With the upcoming release of an Animal Crossing title for the Nintendo Switch on the *ahem* horizon, it's a good time to look back at past titles. There is a lot to choose from, but Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the first one that comes to mind for a lot of people. (After all, it still has a surprisingly active community for a game that was released over five years ago!)
There are a lot of features in Animal Crossing: New Leaf that it would be genuinely heartbreaking to see left out of the Animal Crossing: New Horizons, but there are also some things that would be better off being forgotten about entirely.
10 Do: Writing Letters To Your Villagers
Sending and receiving letters from your favorite villager is one of the most wholesome things about Animal Crossing: New Leaf.
You can write pretty much whatever you want in your letter as long as you're fine with them showing them off to the other villagers (and other people that come visit your town!) whenever they feel like it.
Sometimes, your villagers will send you a gift or an invitation to their birthday party, and other times they just send you a random jumble of thoughts, but, either way, it's always nice to get one!
9 Don't: Restrictive Furniture Placement
Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer introduced the ability to place things in half of a tile, making every item significantly more versatile and opening up a whole new world of decoration possibilities. Unfortunately, that wasn't a part of the Animal Crossing: New Leaf base game or the Welcome Amiibo update.
Decorating spaces is hard when every single item, no matter how small, has to take up at least one whole tile. It's especially awful when you're trying to place items on a large (two or four tile) table because nothing can go in the middle!
8 Do: The Roost Cafe (Or Something Similar)
While working a shift at The Roost Cafe can be frustrating if you don't have a guide or a lot of patience to figure out exactly what your villagers want to order, it's also a really fun mini-game to play that gives some insight into the villagers' personalities and tastes.
A successful shift also produces a rare Coffee Beans item that can be sold for a pretty decent sum of money at Re-Tail depending on what quality it is, as well as the opportunity to receive a cafe-themed item.
7 Don't: Underwhelming Storage
One of the main objectives of Animal Crossing in general is to collect furniture and clothing. It's all good at first when the initial expansions seem like they're going to be enough, but, after playing for a while, you'll probably end up with your secret storage and your regular storage both stuffed full while your house is as decorated as it's gonna get with your current inventory.
The lack of storage makes enjoying the game for too long sort of difficult for anyone who likes to hoard as many things as they possibly can. Hoarding is understandable, though, because some items are exclusive to certain events or they can't be repurchased if you get rid of them.
6 Do: Customizable Furniture
Do you have a blue bed but a pink-themed room? No worries! With a quick visit to Re-Tail and a handful of Bells, Cyrus will be able to customize it for you, as long as it comes from the right set.
Customization comes in a variety of different ways, from replacing fabric designs with either clothing prints or saved patterns, to turning them into (somewhat obnoxious) precious metal or gemstone versions, to simply recoloring the wood on a table.
No matter what you choose, customizing things opens up a whole new world of different ways to decorate your house and makes it super easy to make (nearly) everything that you own feel unique.
5 Don't: Gracie's Obnoxious Prices
After working tirelessly to unlock Gracie Grace's shop, it's indescribably frustrating to see the prices on some of the items! The clothing, shoes, and accessories sell for thousands of bells, and the furniture, walls, and floors are even more ridiculous.
Things in Gracie's shop are sold on a seasonal rotation. That's pretty cool since it guarantees that the inventory will always change it up a bit to keep it from going stale, but it's also a bummer since it adds even more pressure to scrape up enough bells to afford that Sweets Set, which is going to run you for well over a million bells total.
That's right. A million. Gracie's prices are a scam.
4 Do: Isabelle
The mayor's beloved secretary, Isabelle, is an eager workaholic who's always looking for ways to improve the town. In fact, it could be said that she's a bit overly eager, since it's incredibly rate to find her sleeping, no matter what time you pop into City Hall.
She may have been called to go be in Smash, but after Animal Crossing: New Leaf, it would feel weird to play an Animal Crossing game without a single appearance by (or even just a reference to) Isabelle in it.
3 Don't: A Lack Of Diversity
Characters all come with the same light skin color that can only be darkened with a tan, which comes from wandering around outside without protective gear during certain Summer months. It goes without saying that it's not exactly in good taste to make having darker skin into a gameplay mechanic, instead of an automatically available character-creation option. You can also get Mii make-up put on at Shampoodle, but that means sacrificing the soft, colorful aesthetic of the game.
Luckily, the issue was taken care of in Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer and Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, where you can freely change the color of your character's skin, hair, and eyes whenever you see fit! From what's known so far, it seems like Animal Crossing: New Horizons plans on keeping up with that theme.
2 Do: The Museum
Collecting bugs, fish, and fossils is one of Animal Crossing's only actual objectives, and it doesn't even really have to be done. These items can be sold for Bells, of course, but one of the coolest features of Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the Museum on Main Street.
You can donate one of each type of collectible that you find to Blathers, and he'll put it on display for you. There's a full-blown aquarium, a ton of bug terrariums, and a whole room filled with put-together (or partial, if you haven't completed it yet) fossils. There's also a plaque outside that lists who donated what, which is pretty cool!
It's a great way to look back on your progress in the game so far and to show off to anyone who visits your village.
1 Don't: Villagers That Require Amiibos
Amiibos are a cool concept, but what isn't so cool is that the Welcome Amiibo update for Animal Crossing: New Leaf introduced several different villagers that could literally only be gotten by using their Amiibo card. The cards were sold in blind packs, so there was no way to guarantee that you'd get what you wanted, and several of them were pretty rare.
It was an expensive way to get your hands on a villager, and, considering that Animal Crossing: New Leaf was already a full-priced game, it just seemed greedy. Hopefully, Animal Crossing: New Horizons won't follow the same path by requiring Amiibos... Or even go down the same road as Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, which added lootboxes in 2018.