Now they’re back with Happy Game, which launched in time for Halloween! Hurray! As it’s just so gosh darned horrifying!
The Happy Game by Amanita Design
Warning: Happy Game isn’t really about happiness. It’s more of a psychological horror kind of romp. So, yeah, the title is a lie!
However, there are many elements of absurdly dark humour in here. That evens out the terror a fair bit, really.
So, okay! Happy Game. One of the most notable things about Amanita Design’s work is the distinctive visual style.
This carries over from other titles like Creaks (2020), but this is also a distinctly Amanita Design type of adventure.
Players take control of a hapless, naïve little git. He falls asleep and enters a realm of petrifying nightmares.
Like, so bad you can only presume this kid is seriously mentally disturbed.
Luckily, you get every opportunity to guide the poor diminutive sod back towards happiness. And you do so over the course of each point-and-click segment with puzzle solving.
The puzzles don’t have any real formula behind them, you often just use some logic and/or random chance to figure out what depraved combination you need.
And that can involve “happy” bunnies eating carrots, so you can ring a bell, and then a super massive bunny arrives to consume the “happy” bunnies alive.
The next stage and the blood-splattered remains of the “happy” bunnies are on the floor, all grinning inanely.
Sigmund Freud would have enjoyed dissecting this kid’s psychological makeup if his brain is managing this stuff.
If you’ve played an Amanita Design title before you’ll know what’s in store. Lots of weirdly wonderful concepts.
And, in the case of Happy Game, they just happen to play out in particularly dark and disturbing fashion.
It’s short. You can have the thing completed in an hour.
Plus, it’s more of an interactive experience than a video game. Something to watch unfold, often with a worrisome sense of dread for the poor kid you’re tormenting.
We like the thing! It’s a visual treat and brings with it enough macabre comical stuff to fuel your nightmares throughout the winter.
Happy Game’s Delightful Soundtrack
The soundtrack is sparse but effective, conjuring up a general feeling of misplaced happiness and unease.
It’s by the Czech rock band DVA, who also completed the soundtracks for Chuchel and Botanicula (2012).
But there’s also this awesome little number we like a lot.
It plays out on the aforementioned “happy” bunnies section, which is on a perpetual loop arena of much disturbing variety and excessively vibrant colours.
That track you could have on a loop throughout your day and it’d be the perfect fit for any situation you come across.
In our opinion, anyway. Got a problem with that? Except some psycho bunnies to come round and sort you out!