Animal Crossing: New Leaf has been out for nearly four years (in fact, we are coming up on its anniversary next week), and Nintendo is still adding to it. Earlier today by way of a Nintendo Direct, the famous developer revealed that a brand new update for the game is available now, and it is a big one. This update adds new minigames, new villagers, a slew of Nintendo fan service, and even a brand new area for players to explore and discover.
Before you can even begin, however, players will have to find an old friend: Wisp. Animal Crossing fans may remember Wisp as a secret character that provided various bonuses to the player in both the original game and City Folks, but he was sadly left out in New Leaf. Wisp has finally returned as the game’s way of allowing players to use Amiibo and Amiibo cards. Players will first have to find the magic lamp that Wisp hides in before they can do anything, so you better get to searching!
Amiibo support is where the meat of this update lies; almost everything you can do stems off of what Amiibo you may or may not have. There are fifty new Amiibo cards that fans can collect, featuring what are described as “lost” villagers. All fifty of these villagers can be convinced to move into your village by way of a brand new campgrounds area. Basically, once you have found Wisp, you can scan an Amiibo card that then prompts the character on the card to make a trip to the campgrounds in their own custom RV.
At the campgrounds, players can enter and explore each new villager’s RV, which all feature brand new items that can be purchased using a new currency called “MEOW coupons,” and recruit them to join their village. In addition to the new cards, previous Amiibo cards will work, though older cards will not include an RV to explore or purchase items from. Players can also scan Amiibo figures, such as KK Slider, to get various goodies such as the new in-game Nintendo Wii U and 3DS consoles.
Both of these items allow access to minigames. When players use the virtual Wii U, it will start Desert Island Escape, a Minecraft-like board game where a group of animals must collect resources and craft supplies to get off of a desert island in a limited time. The 3DS lets users play Animal Crossing Puzzle League, a connect-three puzzle game that features the return of Tortimer, who is attempting to reclaim his throne as mayor of your village. Fortunately, if you do not own any Animal Crossing Amiibo, you can also win these items as prizes in Timmy and Tommy’s fortune cookie contest.
Finally, players can scan other Amiibo franchises as well. The Callie, Marie, and Inkling Squid Splatoon Amiibo will all unlock a new villager based off of their characters as well as unlocking Splatoon-based decorations. Legend of Zelda Amiibo will unlock Wolf Link, Medli, Ganon, and Epona as villagers, as well as a few new Zelda decorations and outfits. No other franchises were expressly mentioned, though it probably won’t hurt to experiment just a little.
Amiibo support is not where this update ends, however. There is still plenty for those of you who are less inclined to go out searching high and low for plastic figures. Most notably, the game now features a New Game+ of sorts. Players can choose to sell their town to the egregious Tom Nook for an exorbitant amount of bells that can be brought into a brand new town (it’s not clear how much work went into the initial town, but the example in the Direct shows Nook paying out 15 million bells to the player). While not the reason explicitly stated for this existing, this seems to be a fantastic way for anyone who has not played the game in a while to get into this update without having to worry about the state of their current town.
The update also includes a new camera mode, similar to the Miitomo camera, where players can take photos of themselves and place their villagers around them in various silly poses. There are a few new housekeeping updates as well, including a “secret storeroom,” which acts as a storage menu for all of your items. The update even implements some of Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer‘s organizational tools, such as moving furniture with the stylus. In fact, players can even import their Happy Home Designer files to get 20 special decorations that are simply described as “giant.”
As you can tell, this update is huge. Which makes it all the more exciting that it is completely free on the 3DS eShop as of today. Anyone with Animal Crossing: New Leaf should definitely check it out if any of the above interests you.
What do you think of the new update? Are there any villagers you definitely want to live in your town? Let us know in the comments below!