Ever wanted to be mayor without actually feeling the pressure of mayor? How about being an archeologist and donating the dinosaur bones you discover to a museum and becoming known for that. Or, perhaps, you want to have a way to make quick cash (or, in this case, bells) by selling bugs, fish, and other deep sea creatures. If you said yes to any of the above, it sounds like it’s time to pull out the old 3DS, head on down to your local game store or, if you’re feeling particularly comfortable and cozy in your own house, click on over to the Nintendo eStore, and get Animal Crossing.
Having played the original game when I was younger and finding it somewhat boring (although, to be fair, I was about 8, and if I wasn’t smacking something with some sort of weapon, I was devastatingly bored), this one feels like a vast improvement. You arrive in town because you were just planning on moving there, akin to the original DS game. However, through some misunderstanding (which you later getting a letter from a mysterious person explaining), you’re believed to be the mayor. You get the choice to deny it, of course, but in the end, no matter what, you become mayor. Which, honestly, is great. You get to create public work projects, which range from opening a store to a face cut-out standee (and everything in between), you get reviews of what you should and shouldn’t do to your town, and that’s just about it. No dramatic pressures of being a mayor, like election and scandals.
The obvious gameplay returns as well, but adds obstacles for you to unlock, like stores, a dream suite (where you can visit other’s towns), and even a club. It’s a bit different from last time, because you have to unlock and raise funds (and/or pay for) the second floor of the museum, and a separate coffee shop which is still, thankfully, run by Brewster. You still catch bugs and fish, and can sell them to Nook’s store. Or rather, the store run by his two sons, who you meet in a later remodeling of the store. However, there is a new store that starts out in town called Retail, run by Reese and her husband (pink and blue alpacas) which is essentially a thrift store, where you can sell items at your own price on specific stands, as well as just selling them to the shop owner. As well as these things, the game incorporates streetpass, allowing a player to view other’s homes and purchase up to five items per night on a visit to those houses. It’s quite nice, and allows you to complete your catalogue a lot faster.
You also are able to get in-game achievements, which is cool. Phineas (a humanoid sea lion) wanders around, and if you talk to him and ask for a badge, he gives you one, so long as you’ve earned it. You have to continue to do daily tasks and unlock things in order to get them, akin to normal achievements which is exciting.
The gameplay, however, is based in real time. Whenever twenty-four hours passes in real time, so does it in the game, so you have to manage your time and almost create another life in said game. Which can be complicated, for sure, but there’s also the handy little cheat of time travel. Sure, your citizens start calling you a time traveler and your turnips die, but if you can make one million bells, it’s certainly worth it. Right?
Another fun addition to the gameplay is the island. After a few days have passed, you meet the old mayor of your town (and from all of the original games), a turtle named Tortimer. After you talk to him, the next day, you unlock the island, which has rare beetles on it you can collect and fill your basket to earn more money. A turtle named Kapp’n sails you over, while singing. He occasionally imparts wisdom (but mostly imparts songs about his wife), but As well as that, there are now over 10 minigames you’re able to play, each having varying degrees of difficulty. The roster of games changes each day, however, so you never know what you’re going to get. For playing these games, you earn medals depending on how well you did, and the medals are like island-money. You’re able to spend them on the random assortment of items on the island there, to further complete your collection.
There’s so much more about the game I could mention, but I’ll leave it there for now. Basically, go out and buy yourself a copy. It’s completely worth it, and it’s fun to mindlessly spend hours on there in order to become the best mayor you could ever be.