Tag Archives: Animal Crossing: City Folk

Animal Crossing 3DS and what we know

When the Nintendo 3DS and its potential blockbusters were first announced, the forthcoming game I was most excited for was Animal Crossing 3DS, which is not its official title, but could probably end up being so. The no-battery life handheld came out in March 2011, and GameStop, along with a number of other retailers, were claiming that the next iteration of the cutesy, addicting life sim was slated for Fall 2011. Right, so it didn’t make the launch lineup, wasn’t primed for summer, but an autumn release wasn’t too far off; I could wait. And I have.

Currently, it’s late January 2012, and there’s still no Animal Crossing 3DS. When’s it coming out? Who knows. There’s nothing. Nintendo is being extra quiet about this game–and I have absolutely no idea why. Just tell us it’s true name and when we can expect to play it. Simple as that. A new tentative release window says Summer 2012, but I no longer trust anything unless it is backed by Nintendo reps themselves.

Okay, I guess we do know some gameplay tidbits, which are enough to nibble on, but I’m hungry. I’m ready to eat. True fact: I’m always ready to eat.

The biggest gameplay detail that is known is that you are no longer a mere resident of the animal-filled town you come to call your own. No, you are its mayor, a man or woman with power and dominating control. It’s not clear if you start out in this role or have to earn it by a number of miscellaneous character-building tasks, but whatever. And as mayor of all of Hobbitontown, you’ll certainly need some assistance. So, meet your new, private secretary:

Aw, she’s kind of adorable. And nameless currently. Alas, rumor has it that she can be extremely clumsy, but her role remains vital nonetheless. As your secretary, she’ll help point out parts of the village that look particularly good and parts that may need some extra work. So if there’s ever a lull in your daily minutiae, check in with her and find out what you can be doing to improve your town and your ratings before the re-election circuit hits.

Everybody’s arch-nemesis from previous Animal Crossings is back, but this time wearing some new attire. That’s right. Tom Nook is no longer selling stock. Instead, he’s selling houses. Not sure what this ultimately means, but maybe it has something to do with StreetPassing other towns. I suspect that you’ll still have to deal with him on a daily basis for some reason or another. I mean, he sells houses, and you’re in charge of a bunch of houses.

Other confirmed tidbits in a nice bulleted list because I’m getting tired of trying to think of interesting ways to phrase all of this:

  • Benches and outdoor items, such as lamps, are now available
  • Nintendo-themed items aplenty
  • Players can go swimming
  • Customization of the outside of houses is now allowed, and we’re not just talking about changing the roof’s color
  • You can live in a tent
  • Furniture customization to rule all
  • There’s a mall, which I guess is akin to visiting the city as in Animal Crossing: City Folk
  • You can take your shoes off
  • YOU CAN TAKE YOUR SHOES OFF
  • YOU CAN TAKE YOUR F*CKING SHOES OFF!!!

Woah.

Well, that’s all I got for now. I’m tired of speculating. Just give us some dang, honest-to-goodness solid details, Nintendo. I promise you, no matter what you say, I am buying this game the day it comes out. I just hope it comes out soon.

30 Days of Gaming, #6 – Most annoying character

Hmm…something about this feels familiar. Oh, right. That’s because last November, I wrote up a little post about my top five most annoying videogame sidekicks, focusing in on the sidekicky aspect of the business. I mean, adventuring into the unknown is one thing, but doing it with a chatty brat is another. Sure, any of those could easily get smashed into bits by today’s 30 Days of Gaming topic train, but I decided to think some more and found a few other contenders. And we’re going with Tom Nook, simply for his sheer audacity to never, ever change.

Tom Nook is a raccoon tanuki that runs a shop called Nook’s Cranny in your town in all versions of Animal Crossing. He starts out as a nice fella, giving you a home to live in. One small caveat though: you’ll have to pay him for it, and he’s okay with payments over time, so long as you eventually pay it off. Once you do, he’ll expand your house, opening up more rooms to decorate…so long as you keep paying him, too. That’s fine. That’s kind of how it works in real life, minus the talking raccoon, I think.

Where he gets truly annoying is in his shop. You enter Nook’s Cranny (clean thoughts, dear readers!), and he welcomes you, and gives you a list of options. You do your things, peruse his wares, and leave, but not before he can get the last word in: “Thank you! Do come again! I look forward to seeing you!” You can never just enter and leave uninhibited, like countless RPGs that let you waltz into that potions shop, knock over some bottles, and leave before anyone notices. No, not at Nook’s Cranny. Not in Nook’s book. He will greet you, he will part with you. He never breaks form. He’s like that Obama smile video. He’s like braindead. He’s like…overtly annoying.

And then he follows you around the store, like a used cars salesman, like a true furniture pusher, like an ex-lover with a vengeance. You can run rings around his desk of player tools, but he’ll catch up to you eventually. Unfortunately, the only way to determine what some of the wallpapers/carpets are is to ask him, and you have to then mash the buttons until you can get him to stop.

You want more? Evidently, after you’ve fully upgraded his shop to Nookington’s, Tom will randomly ask you some questions, and the wrong answers will result in him downgrading the store back to its original format. All that shopping…for nothing.

I’m pretty excited about all the possibilities that Animal Crossing 3DS could hit on the head, but if Tom Nook is around, well, I’m gonna be several hundred thousand bells short of excitement.

Stumbling into Animal Crossing’s pitfall yet again

Hi, my name is Paul, and I used to be heavily addicted to Animal Crossing: Wild World. It was the kind of thing that overtook me swiftly, silently, softly; I would go to bed playing it and wake eager to play it again. My lunch hour was not about eating food, but rather using that time wisely to interact with my town’s villagers, find fossils, and collect whatever bugs/fish were only available at such a time. If asked what my Saturday night plans were, I’d have to figure out a solid way to lie and not reveal that I was going to see K.K. Slider play and get a new song for my red boombox.

Yes, it was that kind of addiction, but I did eventually overcome it. This was, naturally, only after I had done everything possible in the game: 100% bugs found, 90% fish caught (curse you, Coelacanth!), all fossils found, all true paintings donated, a good percentage of my item list filled out, house fully paid off and filled with kick-ass furniture. All that and more. Deep down, despite still playing it even after the fact, I knew the magic grip was loosening, and eventually I did wean myself away, passing the cartridge on to Tara to get addicted to.

At some point last year, my wife got Animal Crossing: City Folk for the Wii, and I watched her set it up, doing the same meaningless tasks for Nook to get started. It didn’t look any different gameplay-wise than what I had already spent a year obsessing over, and so I ignored it, uninterested, disappointed, especially with the slim new offerings like going to the city. I decided to wait for a true sequel.

And then something happened a few months ago: I started to play it every day or so, only for about 15 minutes. It’s a great distraction. It’s a nice change of pace after stabbing assassins or shooting aliens or staring at RPG stat screens for far too long. I told myself that it wasn’t a race, and that if I didn’t pay off my house as soon as possible that the (animal) world would not end. I found myself enjoying just running around and methodically rebuilding my collections (only going after what I wanted then at the moment versus buying everything just to have everything), and once I started gathering Mario-themed items from floating presents, well, I knew I was back. At least for a bit. Until the Nintendo 3DS version drops, of course:

Granted, the magical hold is definitely not as tight as before, but I am excited now that winter has ended in-game to get my net out and collect some fun insects.