I don't use emoji very often, but I did think the Google Hangouts-style emoticons were rather adorable. Following the 4.4.2 update, the graphics set used for emoji have been enabled in the stock keyboard, but in these rather unattractive cliche-looking versions which have also overridden the ones available in Hangouts. Is there any way I can get a Google Hangouts-style icon pack or something? All of the Google Play searches I've attempted returned mostly emoji keyboards which are NOT what I am looking for.
Needs root access: You can change the
AndroidEmoji.ttf font that can be found in
/system/fonts/. XDA has a copy of different Emoji fonts you can use.
An easier alternative would be to use Emoji Switcher (requires root).