Each night before I go to bed, I check in on Hacker News to get a brain dump of the latest Internet geekery. The last story I read before drifting off was a fun post by John Skeet titled “OMG Ponies!!! (Aka Humanity: Epic Fail)”. And when I woke up this morning, I was pleasantly surprised to find a fully-formed startup idea in my head.
Nope. Unfortunately, it was this: “OMG! Ponies!”
Today’s idea is a social game called “OMG! Ponies!”. The premise is as follows: A new Facebook poll indicated that ponies had dropped from first all the way down to eighth on the “World’s Cutest Stuff” list. Understandably, the world pony population was pissed, and is now exacting revenge by seeking to eradicate each of the top seven cute items on the list.
Your job, as commander of an elite group of pony assassins, is to prep your squadron for an epic cute-on-cute battle for world domination. Train your pony in mixed martial arts to take on the Fluffy Bunny in the Octagon. Earn enough money to buy a blowtorch for your showdown against the Teddy Bear. Gather your friends and level up your squad for the final fight: a wicked chainsaw melee against the Magical Crying Unicorn.
The game play would be similar to other social games on Facebook, such as Farmville. Players work to level up their character to unlock new challenges, and can earn (or buy) in-game currencies to purchase new weapons. Users can team up with their friends to build bigger squads. It’s sort of like Mafia Wars, except replace “violent gang banger” with “adorably precious pony”.
Despite the initial WTF element of this idea, I do actually think there is some merit here. The game would have a mixture of humor and violence, which are two good elements of a successful viral social game. Plus, the uniqueness of the idea would be enough to get an initial kick start of buzz. Finally, now that Facebook is flooded with overly cheery, cute cartoony apps, this could capitalize on the counter-culture app backlash that is almost certain to materialize.
I’d definitely love to hear your comments on this one. And if you’re not already, you should follow me on Twitter at @astartupaday.