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Discussion What are some new features/ideas you'd like to see in the next Animal Crossing?

1. Add a TOTK ultra-hand-like system for furniture or house building. Craft sticks, boards, hardware, etc and glue them together to make stuff, then attach upholsteries, veneers, and paint.

2. Gardening mechanics. Base plants you can cross pollination to make new plants like that streetpass game "Flower Town". Custom topiaries, grow a veggie garden, sell flowers, etc.
 
1. Add a TOTK ultra-hand-like system for furniture or house building. Craft sticks, boards, hardware, etc and glue them together to make stuff, then attach upholsteries, veneers, and paint.

2. Gardening mechanics. Base plants you can cross pollination to make new plants like that streetpass game "Flower Town". Custom topiaries, grow a veggie garden, sell flowers, etc.
So we can make unholy monstrosities with the ultra hand (I‘ll just call it animal hand) thing? I would love to stick a villager I hate onto the tower of 600 piggy banks
 
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To me, sharing a town with one or more of my sisters was the core experience of Animal Crossing. Sharing a town became less necessary as new games were made for handheld devices, which were more often used by a single person.
Same! This is also why I haven't played New Leaf nearly as much as many people. And because of the Switch's awkward place in this I was being weirdly tyrannical as the main owner of the town in New Horizons.

Having said that I think your concept is fantastically interesting. Not sure I have fully grasped the Townies, but the concept at large seems like a logical, modern, and creative way to not make people lose the control they loved in New Horizons while also staying true to the idea of merely being an inhabitant of a living Animal Crossing town/world.
 
So I started writing the below post about three weeks ago, then life sort of got in the way. I'm going to try to finish it, but it'll probably be an organizational mess. Sorry about that.

Over a month ago I had a conversation with my sister which started with a simple statement from her: "I worry about how they can move forward." She then proceeded to explain in surprising detail exactly how they'll move forward with a concept as appealing as it is realistic. I have meant since then to write another long post for this thread, but I have a tendency to procrastinate the writing of any post that demands punctuation.

I don't think this post needs to be very long to convey the ideas my sister and I have, so I will try to keep it brief. It will be divided into two sections: first, the broad concept as given by my sister, with a few details filled out by me both during the conversation and in my mind since. Second will be a list of my own minor ideas that could be implemented regardless of overall game concept and are largely frivolous. Many are dumb and will prove unpopular. Let's get started!

In talking with my sister the first thing that I emphasized was my desire for scale. New Horizons provides great creative tools for decorating, but its approach to customization, with all customization but plants, bridges, and its buildings being furniture, limits the game's sense of place and, consequently, its atmosphere (or "vibes"). To me, this means the introduction of the following: dirt roads that flow more naturally; bigger and more natural waterways; more natural terrain, including at the least taller cliffs but ideally naturally varied topology; taller, though not necessarily realistically tall, trees; and, most pertinent to the current direction of the series, structures such as windmills, street lamps, water wells, and similar all being designed for outdoor use at a bigger scale, placed semi-permanently as they are in New Leaf.

To me, being a traditionalist as I am, these changes seemed best suited to the role of mayor as seen in New Leaf. My sister, however, had an idea that I found very interesting. She suggested that the next game would see the unification of the gameplay of New Horizons and its paid expansion Happy Home Paradise as players assume the role of real estate agent and land developer. Instead of designing homes for individual animals, players could court new residents to find the property of their dreams and build a dream home atop it. This direction excites me greatly, because not only is it congruous with the direction of the games and the interests of its newfound audience, it also presents so many opportunities to reconcile disparate parts of the game into a coherent vision and even rectify longtime shortcomings of the series.

The real estate role creates a narratively cohesive justification for the amount of control that players now have.

In addition to the atmospheric benefits, making your animal neighbors clients instead of set dressing is an opportunity to provide further gamification to the series. The long-standing systems of interior design and outdoor layout assessment could contribute to a quantifiable property value that creates new structure and loop.

(three weeks later)

I think I was trying to thoroughly justify the improvement to verisimilitude that changing the player's relationship with the game's setting and characters would bring, but I think I've made my point more than clear. An assessment of the vibes of a game are the sort of thing that one will either agree with or not. Instead I'd like to move on and touch on a few more concrete ideas rather than continuing to expound on a complete thesis of the series.

Congruous with the real estate role would be the introduction of some simple house design tools. I've long thought that a system like that of MySims would be a great fit for Animal Crossing. For those unfamiliar, here's a child from fifteen years ago demoing the game on YouTube. What isn't shown is the ability to stack and arrange multiple blocks to create more complex structures. I'd love for this sort of exterior layout to be reflected by the interior, with the blocks being rooms that exist in the same space rather than the void of existing Animal Crossing buildings.

I think it would be fantastic for towns to have different festivals to give the impression of local cultures. I think it would be nice to have simple town archetypes based on industries such as fishing, farming, or logging. A harvest festival could look very different for a town with a history of farming. Beyond this, the player should have opportunities to formalize their own contributions to local culture and differentiate their town. Being able to formalize events coordinated with other players in the game would go far in making the game feel more responsive to the player. Beyond the obvious like fishing and bug tourneys, consider the possibilities presented by organizing a flea market to be held in your town on set dates, allowing your friends to come and set up a stall to sell items to one another and to animal villagers.

I wish that I could remember more of my ideas from last month, but I'm sort of out of complete thoughts. As such I'd like to move on to a bullet list of my errant ones.

  • Trains absolutely need to come back. I played some e+ last year and hearing a train whistle from anywhere in town was magical, especially muffled from inside the museum. I think it would be cool if trains came at set intervals, and visiting a friend required catching your train. To lessen the player frustration of such a decision it'd have to be a pretty short interval, maybe ten minutes
  • Coffee brews at around 200 - 210 degrees Fahrenheit, but it's said by some that we are best able to taste it at body temperature. Accordingly, Brewster's insistence that you drink your coffee right away doesn't make any sense. Instead Brewster should insist that you wait indefinitely to drink, which would both create incentive for players to enjoy the ambience of The Roost, maybe including talking to other customers, until you ultimately put your foot down and drink it all in one gulp as we always have
  • Also related to The Roost, I've always loved its classic piano BGM and remember disliking that New Leaf replaced it with a guitar version. Time has made me appreciate both versions, so why not have both? I think it'd be great to have several versions of the piece with different instruments tied to who is playing at the time. A new special character could usually play the classic piano version, but a villager could sometimes sit in to play the guitar, clarinet, and so on
  • Building on the previous, I think it'd be great for K.K. Slider to play different gigs. Having DJ K.K. on weeknights was one of New Leaf's many great features that contributed to making the world feel alive, and I'd love for that to be expanded on. I think it'd be great if K.K. performed in a plaza, at the train station, and the Roost
  • Like many old-school fans I bemoaned the loss of Resetti, but autosaving is an incredible feature that should definitely stick around. I also appreciate that his health has canonically improved because his new job is less stressful, but I think it'd be awesome to call him out of retirement alongside systems to detect time travel
  • I'd really, really like a couple more personality types. With two more and the same ten villager cap you could have each villager in a town be different if you so chose
  • For the love of god give Shrunk either his job back or a new one
  • An early morning (like, 5AM?) BGM that sounds like this

I definitely could pull some more out from the back of my head if I sat here for a while but I'd like to finally post the fucking thing so uh here you go
 
I am once again bumping this thread with another one of my Animal Crossing ideas. This one is pretty simple.



A few weeks ago Pat Metheny released a new single, and I was immediately smitten by it. It potently evokes a summer evening to me, and thereby sparked my imagination for how a future Animal Crossing could sound. Again, the Metheny track sounds strictly like a summer evening to me, leading to what is now my most wanted feature for the next Animal Crossing: four 24-hour BGM soundtracks, one for each season. This would be a massive undertaking, but I think it would actually be even better if a team of four composers were tasked with it, each contributing one season each under the guidance of a single sound director.

That's pretty much it. Thanks for reading
 
I've gone into detail about what I want out of it before!

I'd like to see them focus more on the social aspects of the game, now that I think they've more or less perfected the gameplay loop.

Bigger villages, more villagers, more complex interactions, multiple personality traits per villager, removing the gender lock on traits and hobbies (So for instance, Apollo could be Cranky AND Sporty, Audie could be Sisterly AND Peppy, etc.)

Some things in previous games that I really liked were Harv's Island, the City, Animal Crossing Plaza, and the 7 visitors in New Horizons. What I'd love to see if these COMBINED: You, your friends, and anyone you invite all share one persistent city! You rent out or buy apartments in the city so you can save there, open the game already there, etc., all the smaller shops can be there, no more waiting for visits. A communal Farway Museum where you all work together on it, maybe you could take classes to identify fossils!

Start a new save on the same system and you have two choices: Share a town, OR, have separate towns, and share a city!

Customisable apartments inside and out, dozens and dozens of residents in each city, lots of visitors, inviting people from the city to move to your own town, being able to leave mail and gifts for others when they're not online. Customisable parks with fully modifiable outdoor furniture, maybe you can rent allotments in the park like some places IRL? A bandstand where KK performs and a communal radio for the rest of the week.

Changes I'd like to see to the home town:

Coastal rather than island.

Use the airport in the city to visit people online, or the train in your town to visit with local play.

No more loading screens! Make buildings as big inside as they are outside! Probably accompanied by sliiightly shrinking the museum (since the BIG museum would be in the city instead), and a larger town to accommodate the additional space. Maybe we could build a new main street and ask city shops to open branches in our town for local discounts?

One of my hopes for the next Animal Crossing is for them to take all the customisation they've worked on up until New Horizons, and just stop it there. Full stop. It's done. No more customisation features, there's enough. Improve the UX for it a bit, yeah.

And instead, focus on what's been MISSING.

For me, the biggest ones are better multiplayer and the city becoming more decrepit in its incarnations every time.

My dream would probably be a game with the main street and layout of New Leaf, customisation of New Horizons, but with a HUGE city you can travel to. Lumiose-sized. Living, breathing, live, friends can pop into the city in real time with no "connecting... Connected! Someone's coming over..." Talk to city slickers, invite them to your town, convince shop owners to open branches on your main street, donate to the park and show off creations, rent an apartment so you start in the city when you open the game. I'm a bit of a gigantic city/transport nerd, so the idea of them just... Embracing the city concept and tying it together with a train aesthetic/theme tickles me pink.

Repetitious, maybe, but I think the idea is pretty clear: big city, online city, lots of city.
 
I've been enjoying reading through your ideas @Raccoon :)

I don't really have any creative ideas to put out, I just really liked the 'main street' part of ACNL that was a separate but connected area to your town, and I was sad they backed away from that in ACNH (Harv's Island sucked especially at launch). I'd rather not have islands again either, the vibe that you were entirely alone never really sat well with me.
 
Please refrain from using ethnic cleansing as the punchline for a joke. -xghost777, Zellia, big lantern ghost, meatbag
If I were at Nintendo, I would put a limit on how many villagers of a single species could be in a village (so that people won't just kick out villagers of other species to have a one-species village), but I would intentionally not include it in the initial release, so that there could be a new update with

Patch notes:
- Stopped ethnic cleansing
 
  • Much more personality and varied dialogue
  • No breakable tools bs
  • No focus on building
  • More places and important NPCs
  • A bit more stylized graphics
 
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This was my first AC and while I enjoyed it during the lockdowns. I wonder if I'd enjoy the next one, AC games seem to be about paying off your debt, I'd like something more than that.
 
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Mine are fairly unambitious as I have no idea what to expect from the next Nintendo console. Mine mostly have a theme of feeling more connected.

Assuming the next iteration has town customisation included, I'd like some optional 'passive' multiplayer communication added to the game. Maybs when you visit a Dream Address you can drop tile, stand on it, and do a reaction. That reaction gets saved as 'ghost data' to the Dream Address that replays the reaction via prompt. Then the town owner can visit their own Dream Address to see the avatars of their visitors reacting. It would give a feeling that you're involved in the community even if you play completely solo.

Adding to already discussed: the new town setting should have a train/bus, so while not necessarily connected to other players, it feels like we are. One stop on the transport network is a multiplayer hub with other live players, as well as asynchronous player ghosts. The hub has trading posts, and a way to engage in multiplayer minigames/activities and swap DAs/patterns. In my mind its a spot focussed on interactions with randoms and/or friends.

While were adding more life to the game, past villagers could occasionally turn up and roam around your town - or they're spotted inside shops/cafe/museum/resident houses without the need for amiibo for cute impromptu reunions.

If there's terraforming, I'd like the addition of beach-alteration and river-re-mouthing. I don't need much more in the way of terraforming, but the ability to make non-square shores would be nice.. and being able to have cliffs into the sea, as opposed to needing a beach border, would be a nice touch.

But mostly I'd like to give my animal friends some hugs and high-5s.
 
While were adding more life to the game, past villagers could occasionally turn up and roam around your town - or they're spotted inside shops/cafe/museum/resident houses without the need for amiibo for cute impromptu reunions.
This actually happened in New Leaf!
 
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A full house builder mode that could rival The Sims. Walls, doors, windows everything. Nook could enlarge the lot we build on with payments.
I need two house one bridge concept in there


But yeah I think we all want a online social hub. Some of the basic I want change is the neighbors stop moping around so much and stop telling me how many months it has been since we last talk. Also, give me an option to not allow them in my house.
 
I need two house one bridge concept in there


But yeah I think we all want a online social hub. Some of the basic I want change is the neighbors stop moping around so much and stop telling me how many months it has been since we last talk. Also, give me an option to not allow them in my house.
?????

damn man you fucking hate those fools
 


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