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Animal Crossing

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Attack on Titan X Animal Crossing: New Leaf


The ultimate crossover
Sep 05
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Attack on Titan meets Animal Crossing: New Leaf. The villager face on Eren killed me. Is Attack on New Leaf the best parody yet? [Japanator]
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

Free Animal Crossing Plaza out now on Wii U


'I love flowers' -- Nintendo president Satoru Iwata
Aug 07
// Jordan Devore
While it's no Super Mario Bros. 3 on 3DS, darn it, the newly-announced Animal Crossing Plaza is cool in its own right. As demonstrated during this morning's Nintendo Direct, this free app gives series fans a place to congrega...
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Rhymedown Spectacular: Pipes of Passion


The brains behind Jimquisition and Zero Punctuation get lyrical
Jul 24
// Jim Sterling
This week, both poems get pretty damn dark. Yahtzee talks of animals and crossings, while your ol' pal here tells a tale of passion and revenge.  There is a lot of emotion in these poems, and I think we all can learn a little bit about ourselves and the human condition, for God's sake. 
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Animal Crossing: New Leaf sales surpass 500,000 units


Plus see how else Nintendo performed in June
Jul 19
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Good news, everybody! Animal Crossing: New Leaf has sold more than 505,000 combined physical and digital units. More than 20% of the total sales came from the digital sales, in fact. Nintendo says that internal sales trackers...
New Leaf orchestrated photo
New Leaf orchestrated

Animal Crossing New Leaf opening theme orchestrated


It makes me want to leave work and just catch bugs all day
Jul 17
// Darren Nakamura
The team that put together The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses tour are back at it with music from a Nintendo franchise. This time, the Star Pop Orchestra puts its strings and woodwinds to Animal Crossing: New Lea...

Everything I need to know I learned from Animal Crossing

Jul 13 // Jonathan Holmes
Responsibility isn't real The first thing that happens in most Animal Crossing games is an in-game tutorial where you are tasked to engage in a variety of "jobs" in order to learn the various systems. You'll have to write some letters, meet some talking animals, and do other odds and ends. It's the worst part of the game. Almost everyone hates it, including the player character. After all the tasks are completed and the player is "fired" from their job, they raise their fist in victory. Unemployment is a godsend. Making your own way in life, unburdened by the shackles of allegiance or subjugation to an employer is the path to self discovery and meaningful experience.  That feeling when you first step out of the tutorial with endless things you could do but nothing you have to do -- that's adult life. There are no prearranged missions or linear paths (though plenty of "grown ups" try to follow them anyway). Any semblance of prearrangement is just an illusion. Keeping that in mind can help turn a grueling chore into an exercise in freedom. It's up to you to find out what will happen next in your life. It's up to you to determine how to get there. Chasing shadows is a labor of love, and the key to riches So if Animal Crossing is about being unemployed, how do you make ends meet? How do you get the things in life that you think you need? The things that you want? There are many answers to that, but the richest Animal Crossing players I know got there by: 1) Accepting the fact that success is never assured 2) Knowing that those who enjoy the journey are most likely to arrive at the best destination You see a shadow in the water. It could be a Coelacanth (worth 15,000 Bells), but chances are its just a Sea Bass (worth 120 Bells). If all you want is to get rich, you may not bother to try to catch it, as it's not statistically probable to be "worth your time." Even if you do try to catch it, you may not succeed on the first try, or even the second or third. You may even pull up an old tire, which actually costs you money to dispose of.  This will be enough to drive some people to just do favors for other villagers for money, or worse, just go around shaking trees for loose change. These are the safer routes, the less strenuous, the less adventurous. Only those who truly love fishing will keep at it through all the old tires, through the hordes of Sea Bass, to achieve greatness in acquiring the world's Coelacanths, Napoleonfish, and Blue Marlins. Of course, spending more time fishing in the rain, and keeping an eye out for suspicious-looking fins never hurt, but only those are willing to let their bobbers hit the water in the first place will ever discover all the sea's mysteries (and the riches that may come with them). Authority isn't necessary in a world where mutual respect is standard In Animal Crossing: New Leaf, you're the mayor? You know what that means? Eh... nothing really. You "fund raise" on your own in order to put new guidelines in place for how long stores stay open, or not. You can pay for new landmarks to be built or for new businesses to open up, or not. You have the power to make changes in your community, but only if you've got the money to back it up.  As for "political" power or hierarchy, it's relatively non-existent. Other villagers may ask you to do things, or you may ask one of them to leave, but those power plays are never a sure thing, nor are they enforced by any sorts of "laws." That's because in Animal Crossing, everyone has gentle, surface-level relationships based on a culture where the boundaries of others are always respected. The worst thing you can do to someone in Animal Crossing is insult their taste in clothes, or bop them on the head with a bug catching net. Do that enough times, and they'll just leave on their own, remembering only the good times you shared with them.  I can only hope that someday the human race will evolve to be as naturally empathetic and civilized as the forest dwelling villagers of Animal Crossing. Just show up and don't be a jerk The amount of money, material goods, and wildlife you can acquire in Animal Crossing can seem endless, but in the end, it's all just a bunch of stuff. The feeling of success and fulfillment that comes from these achievements can be fleeting. Attempting to chase that feeling with more money and more stuff can lead to even more intense feelings of meaninglessness.  So what else is there? After your house size is maxed out and your catalog of fish is complete, what do you do? Maybe finding a place of affection in the lives of your peers will give you some feeling of purpose, but how do you do that? In Animal Crossing, you are powerless to invoke a witty rejoinder or hilarious anecdote about Shania Twain's distaste for mayonnaise. There is no banter. There are no popularity contests. You can get a badge for catching a lot of fish, or you can impress Gracie with your fashion sense, but that's not going to get you any friends.  The way to get others to appreciate you in Animal Crossing is much easier than all that. You can win the heart of just about everyone in the game, from that orange-headed cat down the street to that high-class pigeon in the cafe, just by showing up. You don't even have to say anything to them. In fact, most of the time you can't say anything. All you can do is listen, but listening is more than enough. If you make a point to give a friend some attention every day, and be sure to never do anything awful to them, they'll grow attached to you. They may do you special favors and tell you their innermost feelings, and they'll miss you when you're gone. All just for showing up, being nice, and being consistent. Those of you having trouble making friends would do wise to follow this mandate, as there is no one on earth who is immune to its charms. Time is inescapable  Time is the key ingredient to everything in Animal Crossing. It's the way to make friends, make money, and make your dreams come true. It's also your greatest enemy. Time is the only thing that can stop you from catching that fish you want. If you aren't able to put the needed time into looking for it in the time of the month that the fish is in season, you will fail at catching the fish. If your favorite villager is a cat with an orange for a head, it may be just a matter of time before she decides to move out. You only have the winter months to build enough snowmen to get the entire snowman set of furniture. Run out of time, and you'll have to wait until next year.  There's no stopping time in Animal Crossing. Every second you aren't in the game seeking a new opportunity is a second that you'll never get back. Some will try to speed up time, impatient for what may be waiting for them in the future. To them, the slowness of time feels like the enemy, though the real enemy is their own driving ambition. The passing of time is a blessing and a curse. It provides new opportunities as it takes others away. The way to best appreciate that process is to remember your past, be mindful of your future, and most importantly, savor every second that you pass through, as it's time you'll never get back again. If nothing is important, then everything is important Animal Crossing is about minutia. It is about stacking minute after minute, second after second, with moments of no real consequence. So why is it that people can't stop playing the game. Why are people choosing to "grind" for beetles in Animal Crossing over saving the human race in The Last of Us? Why has Twitter exploded with #acnl tagged tweets about meeting unattractive bears, getting fake-hair cuts, picking "perfect" fruit, and any number of other incredibly exciting, completely unimportant events? In addition to all the charms and concepts already detailed in the article above, Animal Crossing works to engage the player by setting the bar for stimulation so low that almost any event feels like a major milestone. Everything in the game, from the most expensive couch to the least valuable stinkbug is on equal footing in terms of how much mental real estate it may find in the players psyche. For me, getting the best stuff or angling the rarest fish doesn't mean a whole lot. My personal mission became catching a Banded Dragonfly. It was a calling that found value by my own standards and by my standards alone. The game didn't tell me it was important. I decided that it was, for reasons unknown. I spent hours on looking for one. I cursed fate when they eluded me. I felt lost and hopeless when they failed to appear, day after day. Does it make any rational sense for me to become that emotionally invested in capturing a fictional insect. Sure. In the grand cosmic scheme of things, catching a Banded Dragonfly is no more or less important than becoming the President of the United States. Either way, we're all on a giant rock floating through space, born to die, bound to intemperate reality through limitations of our five meager senses and slowly rotting, deeply flawed organic skull CPUs.  So if everything is equally unimportant, why do anything? Does anything have meaning? If so, how do you measure how much meaning? What's the difference between a "guilty pleasure" and  "breathtaking work of staggering genius"? Who are we to say what is important and what isn't? The answer is, things find importance based on how we choose to internally value them. As flawed as it may be, that's the only standard we have. Society will try to teach us otherwise, that becoming certain things (cool, sexy, rich, powerful, smart) are more valuable than just catching butterflies. That's a fallacy. There is no universally objective set of values that you can use to measure the importance of a life experience, and therefore, every life experience shares the same potential for importance.  [Flag by Kriven4437] I would have never been inspired to write this article if it weren't for the experience I had catching a Banded Dragonfly yesterday. This article may go on to inspire someone else to write something about what they value. Their writing may go on to be read by a president, or a queen, or a warlord. Their writing may change that warlord's way of governorship, which in turn could change the bent of world politics, which could lead to the death or survival of millions.  So the next time you're trying to catch a Golden Stag and someone tells you to stop playing that stupid game about nothing, tell them you're changing the world Kony 2012-style and to not cramp your style.
Animal Crossing photo
The Dao of K.K.
[Images by Sarah Thomas] Over a year ago, I annoyed a lot of people by announcing that the term "art game" is stupid because it is overly vague and easily misconstrued, worsens the ever increasing problem of class-ism in vide...

New Leaf photo
New Leaf

You need to hear this Animal Crossing: New Leaf cover


Take care of all your chores now, understand?
Jul 09
// Jordan Devore
Trips to the island in Animal Crossing: New Leaf will never be the same after listening to these Kapp'n covers by YouTube user misterrandell. Hauntingly beautiful, yet at the same time uplifting. He says he's been "totally o...
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

Rest this Animal Crossing bag on your hip, sirs


DJ K.K. looks better than you
Jul 07
// Jonathan Holmes
It's been interesting to watch Animal Crossing go from being perceived as a weird "kiddie" game that most people bought just for the old NES games to something appreciated by good looking adults across the world.  Case i...
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The Villager pays a visit to Skyrim


Oh god no
Jul 06
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Such innocence and bloodshed, yet that smile never goes away.
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

The dark secret of Animal Crossing's Pigeon Milk revealed


Brewster's secret additive isn't what you think
Jun 29
// Jonathan Holmes
One of the more interesting bits of evocative minutia in the Animal Crossing series comes from the player's potential relationship with Brewster, the local coffee barista. It's hard to win the favor of this high cla...
Deals photo
Deals

Amazon discounts Animal Crossing: New Leaf and more


Slew of 3DS titles on sale now!
Jun 29
// Wesley Ruscher
[Update: Looks like Amazon has sold out on Animal Crossing: New Leaf, but other 3DS titles are still currently available. Better act fast!] If my Facebook feed has been any indication, then everyone (their moms included) alre...
Animal Crossing remixes photo
Animal Crossing remixes

Allow K.K. and Friends to touch your musical soul


Animal Crossing remix album by Ben Briggs and ectogemia
Jun 24
// Tony Ponce
Ladies and gentlemen, I am playing Animal Crossing for the first time ever. I scored a copy of New Leaf, popped it into my 3DS, and immediately fell deep into Tom Nook's financial pit of despair. I can tell this game is going...
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

Only the lonely don't own Animal Crossing: New Leaf


Simon and Garfunkel would be proud
Jun 23
// Jonathan Holmes
Times are tough for those in certain circles that that don't have the new Animal Crossing. Depending on who you run with on the internet, your Tumblr, Facebook, and Twitter feeds could currently be filled to the brim with pic...
Reggie's home tour photo
Reggie's home tour

Reggie's Animal Crossing home has his face on a bed


Cribs: Nintendo of America COO edition
Jun 21
// Steven Hansen
Have you ever wondered how the other half live? Wonder no more. Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime gives an all access look at his Animal Crossing: New Leaf home in this adorable video. Plus, he drops some proper...
Wii Fit Trainer photo
Wii Fit Trainer

Japanese artists think Wii Fit Trainer is smokin'


Gotta love that bleached Michael Jackson skin
Jun 19
// Tony Ponce
The fourth Smash Bros. was only announced last week, but fans the world over have already contributed a wealth of art based on the three new characters. However, Japanese art community pixiv has taken a particularly big shine...
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

Animal Crossing sets record sales on Nintendo eShop in US


Quadruples weekly Nintendo 3DS hardware sales
Jun 13
// Kyle MacGregor
Animal Crossing: New Leaf is kind of a big deal. The Nintendo 3DS exclusive has sold more than four million units in Japan to date and is already off to a hot start in North America in its first week on the market. "The digit...
New releases photo
New releases

New releases: The Last of Us is here at last


Plus Animal Crossing and not much else
Jun 10
// Fraser Brown
There won't be many games threatening to draw your attention away from the spectacle of E3 this week, but what we are getting is rather splendid.  The Last of Us seems to have impressed just about everyone, including th...
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

Retro games in Animal Crossing 'not happening ever again'


Pooh Pooh on Clu Clu Land
Jun 09
// Jonathan Holmes
When people that don't really like Animal Crossing talk about what they want in a new Animal Crossing, they often call back to the GameCube title's inclusion of playable NES games (Legend of Zelda, Super Mario Bros., Punch-Ou...
Animal Crossing: New Leaf photo
Animal Crossing: New Leaf

Animal Crossing: New Leaf out now via 3DS eShop


Hits store shelves tomorrow, but Iwata recommends digital version
Jun 08
// Kyle MacGregor
Animal Crossing: New Leaf is now available via the Nintendo 3DS eShop. Sure, the game will be available in stores starting tomorrow, but Nintendo president Satoru Iwata seems to think people should go for the digital ver...
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Nintendo World will transform into Animal Crossing town


Makeover for Animal Crossing: New Leaf
Jun 05
// Dale North
To celebrate the release of 3DS game Animal Crossing: New Leaf Nintendo will be transforming the Nintendo World store into the Animal Crossing town. How amazing is that? I mean, will Mr. Resetti be there? Fruit just layi...

Review: Animal Crossing: New Leaf

Jun 04 // Jim Sterling
Animal Crossing: New Leaf (3DS)Developer: Nintendo EAD Group No. 2Publisher: NintendoReleased: June 9, 2013 (NA) / June 14, 2013 (EU)MSRP: $34.99 Animal Crossing: New Leaf is not a political thriller of intrigue and seduction. While you get to be the mayor of your very own town, your new career still involves indulging the inane babble of twee bipedal dogs and selling bananas to raccoons. Indeed, being the mayor appears to have very little effect on one's daily life.  As always, you arrive in a town populated by self-interested little bastards, and obtain a house courtesy of the debt-hungry Tom Nook. As with every game in the series, your primary goal is to earn money by collecting and selling debris, in order to pay off the loan, build a bigger house, and continue the cycle of owing money to a forest creature.  This core will be instantly recognizable to those who have played any game in the series, and if you wanted more of the same, you'll be absolutely well served. Yet again you can collect fish, bugs, and fossils to give to the museum, you can plant trees, water flowers, and buy new items of clothing. You can send letters to animals, get invited to their houses, or deliver sundry artifacts from one resident to another. Every now and then, you'll get visits from Lyle the art dealer, or the turnip selling warthog, and holiday events all occur in real time.  [embed]254835:48889:0[/embed] The familiar makes up the vast majority of the experience, so if you were hoping for an all-new game, you might be disappointed. Of course, if your Animal Crossing desires extend solely to "more Animal Crossing," that's exactly what you'll get with the misleadingly titled New Leaf. The contents of the package are far from revolutionary, but there's plenty of it to indulge in.   The obvious big changes come with mayoral duties that are, unfortunately, not quite as enriching as they could have been. It takes a few days (all in real time) before you can actually do anything as mayor, as you'll need to get your house built and jump through a few hoops first. Once you do, your main role is to decide upon an ordinance for the town, and commission public works -- both of which simply function as slightly tweaked versions of the old loan repayment dynamic.  Ordinances slightly alter the way the town operates. For instance, selecting Bell Boom will improve the economy, which means you can sell items in stores for a higher price (though stores will charge more too). Beautiful Town makes animals more likely to plant flowers and reduces weed growth. Early Bird makes things happen earlier in the morning, while Night Owl does the opposite. These changes are subtle and merely add additional minor perks, but it has to be said that Bell Boom can be quite useful for those trying to pay off their loans.  Public works are where players really get to feel like they're doing something of note. Choosing from a list of predetermined structures, the mayor can commission new buildings and environmental decorations, from bridges to simple benches and street lamps. Here, the town can be populated with interesting things, such as a camp site that brings in visiting animals, and a new display area for the town museum. Being able to commission bridges is especially useful, especially in towns where rivers break up important areas of the environment, and you can place things (barring important shop additions) anywhere in town, provided you have enough space. Both mayoral activities, however, are dependent on cash. It costs 20,000 Bells to set an ordinance, while public works can cost anywhere from a small amount to a princely sum. Other townsfolk can donate to the works as well, but due to their being such narcissistic sociopaths, you'll be contributing the lion's share of the donations from your own pocket. What could have been an interesting new addition to the series instead simply adds to the goalpost shifting foundation, giving players yet more debts to continuously pay off, and ensuring everything now takes longer than ever to achieve.  Fortunately, New Leaf still retains a level of satisfaction as reward for the time and money spent. Being able to customize the town, even in a capacity more limited than I'd have liked, carries with it a sense of amusing power, and it's rather exciting to work toward the building of larger, more unique structures such as the Dream Suite, where you can experience other players' dream towns online.  It also must be said that there's a lot more content this time around. Towns are populated by a greater number of residents, and the tropical island (now Tortimer Island) is back, giving players access to minigames and exotic items to collect. As far as online features go, players can upload their idea of a perfect home to a showcase, and as always are welcome to enter the towns of friends and perform whatever petty vandalism they need to do.  As always, there's a compelling and engrossing aspect to Animal Crossing's strangely absorbing banality. Having gone through the motions so many times now, however, I found my interest dropping off more and more as my month with the game wore on. Sure, the new mayoral duties are a great idea, but the fact they work in exactly the same way as house loan repayments means you're doing even more of the repetitive stuff required for the payoff. From politics to tropical minigames, the fresh content is simply a slightly altered way of doing the same kind of things we've done since the first Animal Crossing. Given that Animal Crossing is always a weird little addiction, that's not necessarily a bad thing. It is, however, a game that intrigues me less now than once it did.  There's plenty of fun and silliness to be had in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, and obsessive fans will likely find the extra content, however fundamentally familiar, to be endearing and laudable. It's a good little game, but it's nowhere near as special as it used to be, and those hoping for more flexibility and interaction from their new political careers will feel let down by what is, ostensibly, just more goalpost shifting and further excuses to get you to shake bananas off trees.  A new leaf has not been turned. Rather, an old dog is on display. Faithful, loyal, and hard to dislike, but you know what it can do already. 
Animal Crossing review photo
A political animal
Animal Crossing is a hard series to assess because, to this day, I still struggle to understand what I like about it. Actually, I still don't know if I actually like it or not. When I played Wild World, I obsessively absorbed...

K.K. Slider photo
K.K. Slider

K.K. Slider covers Daft Punk's 'Get Lucky'


Catch that Daft Punk fever
May 30
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
YouTube user Alex Romero made this little mashup featuring K.K. Slider in place of Pharrell Williams in Daft Punk's "Get Lucky." Nothing mind blowing, but if you enjoy K.K. Slider's demonic voice and the Daft Punk single, then you're in for a good time. [Via GoNintendo]
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

Animal Crossing: New Leaf gets a bizarre TV spot


Watch a real kid walk through a virtual toon town
May 24
// Chris Carter
Nintendo is gearing up for the release of the newest iteration in the Animal Crossing series on the 3DS, titled New Leaf. To help get people in the mood, the first commercial spot has appeared, and it's...interesting, to say...
Animal Crossing photo
Animal Crossing

Nintendo says Tom Nook is not bad, just misunderstood


"He's just passionate about his business"
May 16
// Darren Nakamura
[Header image by kennuhisaki] Like many others, Stephen Totilo at Kotaku fosters a strong distaste for the business practices of Animal Crossing's perpetual town merchant Tom Nook. Totilo got to chat with some of the top...
Rhymedown Spectacular photo
Rhymedown Spectacular

Rhymedown Spectacular: The Quest Not Taken


The brains behind Jimquisition and Zero Punctuation get lyrical
May 15
// Jim Sterling
Your ol' pals Jim and Yahtzee are back, and this week they're lending verse to Thief 4 and Animal Crossing. It's all very artistic stuff, and involves the human condition.  We are professional poets now, and we'll say this to all our dates when we go on dates with hot people. 
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Kotaku lied: Nintendo loves penises AND butts!


Destructoid offers a re-BUTT-al
May 09
// Jim Sterling
In a recent article on Kotaku, writer Patricia Hernandez pointed out that, while Nintendo will censor asses, it has no problem showcasing a delicious penis.  She used Animal Crossing: New Leaf as evidence, criticizing Ni...
Animal Crossing: New Leaf photo
Animal Crossing: New Leaf

Party it up at Club LOL in Animal Crossing: New Leaf


Drop those beats, K.K. Slider!
Apr 25
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Oh Animal Crossing, you have a special place in my gaming life. I lost six months to you when you came out originally on the GameCube. I swore I never would play another Animal Crossing after that, but Animal Crossing: New L...
The DTOID Show photo
The DTOID Show

The Evil Within, Deadpool, & Legend Of Yoshi's 3D Luigi U


The Destructoid Show wears two Hawaiian shirts at once
Apr 19
// Max Scoville
Well, I done goofed when I was making the thumbnail for this episode. The Evil Inside is not an actual video game. I am dumb. Today's formerly-live Destructoid Show covers the announcement of Bethesda and Shinji Mikami's new...
Animal Crossing 3DS XL photo
Animal Crossing 3DS XL

Animal Crossing: New Leaf to come in new 3DS XL bundle


Game comes pre-installed
Apr 17
// Dale North
Announced during this morning's Nintendo Direct, a hardware 3DS XL bundle for Animal Crossing: New Leaf will come at launch in a few weeks. It's a white-on-white model, decorated with a cute leaf/icon pattern. The game will c...
Mr. Resetti tears photo
Tom Nook also neutered
Animal Crossing is a series about doing whatever you want, with a few loose goals put in place if you choose to pursue them. It's one of the least punishing series ever made. One of the few times you might feel anything unple...


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