The game itself seems simple enough, you start out creating your own character. They ask a bunch of questions of you and form a profile that matches your answers. Your eye and hair colour and even hair style are influenced by the questions. Once you have a profile, you are picked up by this taxi driven by a crazy peacock. It’s raining out and so he’s trying to drive you to a new town. He asks you questions about how you prefer things, if you’d prefer a picnic at the ocean or beside a waterfall. Once our questions are done – Voila! You are in a new town, that you get to name yourself. You’ll find that there are neighbours and trees and flowers.
First up, you need to do some work at the store. You have to earn yourself a house right? Well it helps you to get acquainted with the town and the people in it. You get used to the controls and how to do things. Finishing the work is easy, and then it’s time to play the game. Your goal is to design the perfect town and the perfect house. Decoration is all up to you and they give you many clever options to make your house unique.
The only trick is that you have to continue to play the game, in order to make money, which allows you to buy more furniture and supplies for your house. Also, the more you do, you can also add on rooms and get unique items. Your neighbours always need a hand – either with furniture, or catching bugs or fish. They want you to help mail letters for them and generally, you do all of it, because they give you prizes and if you are lucky – their picture.
James introduced me to the game back in 2005/2006. I’ve been playing ever since. That is a long time!!!
One room that has been the ultimate goal of any Animal Crossing player is the snowman room. By rolling up snowballs, you can create snowmen. Only by hving perfect snowmen, do you get presents. Wallpaper, carpet, bed, sofa, chair, lamp, clock, fridge, dresser, television and the final piece of the pie – An actual snowman for your room.
James, who played long before me in his town, wasn’t very good at this feat. What he didn’t know, was that by building the snowmen every day, you get a new item each day. By doing a perfect snowman one day, and not the next and then a perfect one – you will only get the same item as you did on the first day. Somehow – I have succeeded in getting enough furniture to fill two rooms – and I have extras left over. (Yes – I really am that dorky.)
In 2008, I have tried to not play the game. I really REALLY wanted to stop. Problem is, when you don’t play you start to get weeds and all your flowers die because you forgot to water them. Your house gets bugs, and the people in the town start to get angry and upset feelings because you haven’t come to visit them. Also, if you don’t play, then you start to worry that you missed something wonderful, like the aurora borealis, or a special fish that only comes out during certain times of day or season.
Yesterday – I caved. I had to find out what was going on in my town. I found all these weeds and had to run around pulling them. Every person in town accused me of not liking them anymore, and mostly all of the flowers have died or are on the verge. I watered the plants, made sure no one was sick and got out of the game as fast as I could.
Why, can I NOT move on? It’s not like Newton really means anything! And yet when I heard that my nephew got a DS, I wondered if he would get Animal Crossing because I want a bigger store. Isnt’ that the dorkiest thing you have ever heard? In Animal Crossing, you can go visit other peoples towns and by doing so you get different benefits. The bigger store I want is really cool because it has two stories, and a hair salon. I really hate my hair!
Unfortunately the game isn’t nearly as popular as it once was. I don’t know how it’s going to happen, but someday, somehow, I will stop playing and stop caring what happens in my town.
Until then, it’s an obsession that I will not let go of – Even with my crappy hair in the game. At least I get cute hats!