10:00 am EST, February 26, 2020

‘Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ guide: Moving neighbors, changing town landscape & more

The latest improvements to the animal-based life sim game Animal Crossing: New Horizons will make paying off Tom Nook’s mortgage loan a bit more pleasant.

The latest Nintendo Direct focused specifically on the coming Animal Crossing: New Horizons Nintendo Switch game, and it revealed some handy features that will make living on Tom Nook’s desert island all the more pleasant.

From moving neighbors, or preventing them from moving in on a certain plot of land, to completely reworking the landscaping of your town, here are the latest and greatest features in Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

Moving neighbors

This is a big one: you can tell new neighbors where you want them to move to. Simply approach someone new roaming your town, and they will prompt you by asking where you think it would be best for them to set up shop. Lead them far away from your precious orange grove, and out of the way of your favorite walking path, all with great ease.

You can reserve spots for incoming neighbors, helping you fine-tune the look of your town to the umpteenth degree. This is a feature that was honestly needed for quite some time now. It was always so pesky to have someone move in on a plot of land that you were reserving for a new floor pattern installation, or worse, right on top of your beautiful flower garden. Stay away Grizzly, I’m warning you!

Changing landscape

Terraforming is one of the most exciting Animal Crossing: New Horizons features coming to the game. How many times have you wanted to completely remove a cliff from existence? It takes a while to go around it, and it’s in your daily route, making it both a nuisance and an eyesore. With Tom Nook’s tools, you’ll now be able to craft the land of your town just as you’d like it to be.

You can build up from the ground level, giving you endless possibilities on the ways your town can look. As is now a series standard, you’ll be able to select from some starter templates for the town when you are starting the game. If you find that your choice was a bad one because it makes getting around town too difficult, you can rest at ease in knowing that Animal Crossing: New Horizons has your back.

animal crossing: new horizons villagers guide

Travelling to other islands

It seems as though ol’ Tortimer has finally taken a backseat to the action, as you no longer travel to his island as you did in New Leaf. Instead, you travel to one of the new islands that the game generates for you, making each trip a fresh adventure.

There are new villagers to meet on these smaller islands, making it feel a lot like the smaller world mechanics of Pocket Camp. You can collect special items, crafting supplies, fruit ect. on these islands, and you will be able to meet new characters to the series. Who knows, if you’re friendly enough, they may decide to move to your town!

Playing with friends

In Animal Crossing: New Horizons, you are able to have up to eight family members on one Switch console living in the same town. While that will be a fun way to fight over who gets to play first, the online functionalities will hopefully give players playing on their own a chance to interact with other human Villagers in a much more peaceful way.

Playing online with others in any Animal Crossing game was always a risky business. Who’s to say that they weren’t going to go through and chop down all of your trees and dig holes everywhere? Thankfully, Nintendo is nipping that issue in the bud by only allowing “best friends” on your Switch friends list to interact with your town in those ways. Up to eight players can interact in one town at a time, with one leader having the ability to buy/sell/trade goods. If players want to switch up the role of who is the leader in charge of the action, a simple button press will do so.

animal crossing: new horizons sky

Crafting items

New items make their way onto the Animal Crossing: New Horizons game, including an incredibly handy pole vault. You were able to build bridges in New Leaf, but doing so was expensive and time-consuming. When you craft the pole vault, you’ll be able to simply leap over waterways with ease.

Another new item is the ladder, which will be used to climb up cliffs. The ax will start off as a rudimentary stone tool, but eventually, you’ll be able to craft it up to a higher level and more durable item. Tom Nook’s store will open up a little further into your playthrough, but right from the start, you’re tasked with crafting your own items to ensure your town flourishes.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons launches for the Nintendo Switch on March 20.

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