The Angry Birds video game has been a global hit, but no one has taken that obsession as far as China. When it comes to the Angry Birdification of your clothes, food and entertainment, there’s no bounds to what China is capable of wholeheartedly embracing – and coming up with themselves.
The most timely merchandise on Chinese shelves is the Angry Bird mooncakes. The app-inspired treat is out just in time for this weekend’s Mid-Autumn Festival. Rovio, the game developer, launched the mooncakes in Hong Kong; although you can’t find them in Beijing stores, these lotus-seed-paste-and-egg-yolk-filled pastries are up for grabs on Taobao.
Rovio has also released a seasonal version of the Angry Birds game, specifically aimed at the Chinese market. The Moon Festival edition, available at the AppStore, sends the Birds "to China for the mooncake festival! The 3000-year-old harvest festival is one of the most important Chinese holidays, and the pigs think they can hide themselves in the midst of all the celebrations. Help the Angry Birds as they chase the pigs through 30 brand new levels filled with pagodas, rabbits, and red lanterns, lit by a dazzling harvest moon."
Another licensed item from Rovio is a new line of sneakers. The shoes come in seven different colors, each featuring a different character. Supposedly, they are only available in China through LeTao.com.
While Rovio is certainly focused on the Chinese market, they’re still not providing enough goods to meet China’s demand. Just about every article of clothing can be found online or in Beijing markets emblazoned with the video game characters, including an Angry Birds bra (see photo, above) that gives equal time to furious bird and smug pig.
The game has even moved off the small screen. Game booths that allow you to test out your throwing arm have been spotted in Guangzhou arcades, but the best large-scale gameplay experience recently opened in Changsha, featuring a life-sized set up with plush birds and a slingshot to send them flying.
This article is excerpted from thebeijinger.com.