If you haven’t played Angry Birds, and I realize the chances of that are approaching zero, Rovio’s apoplectic avians have finally made their way over to Facebook. Who knows why it had to be “just in time for Valentine’s Day,” but there it is, like a song the radio stations can’t stop playing.
The Facebook version adds a few wrinkles, like “social and competitive elements,” some new power-ups (“sling scope,” “king sling,” “super seeds” and “birdquake”) and a few Facebook-exclusive levels. Finnish developer Rovio says that’s “just the beginning for Angry Birds on Facebook,” too, adding that the company has a bunch of new stuff lined up for players in the coming weeks.
I guess I thought Angry Birds was already on Facebook, but no, those were just fan pages. The new Angry Birds app page — referring to itself as a “beta” version — launches a “Daily Rewards” view that promises presents on a daily basis (for how long, who knows). Just for logging in, I won the “Mighty Eagle,” basically a gigantic, wins-all, super-bird you can use infrequently. Once there, I clicked on a button promising a “free Valentine’s Day gift” and won 14 power-ups. Rovio says they’ll keep offering the power-ups through Feb. 16.
Level-wise, you’re looking at the classics “Poached Eggs” (all 189 levels) and “Mighty Hoax” (all 126 levels), plus the Facebook-exclusive “Surf and Turf” (45 levels). To your right, you’ll see a list of friends who’ve played, and of course a list of friends who haven’t with “invite” options. Also: a white column to the far right with sponsored ads, which is where Facebook/Rovio make their buck. A caveat: If you’re running on a laptop with a resolution of 1024 x 768 pixels (or less), in particular something running OS X where the dock takes up screen real estate, you won’t be able to fit the full game on-screen at once without switching to full-screen mode.
Load a level and Facebook pits you against a friend who’s played — I’m guessing the most recent one? — by showing your per-level score beside theirs. If you beat their score, you can “brag” by clicking a button beneath their picture (thank you Rovio for introducing yet another way to badger our virtual compadres!).