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Flappy Bird: Top 5 tips, hints, and cheats

Flappy Bird is the hottest game on the App Store — at least for the moment — and topmost on every gamer's mind is how to get a higher score than their friends... and without smashing their phone to pieces in the process. A fantastically terrible game, its design is derivative, its mechanics maddening, and its popularity no doubt the result of incredible rage-of-mouth marketing. Yet despite all of that (or maybe because of it)... Can't. Stop. Playing. So how can you get better at Flappy Bird faster? For some games it's simply a matter of finding the right tips, hints, and cheats. Flappy Bird, however, is so simple, that there are few to no ways to hack the system. But that doesn't mean you can't hack yourself...

  • Free - Download Flappy Bird now

1. Bigger is better

Flappy Bird might be an iPhone game but that doesn't mean you can't play it on the iPad, if you have one. At 2x on the iPad, Flappy Bird is literally twice as big and that means you not only have a great field of play, but an easier way of discerning details, and less of a chance your own finger will obscure your view and get in your way.

2. Stay out of your own way

If you are playing Flappy Bird on an iPhone, pick a smart place to tap and stick with it. If you're right handed, the bottom right corner works well. It's comfortable but also won't obscure the oncoming pipes so you can see their arrangement as early as possible. If you're left handed, there's little risk of obscuring the pipes, but you'll still want to stick with the bottom corner to make sure the bird stays in focus. (I know some people who use a thin stylus instead of their finger to game for just that reason.)

3. Do not Disturb is your friend

Improve your iPhone's bedside manner with this quick Do Not Disturb tip

There's no feeling in the world worse than getting close to your high score only for your phone to ring and take you right out of the game. Or for your iPhone — or iPad! — to pop up a message, sound an alarm, or otherwise shock you into tap-tripping, pipe-smashing doom. Do yourself a favor and turn on Do not Disturb before you start to play.

You might also want to take a moment to force quit all other apps and reboot before you play. Flappy Bird is as glitchy as it is annoying, and a crash is as bad a call or an alert while you're tying to beat your high score.

4. It's all in the timing

The single most important skill in Flappy Bird is timing your taps. The game is entirely about getting the bird through the pipes without touching any part of them. That means you have to learn to keep it as level as possible. Since the bird is always coming up or going down, the trick is to time your taps so that the amplitude of those peaks and dips are as short as possible — short enough to fit through the pipes. Tap quickly, tap regularly.

The next trick is to learn to recover to that rhythm quickly after you rise or fall to the right height for the pipe. You'll need to tap or double-tap up, or pause down, then get stable again really fast. If you're a natural, curse you. If not, you're going to have to practice. A lot.

5. Manage your stress

Your body doesn't know the difference between real stress — look out, car! — and virtual stress — look out, pipe! Games cause a physical reaction. A rush. That's why we play them. But it's also why they can make us crazy. Luckily, because the body doesn't know the difference, the same things that can keep us calm in the real world can keep us calm in the game world too: Slow, steady, breathing. Sounds silly, I know, but there's a reason why the best fighters, the best sharpshooters, and the best surgeons all learn to manage their breathing. It creates calm. It creates focus. It puts you in the zone. And it means that, when you start getting close to your high score — or your friend's high score — you'll be less likely to freak out and fly right into a pipe.

  • ZEN & TECH 1: How to breathe your way to lower stress

Bonus tip: Fly low!

From our own Kevin Michaluk in the comments:

If you come into the pipes on the low side and tap right before, there's less chance of tapping too hard and crashing on the high side. If you come in middle or high and tap a bit too hard, you're crashy bird. I kept crashing on the high side so switching to this technique helped me triple my score fast.

Your top Flappy Wing tips, hints, and tricks?

If these Flappy Bird tips, hints, and cheats work for you, be sure to let me know, and if you've come up with other ways to do better, faster at Flappy Bird, absolutely let me know. And, as always, include your high score!

Rene Ritchie
Contributor

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

28 Comments
  • I actually find it hillarious when the bird huts the pipe and crashes to the ground. Perhaps it's because I fon't take the game seriously. Perhaps it's because I don't play the game for a score so far. But I break out into laughter every time.
  • OMG, "Crashy Bird", the Flappy Bird mini-game!
  • I enjoy the challenge, I'm currently up to a high score of 42
  • Curse you and your high score- I'm stuck at 33. :P
  • App Store team:
    We got to 99.
  • I was just playing and i have a score of 178
  • That's awesome. Any personal tips to add?
  • 170 :) Nexus 5... enough said
  • Ok, here's my two additional tips: Fly in Low. If you come into the pipes on the low side and tap right before, there's less chance of tapping too hard and crashing on the high side. If you come in middle or high and tap a bit too hard, you're crashy bird. I kept crashing on the high side so switching to this technique helped me triple my score fast. Tap with your fourth finger (the one beside the pinky). First I was tapping on my index finger. Then my middle finger. Once I switched to my four finger on my right hand, I felt I had much better control on my taps. A little softer touch. Made a big difference.
  • Why not play as the floating head of Nic Cage instead?
    http://www.ifans.com/blog/96644/
  • I keep hearing so much about this game. I guess I'm going to give it try and see what all the talk is about. Sent from the iMore App
  • If you love your phone, then don't. Guaranteeing you that you will throw it at least once! Nexus 5... enough said
  • Or just get an otterbox.
  • Seriously, it's Wargames protocol here. The only way to win... is not to play.
  • Cheats and hacks are already out for ios and android giving up to thousand of score. Never been played this maybe bcos i find it so boring. Sent from the iMore App
  • The biggest tip I can give is to cover up your score (the biggest distraction in the game - even more than those blinking adds!!) I use a tiny bit of sticky tape. This way when you get near your or anybody else's high score you don't PANIC!! One other thing has anybody else found that reminders in ios stops the game 'mid flight' and forces you to go back to the menu without saving your score. I played yesterday and this happened. A reminder popped down from the top of the screen and the game stopped. When I pulled back my trusted bit of tape I had a score if 62. I couldn't continue and score was deleted. Very, very cross!!!! Gutted. I was on a roll. Sent from the iMore App
  • Dam, I read this article hoping for a cheat. I am stuck at 17 while my kids are closing in on 50
  • I found when you come in to a pipe wait til the very last minute, just before you almost hit the top surface of the bottom pipe you tap. I focus on the top surface of the bottom pipe and not the bird. Also turn off the sound.
  • It's crazy that this game was only made in 2 days! It's so annoyingly addictive! Also we've just written an article about some Flappy Bird facts... you guys would probably like it! Google - The Fact Site & check out the newest article!
  • Seems to be another word of mouth fad for sheep minded individuals. Isn't it a copy of Line Birds? This game is terrible. Deleted it after 4 games.
  • The game is maddening -- particularly if you play a similar game with different physics. I play iCopter and then this and they both "fall" at different rates. At least with iCopter you feel like you're getting somewhere ;-) Sent from the iMore App
  • Found another tutorial: http://sploid.gizmodo.com/how-to-beat-flappy-bird-a-video-tutorial-15185... Sent from the iMore App
  • One more trick is to keep locking at the bird instead of the pipes!!! Sent from the iMore App
  • One trick that made a huge difference for me was to use duct tape to cover the scoreboard. Helps to manage your stress and improve concentration on the game:
    http://www.buzzfeed.com/frankmartela/how-i-used-duct-tape-to-get-100-poi...
  • This is not easy to reach to highest score in Flappy bird, watch the video to see my friends highest score
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pnx8DyHxQdY
  • David Portnoy, a 15-year-old birding fanatic, thinks that he's made the discovery of a lifetime. So, on the eve of his father's remarriage, he escapes on an epic road trip with his best friends to solidify their place in birding history. http://moviedownload4you.com/?p=197
    http://moviedownload4you.com/?p=197 After spotting what he thinks is an extinct duck, high school sophomore and bird enthusiast David Portnoy persuades his two dorky buddies and the "new girl in school" to join him on a quest to locate the mysterious bird. What begins as a simple and straightforward mission becomes a coming-of-age adventure for all involved, particularly David, who must come to terms with some painful aspects of his family life.
  • HEY GUYS...CHECK THIS OUT...GET SCORES EASILY>> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VfJ7kcWgTho
  • The hardest flappy bird version -> The Hardest Unhappy Bird.
    Yes, it is harder than flappy bird as you have to flap two birds at one time.
    Are you ready to challenge yourself?
    https://www.imore.com/e?link=https2F2Flinks%2F1...