Animal Crossing New Horizons: An Introduction to Animal Crossing

Animal Crossing New Horizons: An Introduction to Animal Crossing


It might seem strange that someone who has been writing guides as long as I have has never played the Animal Crossing Series before now. It was a choice between DOOM Eternal and Animal Crossing in terms of starting a new guide (since I am also maintaining a guide on Destiny 2 and would be working on a Final Fantasy 7 Remake Guide/walkthrough). Animal Crossing seemed like a better fit of having a lot to document and plenty of events to experience. I also suspected a simpler story and just more managable as a long-term project. What I didn't realize was the experience that I was walking into with this game. Just how calm everything feels and that sense counts for a lot.


Let's talk about my introduction to Animal Crossing. The first Animal Crossing Game got introduced over in the US on the Gamecube. A younger friend of mine, who I'd play Super Smash Bros with, showed it me one time I was over at his house after I left for college. I liked the aesthetic but it just did not grab me. It wouldn't be until after college I encountered it again when a different friend was playing New Leaf on his 3DS. So, it's always just been there, a series I have known about, but never got into until now.


The story of Animal Crossing: New Horizons is simple enough. The Villager taken up on the Island Paradise package offered by Nook Travel. They can select from 1 of 4 islands offered by the twins Timmy and Tommy. The Island is given a name the first night in a party and then it is time to start building up the island. Tom Nook will have a few simple tasks for the Villager to complete. Eventually, you are given the goals of establishing a museum, creating the store Nook's Cranny, establishing Able Sisters Tailor Shop etc. The island grows as the Villager invites more people, improves their house and more. The island will flourish overall with plenty of daily attention.


The events throughout the year do make Animal Crossing stand out a bit. This is something that has caught me off guard as I dabble and document. I completely missed the museum rally documentation, having the Villager explore the museum and get plaques for finding the stamp stations. It was so small with a repetitive rewards. The Cherry Blossom season mixed with Bunny Days was a little much. The Cherry Blossom aspect was overshadowed by Bunny Days by a long shot. I love Easter and enjoyed the 2 appearances of Zipper T. Bunny but I have so many spare Bunny Day DIY recipes. Too many eggs left over. The smaller Earth Day event was a lot of fun to play through, and getting a lot of Nook Miles. There are also regular events with the Otter CJ visiting occasionally on Weekends for a Fishing Challenge. He also offers a seasonal fishing Tournament to catch a lot of fish for prizes in a time limit. The third Able sister will occasionally show up as well. This is Label who will offer a Fashion Challenge that the Villager can participate in to get Tailor's Tickets to redeem for clothes in their Able Sisters Store. There are enough events that I should not just list them off here because it would take the rest of the article's space!


Since this is being written in early June, this is in the start of Wedding Season. I've been having a blast going to Harv's Island and arranging a shoot for Reese and Cyrus. Always reminds me of my own wedding just over 5 years ago (at an amazing zoo, a fabulous drag queen officiant, and just so many near and dear people). It's like I get to enjoy a piece of that memory every day right now, sharing the experience with my wife again and these digital characters. Just seeing the joy of them is more than enough to remind me of those times.


Animal Crossing: New Horizons has been a lot of fun to play. It is overall simple, even if it did take me a little while to learn. There are still little things I'm learning, like I can use “Y” to quickly fill holes that I've dug. It is nice having the time to simply relax and look into things. I like spending the time to talk with the neighbors daily, visiting other Villager's islands and learning more about the Stalk Market and how to make enough bells to pay off my final, 7th, house expansion. While not very actively pursuing the best island rating of 5 stars, it would be nice to get there eventually. For now, I enjoy the “wild” portions of my island as well as the gardens and groves I have cultivated. I am especially proud of the bamboo grove at the top of my island since it took so long to get started. I need to thank Daisy Mae for giving my first shoots of Bamboo after I bought a lot of Turnips. There are thriving communities online that have players helping each other to trade DIY recipes, sell Turnips at the best prices and get their Dream Residents (commonly referred to as Dreamies).


Here's a fun fact for those with the original Animal Crossing and a working Gamecube (sold mine off since I never had a GBA player). After the original Animal Crossing has loaded on a Gamecube, once the Nintendo logo has shown, you can take the disc out. The game will just keep running fine. It will stay loaded until you power down the system. The disc is required after a reset as well. The entire game has loaded into the RAM of the Gamecube. The original game was built for the N64 and the Gamecube has a LOT more power and RAM.

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