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>> Tail, ribs, giblets!>> Finnish game creator Rovio is taking two Angry Birds with one stone. With the release of its 3-D, animated movie, the Angry Birds creator has landed a box office hit and appears to have made its video game cool again. It means 2016 was a turnaround year for Rovio, which reported its annual results on Tuesday.
Reuters' Helsinki bureau chief, UC Rosenthal, says the boost was much needed.>> The original Angry Birds game was a huge success in 2009, because it was very well timed. It was actually one of the first games designed for touchscreen smartphones. Rovio also managed to capitalize on the brand early on by licensing its use on a string of consumer products, like toys, clothes, and all kinds of everyday items.
But, as we know, Rovio saw its earnings fall for several years in the wake of new challengers. But now the Angry Birds movie launched last year seemed to help put the brand back on the market.>> The movie release helped Angry Birds hit back at competition from new challenges such as Nintendo's global hit Pokemon Go game.
Rovio's annual sales jumped by over a third in 2016, helping it swing back into a profit after years of decline. CEO says the public responded well to the movie all over the world.>> We are very happy. It was number one opening movie in 52 countries overall, and also a third largest for an animated movie in China, ever.
So very good. Very good perception.>> But popularity in the fast-paced gaming industry can be short-lived. So a question still remains, can Rovio spread its wings again with new games beyond Angry Birds?