Animal Crossing New Leaf was already an amazing game when it was released in 2013, and this update makes it even better for returning fans.
The biggest addition to the game is its compatibility with Amiibo, something that didn't exist when the game originally released. Once you've unlocked the character Wisp, a genie in a bottle, you are given the opportunity to scan the Animal Crossing series of Amiibo figures and cards into the game. Scanning these allows you to invite villagers to a campground where you can buy new items and invite them to join your town.
Did I say campground? Yup. This update adds a new area to your town where all of the characters you invite through Amiibo come and camp in mobile homes. The camp is run by a new character named Harvey, a hippy homeless dog who runs a little rummage sale with new items for you to buy. He only accepts a new currency called MEOW coupons for his items, so you'll need to learn how to use a new currency to take full advantage of what he sells.
MEOW coupons are earned in a few ways. Whenever you scan an Amiibo, you are given a few coupons, but the main way to earn MEOW coupons is through daily challenges. These challenges range from decorating your home, to watering a certain amount of flowers in a day. When you complete a challenge, you are rewarded with coupons, which adds objective based gameplay to a game not known for challenges. I’m always open to more things to do in Animal Crossing!
While Amiibo and challenges are great and all, I was more excited to try out the “quality of life” features added to the game. You can sit on rocks and cushions, shake trees while holding one handed equipment, and can share pictures to social networks from in the game itself. Once you pay off your current loan from Tom Nook, you're given the opportunity to add an additional storage to hold items in your house. With storage space being a huge problem in the original version of the game, this is such a great feature!
Alongside additional storage, you are given a completely new way to organize furniture in your home. Taking the amazing UI from Happy Home Designer, you can now organize your home with a touchscreen. The one thing I loved the most from Happy Home Designer made its way into the main game, and I am so thankful that it did!
Overall, the update is not a huge change from the main game. If you love New Leaf and have a bunch of Amiibo sitting on your shelf, this is an update worth checking out. If you have not played the game, it's not enough content by itself to entice new players.
However, with the game being part of Nintendo Selects, this opens the game up to a new wave of players. With a $19.99 price point, the barrier for entry is low, and all the new features will make a newcomers’ experience much smoother.
If you haven't played Animal Crossing New Leaf, check it out! I know I'll be playing it for many more months to come!