WARNING: This game contains content that is highly addictive and may cause you to forget about the real world for long periods of time.
Hello everyone! Today I am reviewing Animal Crossing: New Leaf
for the 3DS. I absolutely LOVE Animal Crossing games. Maybe it’s because I like to collect things and AC has by far the biggest collection of things in any video game. Maybe I like to continuously expand my house and fill it with so many things I can’t even open the door (Hoarders: Animal Crossing Edition).
Either way, New Leaf is probably my favourite so far in the series.
Nintendo has introduced many new things in the series this time around. Firstly, there is Main Street – similar to the city in AC: City Folk. Main Street is a bit different, though, allowing new shops to open up over time and allowing you – the mayor – to build places there, as well.
But I am jumping ahead of myself. For those new to AC, let me fill you in.
Animal Crossing is a game where you control a character (name and gender up to you) in a village filled with animal neighbours. The game takes advantage of the system’s time/date system to change the time of year it is (snowing in December, sunny in June). You usually arrive with no money, no home, and no way of getting either, then Tom Nook (the local shopkeeping raccoon) shows up and offers you a part time job (amongst other not-so-great things, like a giant house loan).
So you continue on from there, completing your job and paying off your house, until you have established quite a collection of furniture, clothes, and wallpapers. You can befriend the villagers, annoy them until they move out, or completely ignore them and watch for the hilarious messages that pop up whenever you turn the game on next.
In AC:NL, there are various new features. Firstly, you are no longer the vagabond forced into cheap labour by the greedy raccoon. You become – by an odd turn of events – the mayor of the village (which you can name). As mayor, you have a collection of duties to perform, such as constructing town projects, keeping the village clean, being a good neighbour, and monitoring ordinances.
Note: Up to four players can live in the village you have created, but only you can be mayor. They may also move out onto a new copy of Animal Crossing if they so desire, but that’s kinda mean.
Unlike in the other Animal Crossing games, you can now wear shoes and socks. You can store a multitude of things in your closets. You can go diving at the island and catch deep-sea fish. There are fortune cookies sold in the shop (purchasable by play coins) that give you cool Nintendo things for your home. You can sit on benches and use megaphones to annoy your neighbours (annoying neighbours is fun, okay!)
The upgrading in this game is far more advanced than previous games, as well. Not only can you add extra space, an upstairs and downstairs to your house, but you can add extra rooms, too! You can put rooms to the left and right, plus upgrade them further. Tom Nook has opened up a renovating shop in New Leaf, where you can change the exterior of your home quite a bit. There are many different themes, but whenever I see something that looks remotely medieval, I always buy it. (P.S. there is a castle upgrade you can buy when you finish adding all rooms to your home!)
The Re-tail shop is a new place to visit, run by two llamas. Reese will help you with the recycling (selling and buying) while Cyrus will remodel furniture that you own (after he wakes up), another new features of New Leaf! You can even place your own designs on furniture with his help.
AC:NL also has co-op, so you can invite your friends to your town or you can go to theirs (and wreck havoc). The island is always a fun place to go with friends, because for the first time in AC you can play mutiplayer games. The island features many co-op games to play, and most of them are quite fun. You also get island coins for your mini adventures, which is the only form of money they will accept if you want to buy island things!
Remember the Able Sisters? Well they are back and with a QR code machine! If you talk to the sisters and befriend them, they will set up a QR machine in their shop that allows you to snap QR codes to collect new designs. It’s quite a nifty feature.
A definite great addition to the series, but forget about annoying your friends by digging holes around them. They can now press “Y” to kick the holes in. :/
I recommend this game to anyone who is a fan of the series (or the Harvest Moon series). I bought it several weeks ago now and I am still turning it on every day to check for new items, see what’s new, and work on my upgrading (I am NOT obsessed!)
If you’re a collector (like, a really, really devoted AC collector) you can check out Animal Crossing: New Leaf: Prima Official Game Guide. It has TONS of information about the game, plus a guide to all of the furniture collections. It’s a great and helpful guide for an Animal Crossing player, especially since it’s a new game and not much information is out on the web yet.