Animal Crossing has stood as a monument to the success of Nintendo. People may wonder what is fun about going back and forth all day, weeding, and shaking trees? But once you throw yourself in this journey, you will find it very difficult to get rid of Animal Crossing. So where does that magic come from? Why are so many people playing Animal Crossing? Nothing occurs at random. While waiting for the latest New Horizons, let’s learn briefly about the beauty of this brilliant series.
THE BIRTH OF AN UNIQUE BRAND
Most of us remember Animal Crossing originating from the GameCube in 2002. That’s not entirely wrong, but if you dig deeper, this game series came forth in the days of Nintendo 64. Actually, in 2001, Doubutsu no Mori (Japanese name) was released exclusively for Nintendo 64 in Japan. The game was originally planned to be developed for 64DD but was later ported to a basic N64 machine because 64DD’s release date was continually delayed. The Animal Forest game on N64 has a real-time clock, something that even the N64 machine itself doesn’t have.
Since Nintendo 64 has reached the end of its lifecycle, GameCube has been released since 2001. In the same year, Nintendo upgraded the Doubutsu no Mori to Doubutsu no Mori + and put it on the GameCube in Japan. The Doubutsu no Mori + version was also translated and released for North America under the name Animal Crossing in 2002. A year later, in 2003, Japan continued to have another upgraded version named Doubutsu no Mori e + on GameCube.
A total of the first 4 versions of Animal Crossing include:
Doubutsu no Mori, Japanese version for Nintendo 64.
Doubutsu no Mori +, Japanese private upgrade, transferred to GameCube.
Animal Crossing, the translation version for the international market, made from the Doubutsu no Mori + and released on GameCube.
Doubutsu no Mori e +, Japanese private upgrade, released on GameCube.
Since then, there have been 7 versions of Animal Crossing released (including spin-off games). The upcoming Animal Crossing: New Horizon will be launched on Nintendo Switch on March 20, 2020.
WHY IS ANIMAL CROSSING GAME SO ADDICTIVE?
In Animal Crossing games, the player is the only human character while the rest are all anthropomorphized animals. In Animal Crossing, you have no specific tasks and tend to experience the time living in the village with many different activities such as collecting items, fishing, picking flowers. butterflies, decorate your home and interact with other characters (animals).
The time in the game is real-time determined by the calendar and the clock of the gaming machine. That is, if you adjust the clock in the machine following the actual time outside, the time in-game and in reality will be in sync. Some events in the game are also made to resemble holidays in real life.
One of the highlights of the game series is the ability to collect and customize. When it comes to decorating your home, a huge number of different furniture models, ranging from classic to modern, surreal to choose and decorate are available. Most of them can be purchased by Bell (in-game currency). To find Bell you don’t need to plow deep hoes like Harvest Moon (Story of Seasons) or go to work as The Sims, but mainly collect things to sell which could be fruits, shells, fish, insects, etc.
Not only the interior, but the player’s character can also change the appearance with countless costumes. Even there is a section for you to design your unique shirt.
NO WIN OR LOSE, ENDLESS PLAYTIME
We bet you could answer the question, “Is it hard to play Animal Crossing?” in a heartbeat. However, when it comes to questions such as “Have you won Animal Crossing yet?”, it will take you much longer to answer. When will you win Animal Crossing? Is it when you collect everything in the game or finish in one year? Animal Crossing does not have an end and you can play it as long as possible.
In the game, there are no mandatory duties such as killing the demon king or saving the world. Everything is up to the player. You can build a grand house, earn money, or enjoy a low-key life. The game development team aims to make players feel “want-to-do” instead of “have-to-do” like other games. So, every goal in the game has no constrained factors. Though you do nothing, life in the game is still going on.
Animal Crossing is a simulation game, and the miniature society in the game will reflect yourself. Each person’s experience in Animal Crossing is completely different. Maybe you like this set of furniture and buy it in your home, unlike others. You want to let the grass overgrown in the village to get close to the wild nature, but some gamers will clear away every bush they see. A small world will change for you, and a community will be formed by you.
Over time it gradually creates a connection between players and the game when you see your world differently day by day. That’s the unique thing that every gamer can create with Animal Crossing.
CHARACTERS, THE SOUL OF ANIMAL CROSSING
If the huge number of items is something for players to explore in the long run, then the characters (NPC) is the thing that will make you feel most attached. Communication is the soul of Animal Crossing. A Reddit member once calculated that the number of words in the game Animal Crossing: New Leaf (3DS) is more than all 7 Harry Potter stories and the Bible combined. Not only that, but the lines of the game are also wrestled with details, written to create emotions for the player.
Kotaku once asked Nintendo’s team if it was worth spending so much time working on the conversation, something that wasn’t even likely to be read? “Absolutely” is their solid answer. All of that effort is to create depth for the interaction between the player and the characters in the game, recreating a basic and extremely important element of society – Communication.
Besides, the cute theme of the game won the hearts of players. This is one of the strengths of Nintendo that just a few companies can match. Vibrant colors that are not flashy, weird but not terrible, with diverse details which characters differ greatly with each other.
Oddly enough, Nintendo’s brilliantly-colored titles that seem to be aimed at children are more popular with adult gamers. If the young choose the game for beautiful things, the older is kept by the relaxed nature of the game. With a few minutes inside the world of Animal Crossing, stress and zzs fatigue after long working hours seem to disappear.
While waiting for the New Horizons to release, you can download other versions on Play Store.