Happy Feet is an action-adventure game based on the movie of the same name developed by Artificial Mind and Movement and published by Midway Games for the Nintendo GameCube, Wii, Nintendo DS, Game Boy Advance, PlayStation 2, and PC.
The game was planned for release on Xbox, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3, but those versions were canceled.
Why It's Not Happy
- You just play the same three minigames of belly sledding, swimming, and dancing over and over again throughout the entire game, kinda like Club Penguin.
- Speaking of which, the dancing minigames are a ripoff of "Dance Dance Revolution".
- Repetitive areas during swimming and belly sledding levels. You could even come across the same environment two missions in a row but with different objectives and it stays the same regardless.
- You earn gold medals to unlock the "supposed" extras but they're just the dance levels you already saw, just without any gameplay which makes it completely pointless to collect gold medals in the first place.
- The instruction manual states that gold medals unlock items, but it’s really the completely aforementioned pointless extras showing the dance levels without any gameplay.
- The character Ramon and his heavy Mexican accent is insulting, but phonetically spelling out the stereotypical speech in the subtitles isn't amusing--it's offensive. For example, "you" is sometimes spelled as "joo," and the fact that it isn't consistent just draws more attention to it when the lines are presented in that manner.
- You have to use the d-pad to navigate the menus because doing so with the left analog stick doesn’t work which is really weird.
- The soundtrack slows down whenever you fail a level, especially the dance levels which will progress if you continue to do so.
- There are weird design choices for the dance levels such as in the "Somebody to Love" level, you have to tap out rhythms of two, even though the song beat is in three. In the same level, the mini game ends and you exit the scene before the song is done which is a letdown.
- The objectives may differ sometimes but the core gameplay remains the same no matter what.
- The Family Mode is bad and there's no mode which allows you to belly sled race against another player via splitscreen which is so boring. Plus, it could turn your friends into enemies.
- The character models move stiffly and the speech movements is poorly synched with the facial movements.
- The lack of transition between the end of a level and cutscene is just jarring - it just cuts off immediately without any fade.
- You even have to use the d-pad for the dance levels because the analog stick and buttons won’t work at all and it doesn’t support action pads.
- There are obvious seams where some polygons meet, as well as a ton of blurry textures.
- There’s no way you can have fun with the game in any way; you can easily get bored with it after just ten minutes.
- No support for progressive scan or 16:9 widescreen. Other games that were out at the time, such as the Tony Hawk and Super Monkey Ball franchises, had this support.
- Very short length, at about three hours.
- Good soundtrack.
- Some of the snowy environments are nice and feature falling icicles and destructible objects.
- The belly-sledding levels have a decent sense of speed.
- The actors from the film reprise their roles, and they do a decent job.
- The GBA version is decent and more superior, as it is just a simple side-scrolling platformer.
All versions of the game have scores between 0.50 and 2.00/5 on GameFAQs, and it has Metacritic scores of 49, 46, and 42 for the PlayStation 2, Wii, and PC versions respectively.