Animal Crossing: New Horizons Gives a Fun Yet Flawed Island Life

May 1, 2020 | 1 Votes by Mikhail 10 rate Your vote
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is undoubtedly one of the best games of the year, providing people with a much-needed respite in these trying times. Though it has gained raving reviews, it has major flaws we cannot overlook. WWGDB - Animal Crossing: New Horizons Gives a Fun Yet Flawed Island Life

Animal Crossing: New Horizons smashed records, selling five million copies digital copies. It became a mainstream favorite, thanks to its cutesy art style and the fact that it’s an adorable life simulator that enables us to hang out with our friends and family. In a nutshell, the gameplay revolves around you living an island life, improving your home, paying loans, and designing an entire island from scratch, making it beautiful for yourself and fellow residents. You’ll plant flowers, craft items, and interact with a cast of totally adorable characters.

You can create your own flower beds in Animal Crossing

In my case, it’s my first-ever Animal Crossing, and quite frankly, it’s a title I wouldn’t buy unless compelled to (which I was). It exceeded expectations and there’s no way I’ll stop playing it any time soon: it’s just so much fun to design your island and see its progress. However, New Horizons isn’t without its flaws and is in dire need of numerous quality-of-life improvements. It’s not a bad game by any means, but there are just aspects we cannot overlook.

Craft in bulk

Buying and selling requires you to go through a lot of dialogue

One of the biggest complaints about New Horizons is the crafting aspect. There is no way to craft in bulk - you need to do so one at a time which is a huge chore. To add to that, you have to wait through an entire animation of your character showing the item off and a few seconds of dialogue which wastes precious time. This is more problematic if you’re trying to craft items like fish bait in bulk. A 10-second task will be turned into a 10-minute one. It’s a little frustrating.

Sure, this may have been the way the game is built, but come on, we’re sure not everyone wants to button-mash the A button a hundred times to craft a handful of items. Plus, you have to make sure the item is in your inventory before you craft, even at home. This means you have to take the materials from your storage. Here’s to hoping that Nintendo will put an update enabling players to make items in bulk.

Exhausting and repetitive dialogue

There's a lot of dialogue in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Yes Blathers, we know furthering the cultural aspect of our island is a noble endeavor. Ok, Leif, we’re aware that you have amazing seeds and saplings. And Sahara, you’ve said that bells (the in-game currency) make you happy.

Dialogue is fine, but when it’s repetitive, it gets exhausting and frustrating. Unfortunately, this is the case when performing tasks such as donating specimens to your museum or just purchasing items from NPCs. We can roughly estimate that players have spent a quarter of their time in-game in a dialogue. Worse, none of them are skippable, so you’ll have no choice but to button mash and waste precious seconds.

No option to buy in bulk in Nook’s Cranny and Able Sisters

Flying is also a pain in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

A large part of Animal Crossing: New Horizons is purchasing items from Nook’s Cranny which sells furniture and other necessities and Able Sisters which sell clothes.

Unfortunately, there’s no way streamlined way to buy in bulk in both stores. The same can be said about Sahara, who sells rugs, wallpapers, and flooring, as well as Leif who sells saplings and flower seeds. It’s frustrating, considering that you’ll have to go through a wall of dialogue to get what you want first. In the case of the Nook’s Cranny and Able Sisters, you have to walk to the item and interact with it in order to purchase it. Sure, there’s a dressing room in the latter, but

We can’t understand why you can’t just pop up a purchase window and buy from there. This gets more puzzling since the game already has this feature in the form of the Nook Shop which you can access in the Resident Services building.

Dodo Airlines

Here's to hoping Nintendo streamlines the entire game in the future

Animal Crossing lets you visit other players’ islands via a Dodo Code or to other deserted ones to gather materials and invite potential villagers who somehow ended up there.

Unfortunately, doing this is as much of a hassle as traveling in real-life. Why? Again, you have to go through a mountain of dialogue steps to get to the option you want. It’s frustrating and a complete waste of time especially if you consider that it could have been more simple to just streamline the entire process. This is further compounded by the extremely long waiting time it gets to travel and cutscene interruptions whenever someone else enters the island.

Quality of life on a life sim is must for island living

It's bad if you want to craft multiple pieces of fish bait

Overall, Animal Crossing is a beloved game but it just has a number of pain points Nintendo needs to fix. Eventually, we hope that everything, from the purchasing to traveling will be streamlined and that we don’t have to go through chunks of dialogue before getting what we came for.

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