I completely agree. The potential is sky high with this game.
Also if the animals are being downplayed in this version, perhaps in the future we could work on another version which heavily favours the usage and is designed with them more in mind. While the animals are definitely a main feature of the original game, and a lot of parts are specifically tailored to them, some parts feel kinda forced or mundane, or you barely get to use the animal, etc.
I particularly enjoyed the Bee platforming levels and mechanics, but also kinda wished the Gorilla and Mole sections were more interesting and lasted longer.
I'm getting ahead of myself and am still really looking forward to your version being released but it was just food for thought.
Sure, that sounds like a cool idea also! However, I have a lot of other projects that I need to do also so maybe somewhere down the road!
Regarding the animal usage, I agree that many parts of the original game dropped the ball on this one. They're either uninspired or under used...and some animals and the need to constantly change from one to another in the original can be outright annoying at times. Given the fact that I've overhauled the game to use Nemo and the Wand much more, many animals that use a regular attack(gorilla, mouse) have been greatly reduced as Nemo can do the same with the Wand weapon...plus it has the charge attack! But I did leave in the more interesting ones such as, like you said, the bumble bee and the fish, etc. I tried to make the animal riding in this hack more unique and interesting!
Hope it all works out and you and everyone will enjoy the hack!