My return to AC New Leaf

About a month and a half ago I was looking for a new bedtime game to play and remembered how much I loved Animal Crossing New Leaf. So partly because of that, the fact I still haven’t decided whether or not to get New Horizons (I feel like I’ve missed the boat on that anyways) and also due to making some extra purchases on the old eShop before it’s no longer possible, I fired up my 3DS to see how my old town was doing. It had been about five years since I’d played the game, and I had never done the update which added Amiibo functionality and the campground (the camping area seems pretty…boring and low feature wise so far unless more stuff unlocks later? Unfortunately I don’t think I have any compatible Amiibo anyways).

I have 5 million bells in the bank, but I never expanded my house to more than two rooms. It’s been really interesting returning to this game, I’ve been having so much fun making subtle little redecorations to my two rooms, adding a few public works here and there and seeing new townsfolk move in and out. I forgot how feature rich, relaxing and satisfying this game is overall (I realized I never got around to unlocking the roost, I already have a ton of donations made to the museum, bugs and fossils at least, do you need to donate paintings too to get the Roost?)

This and Dragon Quest III (Switch) are now my go-to bedtime games, they both hit a sweet spot in that way. I have to also say it’s striking how this game brings back memories of where I was in my life when I first played it in both happy and melancholy ways. New Leaf was also the first full retail title I ever bought digitally so it has nostalgia for me in that respect as well.

Maybe when I unlock the Roost in New Leaf and the next time New Horisons is on sale I might be ready to finally move on, for now I’m surprised at how good it feels to go back to New Leaf. Feel free to post any fond memories of your New Leaf days.

Oh, and Henry will always be greatest ever BFF.


It was the first AC game I really got into. I have a love hate relationship with the series since I feel like there’s not enough genuine gameplay in them. They feel more like apps than games at times. Plus all the limited time shenanigans of the stores and wildlife and stuff makes it difficult to enjoy as an adult with real life responsibilities.

But I like the spirit of these games and they’re at their best in portable form like this. I do think the Switch installment is better than New Leaf though. You definitely haven’t missed the boat on that. I’m sure it can still be fully enjoyed now.

By the way, one of my favorite things about NewLeaf was the (now defunct) companion app on Wii U where you can see all the characters in HD for the first time and people uploaded photos. It was a totally niche thing at a time when Nintendo was a more niche company.

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