News Article

Phil Fish: Animal Crossing: New Leaf Not Having Microtransactions is "So Special And Precious"

Posted by Andy Green

Believes Nintendo is showing 'amazing restraint'

Animal Crossing: New Leaf is currently taking the world by storm with players from all over collecting fossils, catching fish, chasing bugs and selling turnips to their heart's content.

It seems Phil Fish, the developer behind the popular title Fez, is also enjoying the game and he has taken to Twitter to let the world know how "cute and quaint" it is.

He also gave Nintendo some praise for not implementing a microtransaction business model for the popular title considering how the elements of the game lend themselves to one.

Microtransactions are something Nintendo is looking into at the moment and the company revealed Steel Diver will be its first entry into the free-to-play arena. The game, which was a 3DS launch title, is set to emerge before March 2014 but there's been no news on which system it will appear on.

What are your thoughts on microtransactions being implementing in future Animal Crossing titles? Let us know in the comment section below.


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User Comments (79)



KeeperBvK said:

He's 100% right on this one. Too many potentially good games are completely ruined by offering micro-transactions, be they optional or not.



Jellitoe said:

Micro transactions break games and make it feel like you bought just a piece of the game and will not own the whole game till you fork over more money.
Bad for gamers.



Midnight3DS said:

I'd like to see DLC packs for this. Maybe 2 to 5 dollar packs that add lots of new items and such randomly over time. Even new wildlife, new buildings, new sets of collectables to gather, etc.



Einherjar said:

AC would be the perfect gold mine for companies like EA and sorts. The possibillities are endless and i can absolutely see them charging the player 1$+ for a shirt. And im absolutely thankfull that nintendo doesnt rip off its fans like that.
On the other hand, id also welcome a well made DLC pack and would even pay moderate amounts of money for it.
Like @Midnight3DS said, expanded creature books, new sets of furniture, gadgets or even shops to give the game even more longlivety than it already has. But it has to come rather late in its lifetime, to give it "new leafs"
But to be honest, its far from necessary. AC-NL is a rare exampel of a game, that feels complete like it is and its not afraid to tell you that what you have there IS the complete package.



Shworange said:

Well said Phil. The fact that the game was built to be massive from the start is fantastic. There is a lot of money you could pay for DLC, but how would that be handled? Part of the charm of the game is gifting and trading items to friends. If you buy DLC, and a friend didn't, would that player not be allowed to pick up the DLC item? This game is better for not facilitating paid DLC.



Peach64 said:

Hopefully this shows people he's just a gamer that tells it how he sees it (he got so much abuse in these comments for criticising Nintendo in the past, but a lot of people that grew up loving Nintendo have legitimate reasons to criticise them right now)



Mk_II said:

Hear hear! I never agree with Mr. Fish but he's absolutely right on this one.



SteveW said:

Nintendo doing a free to play IAP game is a very sad thing (Steel Diver), the last true major game company in the world is sinking to those levels... I supposed a submarine game is a proper game for it.



Bragoon said:

While I agree with him, pretty much anything Phil Fish says seems like sucking up at this point. He'll have to bring Fez or another game to a Nintendo system before I care what he has to say.



CrazyOtto said:

Fish is right on this one. Micro-transactions are the reason why I quit Farmville before 2009 even ended (Farmville started in 2009) Sorry Zynga, I'm not paying $5 for a purple cow.



Yorumi said:

@Peach64 I think he gets a lot of abuse because he acts like a jerk and then also acts like he's suddenly the most relevant figure in gaming because he made one successful game. I'm not saying you have to be a MIyamoto to have an opinion or that anything he's said here is particularly wrong, it's just overall he could use a dose of humility.

AS for the topic, I'd be fine with dlc that adds new content, but microtransactions, absolutely not.



Great_Gonzalez said:

Don't like this guy but boy oh boy he's spot on here! I beg you nintendo do not make AC free to play or add microtransactions!



Rief said:

Well, there are Games where Micsrotransactions are ok and even worth their money.
AC isn't one of those.



jdarrell said:

It helps that they know a lot of people are already willing to pay $35 for it, and then become more willing to pay a premium price for other Nintendo games.



QBertFarnsworth said:

If they charged for microtransactions for Animal Crossing, the game would cost $2,000 as it's primarily a game about microtransactions.



Haxonberik said:

I have to commend them too. Animal Crossing seems so prone to microtransactions, and they will probably kill the mood of the game if implemented



CrissCross87 said:

Animal Crossing was the one game series from Nintendo I would hope would get micro transactions. At least for actual extras... like the fortune cookie prizes. I would love to see various 3rd party franchises incorporated as such. It would be like Little Big Planet.



Philip_J_Reed said:

I actually saw a feature on another site that suggested Nintendo made a big mistake by NOT including microtransactions.

I feel dirty just typing that.



ricklongo said:

It's not restraint, it's business savvy. Microtransactions would probably net them more money right now, but it would destroy the game's atmosphere and leave a dent on Nintendo's carefully constructed relationship with its fan base. You can't put a price on that, and people just don't realise it (which is why some of them keep claiming that it would be in Nintendo's interest to become a third-party developerfor other consoles).

Iwata said a while ago that his tenure as president had him working towards goals 20 years in the future, and you can bet this decision is part of that.



snoox said:

Adding microtransactions to ACNL wud be equivalent to adding Satan into that world. It's perfect how it is now, pls N never add it!!!! D=



Emblem said:

@Philip_J_Reed I can see why from a profit point of view they that would say that. A few DLC packs and they will make alot of money as well as keep in gamers good books. Microtransactions could possibly kill the franchise and damage Nintendos reputation and profits in the long run.



steamhare said:

So, nobody is commenting about how he's phrasing this? That it's the most backhanded way to say this possible?



wober2 said:

slow news day? I kind of think it is crazy that his tweet can make a news post. Maybe he will bring fez to 3ds and then that would be something...



TheRegginator said:

Whoa, Phil Fish just said something sensible.

Positive things to come out Phil's mouth: 1
Negative things to come out Phil's mouth: too many to count



Philip_J_Reed said:

Oh certainly. There's no question they'd make money. But as you correctly imply, keeping the brand alive long-term is the far preferable path. New Leaf would be generating more money for them (at least potentially) if it included micro-transactions. But the brand as a whole would suffer for it, and people won't be as likely to buy a sequel if they remember this as "the game so greedy it sucked away all my money," rather than "the game so charming it sucked away all my time."



SkywardLink98 said:

"Microtransactions" aren't good, but normal DLC is. Often enough microtransactions don't offer anything worth money, but if they included normal DLC that'd be good, as they can't develop expansions for free.



Morpheel said:

"Isabelle: Do you wish to build this OLD STREET LAMP right now instead of using Bells and waiting 24 hours? Just pay me US$3.99"
"Tommy: You can buy more FORTUNE COOKIES a day by paying me US$0.99! Yes, yes!"
"Neighbour: Do you want a picture of me? It will only cost you US$1.99!"



Retro_on_theGo said:

I wonder how many hypocrites will agree with Phil Fish's comment just because it's positive towards Nintendo! :3

But yeah, it is nice of them. Hey, has this guy said anything about Fez on Wii U yet???



meltendo said:

I'll pay for things that are new and NOT IN the game. I hate the idea of paying to "unlock" stuff. I feel ripped-off and left out at the same time.



takyon98 said:

i think he's making fun of nintendo....

"it's amazing the restraint nintendo is showing."



GamerZack87 said:

I'm pleased that Nintendo is wise when it comes to paid DLC. By making the full game and then creating additional content after the game is released, it really feels like you have the complete package without requiring extras. Having said that, I'm in the mindset that Animal Crossing: New Leaf most definitely does not need, and is perfect without, paid DLC. The game is so huge that I've barely scratched the surface!

And this coming from a guy who is near-obsessed with Skylanders!

@takyon98: That's the exact impression I got from his tweet.



Tuurtledove said:

I remember when Nintendo began releasing the Golden furniture set for AC:CF in early 2011/2012. That's downloadable content done correctly, completely unannounced, completely free. Just a neat little surprise to wake up to one morning



AlbertoC said:

I like it. You have to actually play the game to get through it.

Nintendo didn't lend itself to the "pay us USD$0.99 to play less to unlock this cool virtual hat or to bribe this character into moving to town, and another almost-a-dolar-but-not-completely-so-that-tempting-zero-is-there-to-lure-you for some in-game currency so you can burn it and then return wanting more" like many mobile games (or even "games") or EA do.

And that's good because they have their head in making games, not money. And that's good because that gives Nintendo reputation and customers who swear allegiance to them by the experiences they offer instead of just ways to milk the most instant cash possible.

And that's amazing because Animal Crossing is about collecting stuff and enjoying the stay in your virtual village, not yet another selling platform when it could easily be one.

To many commenters above: You are confusing DLC, new content that it's not in the game and that you pay for and download from the internet to extend your experience, to microtransactions, which I explained in this comment. Or in EA's own words, "...the ability to pay for things along the way, either to get to a higher level to buy a new character, to buy a truck, a gun, whatever it might be." Monetize anything virtual.

Lastly, sorry for the eventual grammar mistake - please know that english is not my mother tongue.



puddinggirl said:

I agree wholeheartedly. This game won't be nearly as enjoyable with micro-transactions even if everything else is the same.



Magikarp3 said:

It really depends on the game. For Animal Crossing, I wouldn't mind microtransactions if the purchasable items were also obtainable by playing the game regularly as well. That way, people who want can fast-track to decking out their house by paying a little extra while the others don't feel left out. But if there were exclusive items or minigames for paying customers (and no feasible reason why those items couldn't be available to everyone), then it would be a nuisance.



Zodiak13 said:

... I really care about his opinion... Love the saracsm that was oozing from his comment. I'm impressed by my restarint at the moment as well...



JusticeColde said:

I don't like Phil Fish mainly because of his attitude when it comes to people talking about his game, but I agree that he is right about this.

Nintendo doesn't need microtransactions because they aren't big wigs in suits that only know money and nothing else.



takyon98 said:

also why would a indie dev care about micro transactions? im serious almost all the indie devs ive seen said they dont like micro transactions. Idk why he would be like this :U



RetroGBHippie92 said:

Umm..... didn't Phil Fish critisize the 3DS out during launch? Well he's certainly done some sort of 180 degree turn on his opinion on Nintendo, that's for sure.
I'm pretty sure he won't bring his Fez game to the Wii U or 3DS, but as long he's happy with just one of Nintendos games, then that's fine with me, but I still don't like the guy after whatever he said previously.



C7_ said:

I agree, but because he's Phil Fish and he used the words "special and precious" this doesn't at all feel like a compliment.

Wait why is he getting article space on this site? He has nothing to do with Nintendo, which he has repeatedly made abundantly clear.



Chunky_Droid said:

I wouldn't have minded the ability to load downloaded VC games from within Animal Crossing. That would both make it feel like the Gamecube version while allowing Nintendo to sell VC games from within Animal Crossing.



thatguyEZ said:

Phil Fish is a douche. Animal Crossing is awesome and I'm all for DLC if it's quality and the base game was shipped as a complete package and not only 90% completed and day one DLC is usually just bull. But i'd rather not see DLC anywhere near my animal crossing.



Beechbone said:

That's some change of heart from Fish after he trashed 3DS for his experience with Monster Hunter.



RedBeanPorridge said:

I can't help but feel like he's being sarcastic... >_>
But he's right though. It would be nice if more games in the future tried to stay away from microtransactions as much as possible. cough*streetpassmiiplaza*cough



Vincent294 said:

I know. Phil Fish is right on this. I could overlook big expansion packs for DLC if the game is already a good deal, but Nintendo went above & beyond to not implement Zynga-style microtransactions.



Trikeboy said:

To be fair, the game does have micro transactions, just not for real cash. They use coins generated by using the gyrometer built into the game. Walk your way to get new items in ACNL.



Pod said:

It's true, but I think more so than showing restraint, Nintendo is sticking with the gun that has gotten the job done for decades.

Add enough new ideas and value, and people will pay full price for your game.

If you have them paying full price, they shouldn't have to pay any more.

Sure, the game could have adopted a free-to-play model, but most would NOT spend the kind of money Nintendo charges for a boxed copy, so in the end I think they earn a LOT more the traditional way.



GiftedGimp said:

Its not restraint its business mentality, where as Most Western publishers treat thier games as potential cash cows, Nintendo don't.
Yes Nintendo games tend to get less dlc, but in return you usually more content on disc and when dlc is released by Nintendo it's usually worthwhile and good value.



Araknie said:

And they give you free furniture ever 15 days and if you don't like it you can sell it like anything else.
Love this game i am discovering something new every day still.



CargoSushiimira said:

I hope they put in DLCs in ACNL but not some normal t-shirts and furniture, no, Nintendo stuff, like having Peaches Castle, eatable food from there biggest titles, and some stuff from Kid Icarus, 'cause that's the best game ever!



Windy said:

Very Nice Phil **Claps** I'm glad Phil Noticed. It's nice when a Known Dev Praises another. Say what you want to about the guy. The guy is Brilliant. On Micro transactions I find myself skipping games which have Micro Transactions and buying the ones which don't do that sort of thing. I play alot of Android stuff and that's the first thing I look for when i'm downloading a game. There are some games you can pop 75.00 bucks into before you even know it. It seems a sneaky way to run things



tanookisuit said:

If they added microtransactions I'd be finished with Animal Crossing. It's so large as it is and opening that door is opening a door to very expensive exploitation like the $60 Tiger Woods Golf that really costs like 300 or more whatever that story was about a year ago since they include so little of the courses with it.

Nintendo is being Nintendo, they said they're working on it a bit but for the most part are not a fan and in particular not fans of pulling what many have with it hiding on disc already or putting out heaps after nickel and diming buyers to death and that's good for them. People shouldn't be so accepting of microtransactions as it's a movement when handled wrongly that moves towards the end of buying a quality game without paying more to get the game itself which is not right.



World said:

I agree with everyone who said it sounded like an insult. He could have called it twee and had it sound more sincere. He seems like a hipster. Hipsters like twee, right?
Microtransactions are kind of evil, I think. However, paid downloadable content (like packs of furniture and things, rather than just one item) might be the way to go if they ever decide to make a free-to-play Animal Crossing.
(But what am I saying? I'd never play this game. I want to. I love it in theory, but the ever-running in-game clock scares me somehow).



Daggo said:

Animal Crossing is how games should be, period.

Anyways, I don't know this person but still, seems like he's a douche. I'm sorry if that's not the case but the way that last bit reads...



Marioman64 said:

i'm sure this has been said repeatedly already, but Nintendo isn't showing restraint here by not using microtransactions, other companies are just silly moochers



Windy said:

OMG My wife is Hooked on Hay Day on Ipad. I just found out she spent 60.00 dollars playing it this month! SOMEBODY HELP ME! ****DESTROYS IPAD!**** This is what Micro-Transactions can lead too. On my wifes behalf it is the only game she plays but I sure hope she doesn't spend 720.00 this year on Hay Day Untitled

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