News Article

Don't Expect Retro Games to Play in New Animal Crossing Releases

Posted by Tim Latshaw

Now go virtually play outside!

Back in the days of the GameCube Animal Crossing, when friends swapped memory cards and Tom Nook in a sweater vest was only a vague wisp that haunted the edges of our dreams and/or nightmares, players could find virtual NES consoles that contained emulated classics such as Pinball and Balloon Fight.

Since then, however, these 8-bit diversions have not appeared in subsequent Animal Crossing titles. Animal Crossing: New Leaf is no exception, and as Animal Crossing producer Katsuya Eguchi has told Kotaku in an interview, adding classic games would undermine Nintendo’s method of distributing them through the Virtual Console:

At the time, we didn't have a Virtual Console system. We thought that playing games inside of a game is kind of funny, and we wanted to do it. But now there's a Virtual Console where you can play classic games, so we don't think we will be doing that in future titles.

There are pros and cons to this decision on both sides. It’s hard to argue with free included games, of course, but the Virtual Console comes with the added benefits of easier access and save states. It should also be said that the Animal Crossing games stand up well on their own, and playing a game about a virtual life only to spend that life playing virtual games does have a bit of a hollow ring to it.

How do you feel about not having emulated games in New Leaf? Do you miss them from the original, or is it no big deal? Let us know below.


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User Comments (59)



Beta said:

Well, it would've been nice, but... yeah. It won't kill the experience for me X3 Not a crucial point, really.



CanisWolfred said:

VC makes it redundant anyways. A PS Home-like Arcade would've been nice, but not essential.



bezerker99 said:

How about having a VC arcade room w/in Animal Crossing? The game could read your hard drive and give u access to the games you have. Or, they could be unlockable to make it even more fun!



yojo said:

I miss them. I played a lot of Excitebike, even though that game was sold in every format that Nintendo had in the early 2000's



Geonjaha said:

It's a smart decision. Animal Crossing games are fun enough to stand alone without needing NES games on top of them. The games are all available on the VC if you want them anyway - no point in Nintendo adding inferior versions to other games.



Gold_Ranger said:

Don't really care, I didn't play them all that often anyway and I unlocked them all!
Though, what they could've done was make a "fake" game and "fake" system...
Something that the Characters in Animal Crossing would buy and play in the spirit of Animal Crossing.

This isn't coming out right...I know what I'm thinking, it's just hard to put actual words to it...



sinalefa said:

Why would you give them as gifts when you can sell them? Still cannot complain since AC games have tons of content and last forever. I would rather have new tailor made games (kinda like No More Heroes 2 did) but then again that is not the point of AC



TwilightV said:

I agree with berzerker 99. Being able to play select VC games directly from the game would be fun. The best part of the original AC was collecting all those games.



GamecubeMan said:

Typical, but who really expects retro games to show up in New Leaf with the Virtual Console service being a reality today.



Smitherenez said:

@Kaine_Morrison You mean like an imaginary game system within Animal Crossing? That could be a funny idea! You get into a store and see a 'odnetnin' system. You can play a game on it like 'Tree Shaker Deluxe'.



RupeeClock said:

Of course they're not going to bundle several free NES games when they could sell them individually for a couple of bucks, ya know?
No objections though, but it could've been amazing if a single SNES game was available in New Leaf.



ungibbed said:

Why not use the bell currency system for a in game purchase of select games. I know the idea sounds neat but on the other hand, be exploited if it were.

That being said, I had hours of joy playing the original Legend Of Zelda and Super Mario Bros. from the GameCube version years ago. Even having a message board for Wild World and sell turnips at a huge profit in the game and visit another to buy on the cheap.

There's always someone though who will take advantage of your generosity and as a return favor, chop every single tree down and anything else (calling it a joke) while you left your console running for those who just wanted to help each other make some cash.

That was the last time I left my old DS running.



Kirk said:

I can understand why they would avoid this now but it would still be cool if there were some kind of little games for play.

Maybe they could have old Game & Watch games or old arcade games they're not likely to put of Virtual Console or something.



Williaint said:

That was one of the great things about the original AC...
Having Game & Watch games wouldn't be so far fetched...



zeldagaymer93 said:

The only cool part about it was the fact that you could actually play "arcade" games in your virtual home. However, it's such a minor detail that it shouldn't really turn any fans away from the series.



hYdeks said:

the way you guys worded the article, I though it had something to do with Retro Studios in Animal Crossing, how silly of me As for the Retro GAMES, I could careless, I play it for the Animal Crossing.



SonataAndante said:

To echo some sentiments, it would be neat if you could just acquire as an item an NES and a GameBoy that you can toss on a table and access your VC games that way. There would be little point to it besides novelty of course. At the very least I just want an NES furniture item even if it doesn't do anything. Maybe there's one in New Leaf? I'll find out eventually I suppose.



3Daniel said:

i just want to be able to pay bells to an ingame character who will pull all the weeds when i get behind. tis why i gave up on wild world. anyone know what the weeds situation is in new leaf?



idork99 said:

Solution: Go to your tent, pretend you have an NES connected to a TV in there, save and end your game, press the HOME button, pick an NES classic from the Virtual Console list, and voilà! Once you've enjoyed playing your classic game, just push the HOME button, select AC:NL, choose your file, and your back to your real virtual world! Lol!



StarDust4Ever said:

At least they're not giving you 40 second demos like in Super Smash Brothers Brawl. That was super annoying, IMO.



Emaan said:

It was a fun addition to the original, but I can understand it not being included now. I'm at least glad they brought the island back in this one, something that was missing in the games following the original.



Objection said:

But without NES titles secreted away, where will we go for fun gameplay in Animal Crossing?
Jk, just not been my thing since a year after the original...



Stark_Nebula said:

Does this mean that Animal Crossing will never be put on a GC VC? Or will they have to alter the game if they do so? That's an interesting question if you ask me.



GamerZack87 said:

Here's a solution: create new games to include in an Animal Crossing title! Nintendo wouldn't lose revenue from poor VC sales, so everybody wins!



SteveW said:

The emulated games were the main thing that kept me playing Animal Crossing...



Tender_Cutlet said:

Remember the first time playing Shenmue you went into the Arcade and actually found yourself playing Hang On or Space Harrier!? and I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks the best bits of every Warioware title are the 10-voltz classics, by a furlong.



Taya said:

In the Gamecube AC, I enjoyed collecting the NES games more than actually playing them. And on April Fools Day Tortimor gives you a fake NES game. It was a good trick.

They were a nice addition but we don't need them now.



Wii_Win said:

@hydeks Same here! I thought, "Oh, retro studios games aren't gonna be in it. Wait, what old games did retro make? o.0"



RevolverLink said:

Yeah, I think most people already understand and accept that the return of playable NES games in Animal Crossing is unlikely to ever happen. Jonathan Holmes from Destructoid brought up an alternative earlier today that I really liked though (even if it is just as unlikely): playable fake-NES games.

Just the thought of basically having Retro Game Challenge-style "retro" titles incorporated into Animal Crossing had me salivating.



Zombie_Barioth said:

Doesn't really bother me at all since they haven't been included since the first game anyway. It would have been nice if they put demo versions in like they did with SSBB though, or put them in as just another type of decoration.



PK_Wonder said:

I don't understand why this is such a big deal to people. Animal Crossing basically had a limited (and novel) Virtual Console simulation before the VC ever existed. Now it does, so don't expect it back. There is so much more than there ever was in the GameCube version to do in Animal Crossing: New Leaf that NES games don't even cross my mind. Besides, the Nintendo fortune cookie items are infinitely better.



Azikira said:

I would go for a more custom approach, making some 8-bit style Arcade games just for the game! You could even use your collected Play Coins as tokens for the game!!



SethNintendo said:

Care to share those or gift Super Mario Bros and LoZ to others? I haven't spotted a code for either game on the internet for AC:GC. I know Punch-out!! is on the AC (GC version) which is a rare title. To my knowledge they were going to release Super Mario Bros and LoZ on AC but never did due to releasing the games onto GBA for $20 each. Did you get the games through ereader (AC had a ton of ereader cards)? I still have the ereader and it was a "cool" idea at the time even though you had to scan multiple cards. The games were only about 5 dollars on ereader while they released the other classic NES Nintendo games on GBA for ~$20.



ungibbed said:

Can't any longer. I gave the game to my younger brother. Don't have any AC game right now.



Darknyht said:

That was the whole reason I bought a Cheat Code disc back in the GameCube days. It allowed me to unlock all the Virtual NES games in Animal Crossing (including the hidden ones).



Captain_Gonru said:

@bezerker99 Agreed. Further, you could allow visitors to play them, effectively giving them a demo that they may choose to buy later. It could make use of the in-game TV, too. Not as the screen, of course, but as an access point.



Captain_Gonru said:

@SethNintendo The e-reader was a cool, though clunky, idea. I'd like to see them revisit the idea with the NFC on the Wii U. You could put SMB in a Mario figure, then have access to the game. AR cards were supposed to do that for the 3DS, but that hasn't been used enough.



DarkKirby said:

Agree with the decision? No. Understand? Yes. I wouldn't have used the feature anyway but It's just Nintendo trying to make more money.



SethNintendo said:

Funny that classic NES games on ereader were about 5-6 dollars (for the cards to scan to play the NES game). Ereader obviously didn't become much of a hit but I believe Nintendo killed it sooner than it should have due to realizing people were willing to pay $20 per NES classic on a GBA cartridge. While you had to invest 20-30 for the ereader (believe it was more close to 30 when it came out) the NES games were a 1/4 or so of the cost of the GBA NES classics. I mainly bought the ereader for the GC Animal Crossing cards. Some cards had cool Nintendo patterns for Able Sisters, clothes, furniture, etc.. Plus I used to collect sports card when I was younger (sometimes still buy rookie singles or past players I used to like a lot) so the whole ereader card thing was more appealing to me than most people. The multiple card swipes was a little pain though but not unbearable. It is a shame they couldn't get it down to two or so swipes instead of 5-8 or whatever it was to load a game.



DarkEdi said:

An interesting thing could be to buy to Tom Nook the VC games you find in the VC and to play them inside Animal Crossing and in your Wii (U) like normally you do.



Lobster said:

Oh, THAT'S how I got all my NES games in the GC Animal Crossing! The eReader! I had totally forgotten. I used to love those cards, I bought TONS. I still have most somewhere I'm sure. I had just completely forgotten until this moment that the NES games were stored on about five or six cards that you had to scan in a certain order.

Ah, memories!

As for whether I'm sad that there are no retro Easter egg games in this version of Animal Crossing: not particularly. I have the whole eShop full of games right there, and most games don't cost any more than a single pack of those cards did.

I can't believe it's been over a decade since the original game came out. I played it for about two years!



MeloMan said:

I think simple, original, NES "inspired" videogames to play inside of Animal Crossing would at least give something new, retro, and simple without undermining the VC games, but, eh....




@MeloMan like this make a game which would be like old games but not they could do simlpe games like game and watch type of game or driving games where you just move left or right to miss other cars just to get high scores and when friend come to your town they could try and get better scores

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