the popular gaming title, according to Appolicious.com. Teaming with NASA and National Geographic, the partnership will add a dash of education to the game’s usual bird-slinging action.
"It's one small fling for a bird, one quantum leap for birdkind," the Finish game maker quips on a teaser page at its Angry Birds website showing the Earth rising above an empty, moon-anchored slingshot.
National Geographic will publish a pair of companion books to go along with the game, which debuts for Apple iOS and Android (News - Alert) devices in March, Appolicious notes. The books will offer information for users regarding the space environments they play through in the game. The first book, aptly titled National Geographic Angry Birds Space, will be available around the time of the new game’s launch. A second book will follow later in the fall, sparking speculation that another game release could be timed for later in the year.
"Science and education are very important to us, and we're very excited to have NASA and National Geographic as launch partners on Angry Birds Space," Andrew Stalbow, GM of Rovio North America, told Yahoo! Games. Rovio has not yet provided details on NASA’s contribution to the game. Exactly what obstacles the birds will face in space hasn’t been fully disclosed by Rovio, though players can expect more of the same style of play that has made the game so popular. New characters and space-based complications like zero-gravity and different planetary environments will introduce new challenges to the game, Appolicious indicates. Yahoo! Games reports that in the Space edition, some of the birds will possess “super powers."
Rovio has been busy expanding its Angry Birds empire. According to Yahoo! Games, the last three editions of Angry Birds have been downloaded more than 700 million times on iOS and Android mobile devices, and recently participated in the debut of the Google (News - Alert) Plus gaming channel. The birds have also invaded Facebook for those who simply can’t get enough bird-slinging action.
Angry Birds Space lands in the iTunes App Store on March 22; National Geographic Angry Birds Space bows on March 20.
Chris Freeburn is a Web Editor for TMCnet.
Edited by Chris Freeburn