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Picture a world populated by walking and talking animals, where the sun often shines, fish swim and flowers and trees grow, all in cutesy 3D style. This is the world of Animal Crossing New Leaf, the third game in the series, and your mission, should you choose to accept it is to be the mayor of this utopia and decide its destiny in a real time, open ended game.
I shouldn't, I have to say, have spent quite as much time playing this as I have, but it's been my daughter's favourite DS game since she got it for her birthday a few months ago, and due to the fact that it requires some support to get going for a younger child; there's a fair bit of reading and getting used to the environment, and also following an unfortunate incident where she accidentally erased her entire world, I have spent a fair bit of time playing with her and trying to recoup the damage. This has been much more fun than it sounds due to the fact that Animal Crossing is somehow an engrossing and fun game for adults and children alike.
The game starts with your arrival in your town and continues as you become mayor and build up your own house and the town through the accruing of the town currency, bells, which you earn in varied ways in the town whose fate you hold in your hands. Bells can be earned in a number of ways, from fishing and catching and selling fish, to trapping mini beasts, trading turnips or reaping fruit. There are no set missions as such, you wander around town in real time deciding what you want to do and "talking" to the other inhabitants. The game really has lots of different possibilities, which is what makes it so compelling. As mayor you can choose town projects to complete and as the game unfolds there are special events such as firework displays to attend, all in real time. This game makes full use of the potential of this hand held console and it's very easy to pick up and play as the button use is intuitive and well thought out. It's easy to pick up items, use nets and spades and to navigate around with the 3DS joystick. You can also take photos of gameplay and share them. One thing you must remember to do is to save the game regularly as there is no automatic update - we learned this the hard way when the battery ran out and gameplay was not saved.
The 3D graphics are excellent, although we tend to play with the 3D button turned down, which is our preference. You will need to have the sound turned up most of the time though, which does drain the battery and grate on the nerves a little after a while due to the jingly jangly childlike music, but sound is essential for the catching of fish. There's quite a knack to this and other parts of the game, luckily the net is full of videos and tips from other players of the game, we have had to make use of these in order to progress through the game.
You can also connect to other players through the game itself, visit their towns and receive visits yourself. We haven't had much success in this feature as yet, but you can also play cooperatively at short range and via street pass. I think that what makes this game so excellent is the way it evolves, there are continual surprises, a new shop opens, there is a new island to visit and characters come and go. Gameplay, whilst not educational as such, does get a child thinking about how you earn and budget money. At times you have to make some interesting choices - do you sell that fossil you have dug up for money or choose to donate and display it at the town museum? My daughter has really enjoyed the customisation of the game, designing her own Mii, her town flag and tune and revelling in taking photos of her exploits. Playing can be quite addictive, if you've overdone it a little the game's characters do gently tell you to have a rest! Even with their strange babbling language, some of the characters become quite real to the player and my daughter enjoys interacting with them and carrying out tasks to help them. It's all great fun and just the right level of challenge, the possibilities seem endless and the game is always evolving.
There's a reason why this is a top selling game, and I think it's well worth the rrp of £30 (we found it slightly cheaper by shopping around). I think this is the best game we have played on this console and I would highly recommend it, it's gentle, cutesy and just great fun to play.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the new addition to the Animal Crossing franchise. There hasn't been an Animal Crossing for DS since March 2006. This means it has been well over seven years since the last one was created and distributed. The previous one for DS is called Wild World and I had it when the DS first came out. Since then there has been three models of the DS and now for the current model they have brought out New Leaf. However, New Leaf makes Wild World look like nothing. I have been a huge fan of Animal Crossing since 2006, I even have Let's Go To The City for the Wii.
From the very beginning of New Leaf you notice a lot of differences in comparison to Wild World. The first that is noticeable is the graphics and the way you enter the game. Instead of it being in a cab it is a train. This helps you to acknowledge the games advancement. However, you customise your character in the same way as you did in Wild World. You also answer the same type of questions. Second, as soon as you arrive you get to choose your own town map layout, I believe it is a choice between four maps and then if you don't choose it goes back to the first. Also, you get to choose where to place your property within the town itself. At first the town looks more like a camp site but the more you progress the more it changes. The main and key feature to this game is that you also start as the Mayor of the town. I could list the infinite changes in this new edition of Animal Crossing, but I would be here forever. I will leave some for the element of surprise, but the main thing you need to know is that this game is completely different to the previous version.
For those who have never heard of this game before, you need to know it is a virtual game and it is pretty much like a high tech Tamagotchi. You go around in real time exploring the island, looking after the animals that live there and caring for the town and its amusements. When I say animals I don't mean dogs that bark and cows that moo. They all walk around on two legs and talk fluent English. If you prefer action packed games with lots of fighting I highly suggest you do not get this game. As this game is in real time you may find it a tad boring for your liking.
One of the new key features in this game is that you can connect to wifi and play online with others. From my experience this is very fun. You can go to Tortimer Island and play a lot of mini games. Yes, this virtual game now has two Islands and mini games. You can also swim and dive providing you have the suit from Tortimer Island. The town is also trickier to update as it takes a certain amount of days and money for things to unlock. Tortimer Island does not unlock right away and if you are like me then you may find the first few days on this game a little boring. There are also better ways of furnishing your house and clothes because now you can have the choice of creating your own designs and printing them onto your own furniture. The main thing I like about this game is that you can personalise it. The best part is your house. You can choose and design your own furniture and you also find that the other houses of animals living there has their own unique design. This game is one step better as you can now design the outside of your house as well.
I would have reviewed this when it first come out like the others but the fact stands that you cannot review this game properly the first day you get it because you can't unlock most things until after 10 days of having this game. I really love this game and a lot more than Wild World. I highly recommend in getting this game if you are a fan of the franchise. You can buy this game on Ebay for £29.99 with a free slip case or from anywhere else for £29.99 for just the game.
If you're a fan of the Animal Crossing series, then this game is definitely for you. If you haven't heard/haven't played any of the games in the series then let me quickly explain it for you. Animal Crossing is a series of games in which you move to a town which is filled with animal villagers. You then basically do whatever you want, there aren't really any goals. There are many different things you can do; pay off your mortgage to get a bigger house, collect fossils, go fishing or go shopping for clothes and furniture.
Being a big fan of the Animal Crossing series, I bought New Leaf as soon as it came out, and i'm glad I did. Animal Crossing: New Leaf is different from the other games in the series for one main reason- you're now the mayor of the town. This means that you can control how the town is run, by setting new ordinances; which are like laws. An example of an ordinance is that for a fee of 20,000 bells (bells are the currency used in Animal Crossing) you can make it so the shops stay open later and villagers don't go to bed too early. As mayor, you can also start Public Work Projects. These projects are things that have been requested by the villagers that could make your town a better place; either through appearance of utility. For example, you can raise money to build a fountain in your town, or build a lighthouse. I must mention here, by raising money, it's usually just the bells that you deposit, as so far in the game I don't think any of my villagers have donated much money to my projects. But, if they did it all for you, it wouldn't be fun, right?
Another new feature to Animal Crossing: New Leaf, is the ability to catch a boat to go to a tropical island. This boat has the ability to hold you and 3 other friends, or if you're like me, you can just go by yourself. This being because I don't know anyone else with the game! Anyway, upon arrival to the island, you will notice that it is very sunny; this is because it's always summer on the island, giving you the ability to catch bugs and fish which you may not be able to find in your town due to the season. On the island you can go on tours, which are held by the previous mayor of Animal Crossing games, Tortimer. These tours are mini games which you can play to collect tokens which you can spend on the island to buy unique furniture and clothing. On the island you can purchase a diving suit, which is a great feature, as in the previous games you could not even paddle in the water, let alone dive in it! Now you can catch ocean creatures by diving in and grabbing them, which is quite fun to do!
The best thing about Animal Crossing: New Leaf in my opinion is that everyday something new is bound to happen, whether it be something small like a new villager moving into the town or daily stock changes in the shop or something big like a new building/project being built or an event such as the 'Bug Off' being held. There is always something to do on Animal Crossing, and there can always be something to keep you occupied, like by saving your bells up for a new piece of furniture or a house upgrade.
I haven't personally had much experience with the multiplayer aspect of this game due to the fact that I don't know anyone else who has the game that I could play with. However, to play online you need to register each other's friend codes, and you can easily play with people you don't know by exchanging friend codes on the internet; and this is completely safe as long as you don't give any personal information when playing with each other in game.
The game moves in real life time, so when it's day time in real life, it's day time in the game; the same goes with evening. I think this is a really nice and unique feature which you don't often get with other games, and can help to improve people's patience, as you do often have to wait overnight for things to be built!
As this game is for the 3DS, it does have 3D capabilities, however, personally when I have the 3D turned on, I don't think it makes much difference with this particular game; therefore I usually play with it turned off to conserve battery. So I wouldn't go buying an expensive 3DS just to play this game, but if you do already have a 3DS then the game is definitely worth the purchase!
Overall, I think Animal Crossing: New Leaf is a great game and well worth the money I paid for it! If you like games that are relaxing and don't involve shooting and action then I suggest you give this game a try. It's suitable for all ages, my younger siblings like to play it, I'm in my late teens and I love to play it, and my mum also enjoys watching me play it; although she doesn't like video games so doesn't play it herself.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the new entry into the Animal Crossing series and the first version available for the 3DS. For anyone who doesn't know what Animal Crossing is, it's a game where you live in a town... full of animal people... and that's about it. It makes sense to state now that there is no kind of fighting or killing in this game (apart from the cockroaches you occasionally find in your house), so if you're a gamer who likes action at every turn with explosions going off every five seconds this game is certainly not for you.
The game begins on a train, and after answering a few questions such as your name and gender you arrive at your destination. The destination being the town which you want to move into, but unfortunately (or fortunately , depending on your views on work in video games) the animals at your new home think you're the new mayor! This is the gimmick which Nintendo have added to this entry in the series, and honestly it doesn't really add all that much to the game. Sure you can commission 'Public works projects' in which things can be constructed in the town such as bridges and fountains, all through the 'generous' donations of the townsfolk (these donations are so tiny, you might as well pay for it yourself). Admittedly, for me it felt quite good to be mayor but there simply aren't enough perks which come with the title. Luckily Nintendo have promised to add free DLC (downloadable content) for the game throughout the year so they may in fact add more features for upcoming mayors. As I mentioned before, this game is very relaxed. It will be physically impossible to complete everything the game has to offer in a few days, after all your house as an example takes a day to build. Nintendo have been very clever in making you play the game every day by making it impossible to burn through everything in a few hours. Each day will offer something new, for example I have participated in fishing tournaments and huge games of hide and seek which all help you to appreciate your town as if it was truly real. I personally love the laid back nature this game has, it provides a break from the massive blockbuster games where killing and depression is rampant and offers a more refined (unbelievably addictive) experience.
Part of the appeal of Animal Crossing for me over the years is that the game leaves you to collect furniture for your house. You can decorate your house in any way you like and you'll find yourself trying to complete sets of furniture, and I believe this is where the game becomes so addictive. Finding that piece of furniture you have been searching for provides such a rush of excitement (that sounds ridiculous but it's true honestly!) There are variety of shops within the game which restock every day with new items for you to buy, and you will find yourself waking up in the morning and hurriedly checking the new items in the shops. Each Animal you meet in the game has a different style, you will never meet anyone who acts the same and this makes it an enjoyable experience to simply chat with them and occasionally help them out with their problems (for a reward of course). By making them so unique and likeable I actually became upset when some of my favourites moved away! Yes, I do think I am going insane. But it isn't all sun shine and daisies with these characters, certain characters will say the same thing over and over again which can get old quite quickly (fortunately you can hold down 'B' to make this text go faster)
Some of the new features in this instalment is the implementation of online multiplayer, by utilising this you can visit your friends towns and even send them present through the in game post system. By visiting other peoples towns you can find items which simply do not exist in your now, such as different kinds of fruit. Because of this it becomes exciting to receive what in your town is extremely rare. The multiplayer isn't simply limited to this though, and island is present in each town where you and your friends can participate in various mini games such as bug catching and hide and seek. Admittedly, these become quite stale quickly but you do receive medallions which can be traded in for items which will increase your attention span. The online also makes use of the 3DS' Spot pass system, this allows you to carry your DS in your pocket while receiving data from other DS' you encounter along the way. The data received comes in the form of other people dreams which can then be explored without damage to each others towns, this is a very interesting feature which unfortunately never delivers here in Britain and is probably more suited to the cities of Japan.
Ultimately, my experience with this game is on going. I know I will continue to play this game just for the different events which occur every day, and also to feed my addiction for Animal Crossing furniture! To anyone looking for a game which doesn't take itself too seriously I would certainly recommend this game, you'll certainly get your moneys worth.