A new mobile game has gone viral on Chinese social media. It’s all about watermelons. No, really. Synthetic Watermelon (合成大西瓜), a game that people can play on Chinese messaging app WeChat and is kind of like a mix of 2048 and Tetris, has the whole country talking — and making their own spin-offs.
After just 10 days on the market, the game has amassed almost 80 million players worldwide, according to its official website. But there are likely even more players of the game due to the huge number of variations now flying around on the Chinese internet. Tutorials have sprung up showing how to create your own version building on the original’s code (available on GitHub) and even gaming novices appear to be giving it a go.
The hashtag #Synthetic Watermelon# has attracted more than 1,840 million views on China’s Twitter-like microblogging platform Weibo as people discuss the game and share their own versions.
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This is how the game works: while fruits of different types and size are dropping down from the top of the screen, users can combine fruits of the same type — which turns them into a bigger fruit — until they can get a giant watermelon.
Simple, but addictive.
The basic nature of the game, combined with video tutorials, has resulted in a host of spin-off versions made by creative netizens (or more likely, employees slacking off in the run up to the Lunar New Year holiday). In one, the fruit pieces are replaced by faces of “little fresh meat,” hot young male celebrities such as Jackson Wang. Another swaps in BTS star V (Kim Tae-hyung):
We made a game of TaeTae for free??The original game is quite popular in China, so we made TaeTae version for you! Watch the video instruction and start your game!?#2YearsWithScenery#KIMTAEHYUNGgame link 1: https://t.co/U7WTv7XmAQgame link 2: https://t.co/T2x8IM8jLl pic.twitter.com/h7DdY5678r— CHINA Baidu Vbar (@KIMTAEHYUNGBAR_) January 29, 2021
We made a game of TaeTae for free??The original game is quite popular in China, so we made TaeTae version for you! Watch the video instruction and start your game!?#2YearsWithScenery#KIMTAEHYUNG
game link 1: https://t.co/U7WTv7XmAQgame link 2: https://t.co/T2x8IM8jLl pic.twitter.com/h7DdY5678r
— CHINA Baidu Vbar (@KIMTAEHYUNGBAR_) January 29, 2021
Other customized takes on the game include one with pictures of cute kittens, one featuring university logos (with an implied hierarchy of course), and one with images of Japanese superhero Ultraman.
Still waiting on someone to make a Bernie version though.
Cover Image: Depositphotos
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