(Pocket-lint) - Tiny Wings 2.0 has already hit the iTunes App Store in New Zealand, and will be going live around the globe as each time zone strikes midnight - and it's not quite what some expected. Rather than a complete sequel, the new installment by sole developer Andreas Illiger is actually a free update to his original game.
There are a couple of new modes included in the Tiny Wings 2.0 update: Flight School, which pits you in a race against three other leaping birds, and, for the iPad only, a new multi-player split-screen mode called Hill Party. Two players can compete in the latter using the same iPad, so that's pretty cool.
The iPad also gets its own Tiny Wings HD version of the game for the first time. Previously, to play it on the iPad you had to double size the iPhone version, making everything look pixelated (and not in a kitsch way, like a Nimblebit game).
Now the game will even support Retina displays, and from the grabs and video we've seen so far (made by TouchArcade) it looks great.
What is surprising though is that Illiger didn't decide to package the new features as an entirely new game, and therefore charge for it separately - on the iPhone at least. He did explain himself, however, to TouchArcade: "I [never] clarified if it will be an update or a separate app before the release because then my fans will be happy on the release day when they will get it for free," he said.
"I worked on the 2.0 version for the last 12 months and everyone told me I should make a separate app out of it and sell it again (because it is almost a new game and I would earn a lot more money). It was a heavy decision for me to give away this new version for free but it feels right."
It's a bold decision, but if he decides to create an Android version, Illiger could always make money that way. That's a hint, by the way.
Are you a Tiny Wings fan? Do you think the new features are enough? Let us know in the comments below...