Animal Crossing New Horizons is Different
It does not happen to me that I’m playing a video game every day – almost as a routine -, without even noticing how much time I actually invest in the game and how little I actually achieve. In most of the games I play I’m looking for challenges and want to achieve something: master the level, find all collectibles, discover secret areas, beat bosses, win races, or solve puzzles. Usually, when playing my favorite video game series such as Mario, Donkey Kong, Zelda, Banjo-Kazooie, or Yooka-Laylee, I’m always getting to a point where the game feels like a challenge. In a fun way for sure, but nevertheless competitive in such a way, that I cannot relax while playing after a long working day or on the weekends, which usually requires some warm-up time to get back into the controls to play as efficiently as you were a few days ago.
So when for instance attempting to master the “Final Kingdom” in Super Mario Odyssey*, “The Darker Side”, or trying to beat “The Impossible Lair” (the OG version) in Yooka-Laylee and The Impossible Lair*, I had to ban my girlfriend from the living room because I needed full concentration. So understandable, that you cannot relax with such challenging video game moments when being exhausted. But Animal Crossing New Horizons (ACNH) is different and fills exactly this void for me personally: Playing a video game in a relaxing atmosphere without the necessity to time jumps accurately or to study different patterns or hit zones of enemies in order to proceed.
In the following blog post I’d like to take you on a journey through my first 100 hours in ACNH and share my personal highlights. You might all have experienced similar scenes on your island, but in these difficult days where staying home is the recommended option, moments where we can walk and meet freely digitally, can be much more appreciated. Please note that the article may contain spoilers, although I’ll not focus on the storyline.
Benny Kong’s Arrival on BK Isle
What a crazy coincidence! How does the game know that me, Benny Kong who is supposed to be a Kong, coming directly from the Donkey Kong universe, provides me with two other monkeys as my fellow villagers? No better neighbors than Flip and Rocket!
Can you remember “them days”, waking up to the sound of your brand-new Hi-Fi stereo system was pumping? CD1, track 10? This is what I felt when waking up in my tent on BK Isle the very first morning.
This is what I’d like to do: Chillax, let the world go by, and play some Nintendo Switch. This picture stands for the majority of my working weeks in March and April 2020: Having a little break with ACNH after all the online meetings were done, spending some minutes on the island, just to get back fresh to the desk to wrap up the working day.
Mabel’s First Visit
…. and there she is! BK Isle definitely needs a bigger variety of clothes to shop than the limited apparel Tim Nook has to offer, so I am happy to see Mabel visiting and having a little merch stand. Flip knows what I’m talking about.
Drop-Off Box, But Only 80%?
Nahh, not with Benny Kong! I don’t know what your strategy is, but I actually wanted to sell my hard caught bugs or fishes for 100% of the market price, and not only for 80%. So to skip the handling fee and sell for the entire shop trade-in value, I hoarded my valuable goods every night just right in front of Nook’s Cranny …
… or directly near the beach. That’s how you cash in big-time the next morning in Animal Crossing New Horizons!
My First Flight
It was time to do some island hopping and pay the airport a visit. My first trip was actually about visiting my friend Marco’s island, who you may remember from my very first blogpost on Benny Kong. It was super fun! Visiting friends in Animal Crossing New Horizons is actually a wonderful thing – not only because of the difficult times of confinement in current times. Stay tuned, as I’m planning to dedicate an entire blogpost on visiting friends in ACNH.
Not only Forrest Gump, but also my villagers consider the bench on BK Island as the perfect spot to have proper chat. In particular in the beginning of the game, since there were not many other attractions on the island, the bench came in handy and was visited frequently.
First Rain on BK Island
Nothing new in The Legend of Zelda – Breath of the Wild*, but in Animal Crossing New Horizons I had to wait almost 2 weeks (although I played daily), to see my first rain. Here you see me posing in front of the newly built Nook’s Cranny.
… or rocking my brand-new, customized designed BK Cap while fishing. Fishing in the rain! Did you know that fishing on a rainy day is the only possibility to catch a Coelacanth? Infamous for being one of the rarest fish in the Animal Crossing series, Coelacanth is back in New Horizons. Another benefit of having rain in ACNH is that you don’t have to water any flowers on a rainy day.
The Museum is Built!
And another highlight – and I don’t mean the exclusive BK shirt that my girlfriend designed kindly for me: After donating sufficient unique creatures to Blathers, the loquacious owl decides to move permanently to the island and upgrades the tent museum into a proper one. That’s how you unlock the museum in Animal Crossing New Horizons*. Splendidly! At the time of writing, I’m considering moving the museum a bit more up north.
Ain’t No Party as a Rocket Party …
… as a Rocket party dooooon’t stop! I was pleasantly surprised when I entered Rocket’s house to find her celebrating her birthday together with Flip. Too kind that they both even waited for me to kick off the celebrations.
A bit of a bummer: As you probably can see from the timestamp: Since I came empty-handed (never got an official invite to the party tho), I quickly left the party to check out my storage in order to find a present for Rocket. By the time I got back to her place, the party stopppped.
Mystery Island Tours
A great way to refill the stocks on wood, weeds, stones, clay or iron nuggets or even find new types of flowers in ACNH, are Mystery Island Tours. But there is also the chance to find a random villager on these islands, that can be talked into moving to your island as a permanent resident. That’s how I found one of my favorite villagers as of now: Alfonso.
BK is Taking Applications …
… for new villagers to move in. Here I proudly crafted all the required items for a villager after placing the housing kit. Tom Nook was obviously happy with my work. And the fact that I’m literally working for free, but that’s what we all do, don’t we?
You Gotta Love What the Villagers Are Up to
It’s always super nice to discover what your villagers are up to! Here you see Rocket doing some serious weight lifting in the middle of the night. I’m still looking for this dumbbell or her sports jacket. Anybody happen to have a spare jacket in their storage?
BK Isle Has a New Villager …
… and not only “a” new villager: My girlfriend decided to join BK Isle. After watching me playing for almost a month, and being actually involved in core decisions such as naming the island, placing the first bridge, the museum or Nook’s Crannys, my girlfriend was ready to start her own digital island adventure on the not-so-anymore-deserted-island in Animal Crossing New Horizons. Important side note: Since the launch of the Nintendo Switch on March 3, 2017, my girlfriend played maybe 1 hour in total. So this was indeed a big step and speaks for Animal Crossing New Horizons as a game – and for reaching new target groups.
What the hole!
What was that? After playing ACNH for more than a month, there are always surprises and animations I haven’t seen before. Lovely.
Ready for My Second Room
Time to pay that loan and to expand my house, but what to do with the second room? An office, a bedroom? Or a kitchen? I actually still don’t know yet, and that’s why I’m using the room for the time-being to store some items I have some ideas for what to do with. The same applies to the 3rd and 4th room that I already unlocked by the way, haha.
May Day Tour!
The May Day labyrinth was actually more challenging than expected. I made it to Rover (first trial!), but did not manage to reach all Bell Vouchers. Challenge accepted, labyrinth reset – and playing it for the second time, I was able to be more resourceful with my items in order to reach all Bell Tickets.
I even developed my own little strategy to save the shovel, but found out later on Twitter, that the shovel will not break while attempting to master the labyrinth anyways.
Part of my daily routine is to visit the Mabel shop to hunt for some new clothes. I really love it and try to combine as many styles as possible.
And coincidentally my alter ego Benny Kong also likes to match shorts with boots – something my girlfriend tells me every summer, that these two don’t go along …
My Cousin is in Town
I love art and appreciate the Animal Crossing New Horizons May update! The addition of Redd visiting the island once and while is quite fun and I enjoy this little art shopping on his ship.
Resident Services Make-Over
What a great moment! Tom Nook is finally packing his stuff to move in a bigger, proper building. I had to screenshot my last visit to the Resident Services tent and documented the further process. Let’s all welcome Isabelle as the newest member of the Resident Services staff and let’s celebrate the Resident Services upgrade.
Midnight Beach Walks
Loving the walks along the beach during the night! I would not mind also going for a stroll daytime, but most of the time I play Animal Crossing New Horizons* late in the night – after work and dinner. But when the weekend kicks in, I’m looking forward to enjoying the beauty of the island during the daytime. Time to appreciate the sunshine and to put on my digital sun blocker!
Campside is Built!
I can’t state that I’m a big camping fan myself, but at the moment the campsite is my favorite part of BK island. Another commemorative photo of the inauguration, plus having our first campsite visitor, Eugene, the smug koala villager, that eventually moved to our island.
My First Villager Invite via amiibo
Finally! Our first campsite visitor that we selected via amiibo. Directly after the Animal Crossing: New Horizons Direct in February 2020 (watch here), I was lucky to snag some amiibo cards* before prices skyrocketed or cards even sold out. We made a selection of villagers that we would like to invite via amiibo to BK Isle. Maple was the first one – and spoiler alert: She wanted to stay.
And there you have it! A lot happened in my first 100 hours playing Animal Crossing New Horizons.
What are your highlights in ACNH so far? How many hours have you been playing already? Are you still playing or have you moved to the next game? Happy to learn more about this in the comment section! And please let me know if you are interested in a follow-up article covering my upcoming 100 hours in Animal Crossing New Horizons.
* Affiliate link: In case you haven’t bought Animal Crossing New Horizons yet or you are interested in any other Animal Crossing New Horizons items and you would like to support the blog, using my affiliate links for Amazon or PlayAsia would mean the world to me. Not to get rich, just to get the blog going. Thank you for your support!