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Nintendo: We always want to make Animal Crossing “the best one possible” while preserving memories of older titles

French publication 20 Minutes has had the opportunity to chat with Animal Crossing: New Horizons developer Aya Kyogoku about the popular Nintendo Switch video game. Kyogoku told the site that the team always wants to ensure that when they embark on a new Animal Crossing game they want to create the best possible version that they can at the time. Kyogoku also said that they want to preserve the “memories and affection” and the nostalgia of older titles in the franchise and incorporate it into the newer ones.

“With each development [cycle], we always want to ensure that the most recent entry is the best game possible. It was the case with New Leaf and still is with New Horizons. But everyone, in particular the fans, have their favorite game [in the series]. I believe it’s part of the charm of having long running franchises like Animal Crossing – players talk about the differences, the evolution from one game to another. We don’t want to ruin the memories and affection they have for the older games – we always keep that in mind, we actually want them to keep the memories they have experienced during their lives in the different Animal Crossing games, as well of the events of their lives that they had traversed at the time they were playing.”


19 thoughts on “Nintendo: We always want to make Animal Crossing “the best one possible” while preserving memories of older titles”

    1. I hate City Folk so much for this exact reason and I’m glad to know other people think the same.

    2. I didn’t like it either. Wild World was my first AC and when I went over to City Folk it just felt very limiting being tied to a TV and having to endure load times to go to the City to do, in reality, very little.

    3. I actually like city folk despite barely playing it, it has a good ost, and has better dialouge than new leaf and new horizons, but yeah I can honestly see the hate with it, it’s just wild world ported to the wii with a graphical upgrade

  1. There are many new things that New Horizons does very well, but there are also plenty of decisions that make me scratch my head in confusion as to why they’d go down this route. The golden tools situation is for sure one of those. To create the best Animal Crossing, they really ought to not only look back and see what all of the games prior have done wrong (e.g., random placements of NPC structures), but also retain the things they did right.

    That clear path of permanent tool upgrades, evenly spaced out, going from normal, to silver, to gold versions, with improved features each step, was so much more fun. I hope that NH ends up with an update that makes golden tools permanent, or at least gives them functional bonuses (besides the watering cans, which do still have increased range). It’s silly that they’re currently just a waste of gold nuggets.

  2. New Horizons sure hasn’t felt like the best Animal Crossing to me. At least not yet. In fact, I haven’t played in a week or two because I was getting bored. I never got bored that quick in New Leaf. Sure, I like the new things you can do, such as crafting items. But I was already getting burned out. And I was also getting sick of all of my tools breaking. First, Links weapons all break in Breath Of The Wild. Now they break in New Horizons as well? Very annoying.

  3. I think New Horizons has potential to be the best, they just need to continue adding features through updates. It’s missing too many features in its current state.

      1. Off the top of my head, no dream suite, no post office or the pelicans (you can still send letters but with a very limited pool of stationary), swimming is gone, kicks only shows up sometimes instead of having his own shop, no minigames, Nintendo items are strangely absent (maybe they will give us special items when a new game releases? We have Xenoblade in 2 weeks to see if that’s the case), also a bunch of characters that are gone like Tortimer, Wendell, Resetti, Copper, Booker, etc.

        There’s some features that are really nice though, like being able to put items outside adds a lot of character to the layout of the island, and odd ball items like bonfires or grills that hardly had a use in a house’s room finally has a use. Most of this stuff looks like it will be added in the future, so I’m remaining optimistic.

        1. I’d heard the game has an autosave function that cannot be turned off, so that eliminates the need for Resetti in his previous occupation (not that I miss it).

          No Tortimer though? NO PELLY OR PHYLLIS!? That’s just wrong!

          1. A lot of the characters are gone because of the way the game functions, like it’s more convenient to change your appearance with a mirror inside your home, but that leaves shampoodle without a job. I think they could still have a purpose in game, like what if Resetti let you explore the underside of the island and let you do some mining? There could also be a reference to his old job with him being in a much better mood without having to worry about the stress over yelling at cheaters, but you have a new way to set him off because a calm Resetti just isn’t Resetti.

  4. I think the terraforming and customization easily makes this the beat in the series, but I’m still very disappointed with some of the missing features all the same. It’s very bittersweet.

    I miss the mini games from the New Leaf island. I really miss the Gyroids which I thought were a series staple. I miss being able to sell items to people and animals through retail. I didn’t use the dream suite much, but it would be PERFECT for this game with the crazy amount of customization. I miss being able to make your own displays in empty museum rooms. I miss the missing characters and shops. Where’s Gracie? Katrina? Why can’t Shampoodle come back and offer more complicated hair styles that you can’t do yourself in the mirror, along with the Mii masks? I don’t understand why diving isn’t back. I didn’t love it personally – but it was fun and I thought the natural evolution of that concept would be to allow it in any body of water. The Roost was fun. Constellation making was fun. Drawing Blanca’s face on was fun. The Nintendo items were fun, and I also thought those were a series staple and was looking forward to seeing what new ones they would add.

    Despite ALL of that and more, I personally think the terraforming and customization options are big enough game changers to make this the best iteration. It just makes me sad to see all the things that got left behind.

    1. And yes the airport takes WAAAAY too long. Why can’t people hop in and out without everyone watching the long ass cutscene? A notification “so and so has arrived” would be enough. If there’s a bit of lag when they come in and out, who cares. Better than a full minute lost every time anyone comes through.
      Also why isn’t there a way to tell if a friend has their gate open for visitors? There should be an icon next to friends whose gates are open.
      And why there isn’t an option to craft multiple of the same item at once will always baffle me. Fishing bait is a chore simply because of this. There are definitely kinks to work out. With just a little bit of polish this game could be INCREDIBLE.

      1. @ HappySadCrosser,
        But it should have been incredible BEFORE it was released. That was a BIG mistake on Nintendo’s part. I was wondering why I wasn’t feeling it with this Animal Crossing. But after reading others comments about what (and who) is missing from this game, I’m starting to understand. There’s FAR too much missing. SO much missing in fact that it may have very well killed this game. I was hoping that maybe all of the characters that I haven’t seen yet would eventually appear. Heck, I haven’t even seen K.K. Slider in my game, but I know he’s in it from videos I’ve seen.

  5. Me and my sister are huge animal crossing fans. This one seems so dull. I love the customisation options as a whole but half of the AC family is missing. :(

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