Rovio Pigs Out on Angry Birds Franchise After Less-Than-Amazing Alex

After venturing beyond its core game franchise, Rovio is back with another variation of its hit Angry Birds game, this one called Bad Piggies.

While much of the game play will remain a mystery until it comes out on iOS, Android and Mac starting Sept. 27, Rovio confirms that it has turned the Angry Birds plot on its head, with players in the role of the pigs instead of the birds. And there are no slingshots.

In a release, Rovio’s CEO Mikael Hed said Bad Piggies is fulfilling consumer demand.

“There’s a lot of empathy towards the lovable enemies from the Angry Birds games, and we’ve been constantly asked: What about the pigs’ side of the story?” Hed said. “Bad Piggies gives you the chance to play as the second-most-loved characters in the Angry Birds universe, and explore this rich world through their green eyes.”

Later versions of the game will be available for Windows Phone and Windows 8.

The sequel comes close on the heels of Rovio’s launch of Amazing Alex, a physics-based game released in July. While Amazing Alex initially flew to the top of the charts, it has failed to sustain the same kind of momentum that Angry Birds has to date. After less than two months, Amazing Alex ranks as the 73rd most popular paid app, and the 42nd most popular paid game in the U.S., according to AppData.

The quick return to the Angry Birds franchise brings into question whether the Finnish game maker will be able to replicate its success with other games, or whether it will continue to be a one-hit wonder.

Here’s the trailer for the new game:

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— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik