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Happy the Melancholy Sausage on iPhone

Happy the Melancholy Sausage is an iPhone app that provides seconds of fun. I am aware that iPhone apps are not known for their complex algorithms but the simplicity of this “game” is insulting. Happy, the games mascot, is a cartoon hotdog, that’s the entirety of his character; he’s just a little sausage with eyes and a bun. You get to control him but it’s not really a game, there are no levels or points or enemies, you just move him around with your fingers across the screen as he wiggles a little bit, that’s the Happy experience. If you so choose you may replace the default stock photo of a cloud background with one of your own pictures and move him around that. If you press the button with the music note a horrible royalty free jazz diddy starts playing and happy dances (i.e. wiggles a bit more than usual). You can press that button as many times as you want but it won’t make the loneliness go away. Neither will buying the expansion pack. Which is just a set of racially insensitive hats you can provide Happy with.
Now this game is innocent in theory but if you think about it it’s terrifying. Remember the name of the app in full is “Happy the Melancholy Sausage”. Melancholy. The dictionary defines melancholy: as a deep, pensive and long lasting sadness. The word seems out of place, Happy doesn’t appear to be particularly sad, he constantly grins and blushes in a very punchable way and that make me sad but he appears to be as his name suggests, very happy. But nonetheless the word melancholy made it in to the title. This could simply mean the game designers do not posses an eighth grade level of vocabulary and do not know what melancholy means, which to me seems likely, but the alternative is much scarier.
Happy is trapped. Happy is damned to some sort of cloud stock photo sausage-hell where he is forced to spend eternity being your personal play thing as you drag him across your pictures from your trip to Cancun and make him dance. The smile is a façade, he’s not really happy. But some outside being is forcing him to fake it. So he smiles and blushes and giggles all throughout the day, to avoid punishment. But the second you exit out of the app Happy burst down in tears. As he in not content he is in a constant state of melancholy; an eternal sadness. And the only way you could ever know this is the subtle hint in the title.



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