Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates


Zimbabwean developer jumps onto national quail craze with chihuta video game

Quails in Zimbabwe, Chiuta, Android Games, Zimbabwean Video Games

Before the bond notes and the return of the local currency became the most talked about issues by Zimbabweans, the most trending topic was about the least likely issue – quail birds.

Knows as zvihuta in Shona, the birds inspired a social media craze especially after the news of a ban on their trade. All this was played out in a slew of jokes, memes, hashtags, comedy skits and even a Zim dancehall riddim with some ephemeral hit tracks.

Now, the bird has inspired has creativity in technology through a new mobile game. Ishmael Chibvuri a Zimbabwean app developer has tapped into the quail bird craze and created his own video game called the Chihuta Bird Game.

Chihuta Bird Game is available for Android and users can download it on Google Play by following this link.

Chiuta, Zimbabwean Video Games, African Mobile Games

The objective of the game is to help your chihuta bird gather food, in the form of red cherries while avoiding obstacles like boulders, trees, mushrooms, and barrels. Game play is accompanied by a Zim Dancehall record which is, unsurprisingly a Chihuta track – specifically Princo Spice’s Chihuta tune.

As far as complexity goes, Chihuta Bird Game is clearly designed for any player who understands the basics of any platform game (just think of Banjo-Kazooie, Donkey Kong, Super Mario or any other “jumping” free running game).

Learning its basics and focusing on getting a good score won’t take that much effort, but after jumping through to level 12 I still wasn’t sure what the end game (no pun) is meant to be here.

Chiuta, Zviuta, Mobile Games, Android Developers

However, that doesn’t seem like that big a deal. The game clearly isn’t taking itself too seriously and it appears to be just a whimsical way to keep the scores of Zimbabweans who have been sucked into the chihuta craze engaged through another medium.

Chibvuri, who has worked on other projects like the Ndeipi Messenger and 263 News has latched onto a social trend and churned out a locally relevant game, albeit a simple one. It’s something that local developers aren’t quick to do, even if it’s just for laughs, the humble Google Ad revenue or the temporary visibility.

Who knows, maybe another trend like bond notes, #ThisFlag, Mega Deals, faction wars, or #ProblemsDisappear will inspire some other developer to create another Android game that can offer some temporary entertainment value.

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19 thoughts on “Zimbabwean developer jumps onto national quail craze with chihuta video game

  1. This is exciting. I would love to review the game. I wrote on 4th of May around creativity unleashed by chihuta cracy. At that point, could not even imagine a chihuta game. Keep the pace, continue creating.

  2. Nice stepvin the right direction, other devs xan pick up from this starting point

  3. Why does app need access to my ID call log location data files phone sms my google profile and contacts. These are bloody scam artists because it is impractical if not to steal data

    1. Lol, nice one! I would have pranked the everyone so hard if this had been on time for April fools!

  4. This is just a repackaged game. Various versions are all over the Internet, e.g, . Even Ndeipi Messenger is just custom version of Telegram Messenger. It would be nice for the developer to credit the original authors, rather than take credit for re-branding someone elses work. This is neither innovation nor creativity.

      1. To quote the article, “Now, the bird has inspired has creativity in technology through a *NEW* mobile game. Ishmael Chibvuri a Zimbabwean app developer has tapped into the quail bird craze and *CREATED* his *OWN* video game called the Chihuta Bird Game.” The game is neither NEW, nor his CREATION. Even if in casual or professional blogging, words should be used to express journalistic correctness.

    1. That’s why it free. Its simple just for fun. Besides the source-code is free for everyone. I just like what he did with the code…

  5. i dont care what people can say about it being a copy or what but this man is a gun, instead you should be firing him with crazy ideas rather than demoralising this guy. He did something you didn`t do he made a difference, at least a couple of our youngsters can know that you do not have to be American to develop android apps. Thumbs up Chibvuri

    1. No-one implied you have to be American to develop apps. It actually you who seems to have that mentality, as you are the first to mention that. If you haven’t been following techzim . I guess you support Saith systems for “making” their own “Zimbabwean” car. The same criticisms applied to people who re-brand hardware and call it their own product, should be applied to software too. It’s even easier with software, so why should they get the credit?

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