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Animal Crossing has a special place in my heart. I’m not sure if it’s the gibberish-like Animalese the inhabitants speak, or the incredibly entertaining upkeep of towns and friendships, but I love it. Maybe it’s the monotonous daily work like pulling weeds and picking up fruit that keeps me coming back.

Animal Crossing: New Leaf on the Nintendo 3DS was a huge hit, so the next iteration in the franchise has some lofty expectations to live up to. That’s where Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer comes into play.

Happy Home Designer will be on the Nintendo 3Ds and will not adhere to the classic gameplay so many have grown to love. Instead, the focus here, like the title hints at, will be all about designing homes and buildings in general. Now, instead of owing insurmountable amounts of money to Tom Nook, you work for this money hungry monster. Plot twist!


Releasing alongside the full retail game will be amiibo cards (just when you thought these things couldn’t get anymore collectible). These cards will allow you to always have your favorite characters on hand. Don’t want to wait for a certain towns member to appear, simple scan them in and like magic, there they are. Need more incentive to collect these soon to be extremely rare items? Certain “special” characters will require you to have their respective card in order to build their sweet crib.

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Despite the different gameplay choice, it’s still Animal Crossing, minus all the chores. Just build to your hearts content. Let’s be honest, they could have simply cashed on the success of New Leaf, so it’s commendable that they are changing it up. At this point it is hard to guess whether it will pay off or not. My biggest concern is the reward system. Sure, creating and dreaming up new homes is fun in itself, but how long will that last? I have full confidence in the teams ability to provide a rewarding experience, they’ve delivered before. Unfortunately we will have to wait until September when these questions are answered.

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