In a nutshell: “Animal Crossing” throws you as a newcomer into a village where only anthropomorphized animals (i.e. animals with human characteristics) live. The local merchant Tom Nook, a raccoon, kindly extends the money for your home and also lets you do a few small jobs. Then you are on your own.
“And that’s it now?”
At this point I thought to myself when I played Animal Crossing for the first time: “And this is it now?” I was so perplexed by the amount of free space and the little “pressure” that video games would otherwise like to exert I had to arrange myself with the ease of an animal crossing. If you can do that, you will be served a motley world in which you decide what you do, how fast you do it and whether you do it at all. You can determine yourself how quickly you can get your current one credit paid off to Tom Nook so that he could extend your house again. You can decide for yourself whether you want to talk to the new neighbor or confidently ignore him. Everything can, nothing has to.
“Animal Crossing: New Horizons” for the Nintendo Switch is the latest part of the series, the first “right one” since “Animal Crossing: New Leaf” in 2013. It will also offer a few new features because of the material that has already been examined, it has a “Caribbean touch” and that Camping component, which the “Animal Crossing” offshoot for smartphones placed more emphasis on. So there will also be something new to discover for long-time fans.
The best thing about the game
My personal highlight: In the late evening hours, when the game offers wonderfully relaxing background music, walk along the beach and speculate that rare species of fish and beetles will appear. I owe it to Animal Crossing that today, although I wasn’t really going to do it, I can enumerate an incredible number of these species. What have Atlas Beetles, Mammoth Beetles, Scarabs, Arowana, Cooking Pike and Arapaima given me for productive nights?