Today a Google Doodle celebrates Halloween with an interactive logo on the search engine's homepage. Clicking on various features in the Doodle causes the image to come to life, complete with a spooky soundtrack.
Google’s Halloween logo starts out with just a few animated pieces; namely, the skeleton and crow. The skeleton hangs in front of a row of ominous townhouses, while the crow is perched atop the first roof. Jack-o-lanterns and pumpkins line the steps and leaves litter the sidewalk. Users with sound turned on can hear wind whistling in the background. (To turn sound on or off, see the volume control at the far right of the image.)
The skeleton points to the left of the image, towards the first of five doors. Hovering over different elements of the picture reveals which are clickable and interactive.
Before the first door, a set of garbage cans are the first interactive feature. Clicking on the garbage cans causes a cat inside to yowl and stick his head out, before ducking back into the can. [insert halloween doodle 2 left aligned]
Hovering over the first blue door on the left causes it to shake and bang, as though someone (or something?) were trying to escape. Clicking on this first door reveals a blue cyclops creature, with long tentacles forming the shape of - what else? - the first “G” in the Google logo.
After the creature is revealed, it stays active, constantly bouncing in the doorway. Each subsequent click sends it flying in the doorway, to spin around and make its way back to the shape of the “G.”
The second door trembles and knocks as the first, but this one reveals two round creatures, each with one eye that follows the user’s cursor around the image. Clicking on these creatures causes them to blink, complete with a sound effect.
These two form the two “o”s in the Google logo, the first in red and the second in yellow.
The third door, marked with the address 13, reveals a light blue ghost, with a thin sheet covering it’s “g” shaped body. This lowercase “g” is the fourth letter in the Google logo.
Clicking on the ghost causes him to disappear in a puff of smoke, before rising again from the concrete stairs, howling, “Boo!” As each new door opens, the ones before remain open with their Halloween characters on display.
The fourth door, second to last, creaks open to reveal the groaning, mummified “l” beneath. Clicking it again causes the doors to close, hiding the mummy. Each subsequent clicks closes or opens the doors.
Finally, the fifth door unveils a purple blob-type creature, with a crooked smile and glowing yellow eyes. This doesn’t look much like the final “e” of the Google logo at all... that is, until you click on it. Activating this animation causes the blob to open his mouth wide, to reveal the fangs and red tongue inside. This tongue forms the shape of a lowercase “e.”
Each of the doorways can be animated until the user clicks on the cat in the garbage can again. Doing so ends the sequence by sending the cat running across the sidewalk, in front of the houses. As the cat passes, each door slams shut, hiding the creatures within.
The logo goes to the search engine results page for “Happy Halloween!”
Last year’s Halloween Google Doodle was impressive. It featured an eight-hour time lapse of six 1000 lb pumpkins getting carved at their Mountain View headquarters.
The Doodle is available in the US, Canada and the UK, but may not be visible in all countries.
What do you think of the Halloween doodle for 2012? Share your thoughts in the comments!