And the most-searched game of 2014 was… sigh

searched game 2014 flappy bird
Flappy Bird was the biggest thing in gaming for 2014, according to Google. In a new report analyzing the year’s search data, Google listed the top trending games of 2014, in descending order: Flappy Bird, 2048, FIFA 15, Destiny, and Titanfall. Two mobile games developed by individuals in under three days each beating out Destiny, reportedly the most expensive game ever developed, is a sobering reality check for what gaming meant to most people in 2014.

According to Google TrendsFlappy Bird‘s peak popularity in February (when guilt over the game’s addictiveness drove designer Dong Nguyen to pull it) dwarfed any other games from the year, securing the top average even with a rapidly diminishing tail of interest for the remainder of the year.

Mobile puzzler and Threes clone 2048 never hit the height of Flappy Bird or Destiny at their peaks, but nevertheless sustained a slower-burning plateau of popularity from its release in March through the spring and early summer, earning it the number two spot for overall average search popularity.

In an interesting and perhaps related note, searches for “’90s computer games” surged 20x over the previous year. This exploding interest in older games is no doubt fueled by the rising popularity and critical acclaim of lo-fi indie releases like Shovel Knight and 1001 Spikes.

Card games were also apparently the most searched game format, taking the crown from mobile games. That growth is likely bolstered by the rise of Blizzard’s digital card game, Hearthstone, along with the steady and impressive growth of the card and board gaming industry from the last few years. Graphics look better than ever, but gameplay was king in 2014.

One final, encouraging note is that we searched for “games for girls” more than “games for kids” or “games for boys.” While it should be noted that, for too many people, searching simply for “games” all but implies “for boys/kids,” the increased public discourse on the presence and treatment of women in gaming, both as players and creators, is a heartening step toward gaming’s egalitarian future. More people playing more kinds of games is fantastic news for anyone invested in the hobby.

Gaming

Take-Two Interactive takes down another ‘GTA Online’ modder, seeks $150K

Take-Two Interactive and Rockstar Games have filed a lawsuit against the GTA Online modder behind the software named Elusive. The publisher is continuing its crackdown against GTA Online mods.
Gaming

Relive Nintendo’s handheld golden age with the 25 best Game Boy Advance games

The Game Boy Advance was the swan song of the Game Boy era. It also happened to have a boatload of amazing games. We decided to countdown our 25 favorite GBA games. Check it out and let us know your favorites in the comments below!
Gaming

It's dangerous to go alone! Have fun with friends in our favorite co-op games

Video games don't always have to be so brutal, dog-eat-dog experiences! Here are some of our all-time favorite co-op games across a range of platforms, genres, and difficulties.
Gaming

‘Fortnite’ streamer reportedly arrested after abusing wife while on Twitch

An Australian Fortnite streamer who goes by the name MrDeathMoth abused his pregnant wife while he was live on Twitch. An anonymous cybersecurity expert took matters into his own hands, resulting in the arrest of the streamer.
Deals

Miss Black Friday but still need an Xbox? Walmart has you covered

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have both come and gone, but you can still save some cash on a new Xbox One bundle at Walmart. Both the Xbox One S and the Xbox One X are on sale now.
Gaming

The most common Nintendo 3DS problems, and how to fix them

The Nintendo 3DS has seen its fair share of issues since it launched in 2011, including poor battery life and fragile Circle Pads. Here are some of the most common, as well as the steps you can take to solve them.
Gaming

The Epic Games store is already luring indie studios away from Steam

The Epic Games Store is less than a week old, but it's already making waves among indie studios. Multiple studios have announced that their games will be timed exclusives on the Epic Games Store, with one studio forgoing Steam completely.
Gaming

Bundle up for the huge ‘Monster Hunter: World’ expansion coming in 2019

Monster Hunter: World is getting a major expansion in fall 2019 called Iceborne. The expansion will be similar in scope as the Ultimate versions of previous Monster Hunter games, featuring new quests, monsters, weapons, and armor.
Gaming

How to keep a PS4 in your pocket with the PlayStation Mobile app

Sony built the PlayStation 4 with smartphone and mobile integration in mind. Take a look at our guide for connecting your smartphone or tablet to a PS4, so you can browse profiles, trophies, and other content directly on your mobile device.
Deals

Play ‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ the best way with a Switch GameCube controller

If you're a longtime Super Smash Bros. player, then you know there's only one true way to play. Alongside the recent launch of the new 'Super Smash Bros. Ultimate,' Nintendo has brought back the iconic GameCube controller.
Gaming

Apple Mac users should take a bite out of these awesome games

Contrary to popular belief, there exists a bevy of popular A-list games compatible for Mac computers. Take a look at our picks for the best Mac games available for Apple fans.
Gaming

The hottest Nintendo Switch games you can get right now

The Nintendo Switch's lineup started off small, but games have steadily released as the console continues through its second year. Here are the best Nintendo Switch games available now, from Super Mario Odyssey to Fortnite.
Deals

Check out the best Green Monday deals for those last-minute gifts

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone, but that doesn't mean you've missed your chance of finding a great deal. We're talking about Green Monday, of course, and it falls on December 10.
Gaming

Itching to fight in an online match with friends in 'SSB Ultimate'? Here's how

You can play online against your friends in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, but it isn't quite as simple as you might expect from a multiplayer game in 2018. Here's how you can do so using the Battle Arena system.