Animal Crossing: New Horizons will finally be in our hands at the end of this week, and the reviews are now in.
Hopefully, you'll already have seen our very own review where we described the game as "a masterpiece that has been well worth waiting for", but what about everywhere else? How has the game been received by critics from all walks of life?
You'll be pleased to know that the game has received almost nothing but praise across the board. Let's take a look through what people have said:
The folks over at VGC awarded it a full 5/5, saying that it's a game "every Nintendo Switch owner should pick up".
New Horizons does more than enough to build on previous Animal Crossings and easily joins the list of software every Nintendo Switch owner should pick up. At a time when the world outside can often be quite scary, New Horizons is the comforting escape everyone needs.
Another full marks review comes flying in from God is a Geek, who say that this is everything long-term fans could hope for.
If you are looking forward to Animal Crossing: New Horizons as a long term fan, know that this is everything you could have hoped for, which is to say it’s more Animal Crossing with quality of life improvements on what might be the best console Nintendo’s ever put out. It’ll sell millions, earn new fans, and top play counts for years to come.
IGN awarded the game a 9/10, saying that it follows in the footsteps of Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey in successfully bringing its franchise to the next generation.
The Legend of Zelda, Pokemon, and Super Mario each found new life on the Nintendo Switch, and following those games in kind is Animal Crossing: New Horizons: An expanded, polished, next-generation reboot of a classic Nintendo game.
The Guardian says that now is the perfect time for a game like New Horizons.
Animal Crossing is everything I have been craving: it is gentle, soothing, social and creative, and my group chats are already buzzing with hype about beetles and villager fashions. If there was ever a perfect time for a game such as this, that time is now.
GamesRadar noted some "time-based frustrations", but otherwise came away impressed, awarding the game 4.5 out of 5.
This is an Animal Crossing game through and through, and although that comes with some time-based frustrations, that urge to just spend 'five more minutes' on your island deepens with every passing day.
USGamer also went for a 4.5/5 score, noting that New Leaf "remains the pinnacle of the series".
Animal Crossing: New Leaf remains the pinnacle of the series, but New Horizons brings with it a bunch welcome quality of life changes, such as terraforming the island to your every whim. The addition of crafting isn't a burden as I worried it would be. In fact, it becomes a fun objective to work toward, effectively diversifying the usual chores of selling bugs and fish to pay your never-waning debts to that rascally raccoon.
Eurogamer described it as Animal Crossing's "finest outing to date".
Animal Crossing: New Horizons [is] probably the best this series has ever had to offer and therefore one of Nintendo's very best games to date. It presents a world absurd in its mundanity yet shot through with magic, offering an escapism that's reassuringly dependable.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons launches on 20th March and is available to buy either digitally from the Switch eShop, or in lovely physical form.
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Nook will be extorting us you mean, with loanshark rates.
Can it just be March 20th already?
All these review summaries really do for me is reinforce the idea that this is not much more than the same before but in HD. The crafting seems essentially the only significant evolution to gameplay.
I need Friday to be here.
@gcunit i feel the same. I really want to buy this game but feel like i will soon get bored of it like i did the last (and only) AC game ive owned. I found the pace of it slow, which i can handle but its the things to do in between i need in plenty. I dare say i will get it, feel exactly the same as i imagine i will feel, wonder why i didnt just not get it and then trade it in.
Really? Cherry picking a few good words from favourable reviews?
What is the point of this? I good as in praising AC, not, good as in answering the questions want all Switch games reviews to answer.
"Alex says the game is good, go get it"
That's all we need to know. Alex's impressions video did this really well.
Seems many outlets are afraid to award full marks. Especially IGN. I used to trust them ~10 - 15 years ago. No more
@konbinilife IGN is probably the worst presence in video games media. Their news is terrible, their reviews are useless, and their forums are dead and controlled by authoritarians. They seem to exist purely off of how long they have been around and nobody seems to take them seriously anymore.
@the8thark The point is that there aren't any non-favourable reviews. The quotes you see above are all taken from each outlet's concluding summary, regardless of whether or not the comment was positive or negative.
@konbinilife Be fair. If you love Animal Crossing, maybe it's a 10/10 game. But if you've never played AC before... some reviews are going to want to offer more balance than the Nintendo Life review does.
ya know, with all this pandemic stuff, Nintendo should just release it early. I mean, all the retailers already have it in their stockrooms.
Shocked IGN gave it a 9 out of 10.
Shocked. No, not shocked but not shocked, actually shocked, that this got over a 6, maybe a 7, from IGN.
For a game I've had absolutely no interest in the past decade or so I can't believe I now not only want it but can't wait.
Amazing what a pandemic can do to one's gaming perspective.
Game informer also gave it 9/10
@gcunit but you could use that logic to never rate any game 10/10. Some people may not enjoy puzzle games, but Tetris is one of the greatest games of all time. Some people may only enjoy sports games, but does that take anything away from Breath of the Wild. Obviously I haven't played New Horizons yet, but it's likely the best game this particular genre has ever had.
@agrazioli I think releasing a few days early would earn Nintendo a lot of kudos with those of us under lockdown right now.
@rjejr I was incredibly shocked especially as the person who reviewed it for IGN I assumed would be really nit picking and hating of it.
I check my pre-download every day just to see if it somehow dropped early.... still no dice
Seriously though.... I can't think of a time I have been more excited for a release (other than maybe BoTW and the Switch overall together).
@JayJ Couldnt agree more. IGN is the click bait of the gaming world. Their pages - the few times I've been unfortunate enough to click - are borderline unreadable due to the volume of ads.
@JayJ haha I’ll never forget the Alien Isolation review they did many years ago, gave it a 6 I think...absolutely clueless
@gcunit Because every Animal Crossing before this one has allowed you to oversee house placement and alter the landscape of the island. I guess biases are hard to shake, even when the evidence is right in front of you.
Tempted to buy this, but I understand I will not be able to play this on both my switch and my Lite.
@gcunit well the same except you can quite literally change anything and everything having to do with the makeup of your island. If one lacks a creative mind and does not wish to evolve their island, I can see why it would be "the same but in HD".
@rjejr Animal Crossing New Leaf got a 9.6 from IGN, New Horizons getting a 9 isn't that surprising. Heck, the original Animal Crossing got a 9.1.
@jobvd why not?
theres probably no cloud saving but there is the save data tansfer
@codyf that means I can only transfer the data with both consoles near? That would really suck.
@personauser93 Terrain manipulation and house placement are pretty superficial. You're still doing the same stuff, you just get more control over the layout. The terrain shifting is a nice extra, but I don't view it as particularly significant.
@rjejr I hope you enjoy it! Never played it myself but I’m very curious. Hope you and your boys are safe and well.
I still can’t decide! I played one a long time ago and found it a bit boring. I also adored Stardew Valley!
Maybe they are that different?
I don't understand why US gamer thinks new leaf is the pinnacle when this game does everything that game did but more, but whatever I guess.
Yes not to mention the way you can alter your islands terrain, which to me is a massive evolution.
Time Travel is the key in ACNL.
You can speed up the game by change the date into tomorrow and must be done very carefully since you can make your villagers move out without your acknowledge.
Most peoples said you better follow the time flow to enjoy the game, but i don't think the same way. We should take control of the game, not the game take control us. By knowing how to use Time travel carefully, you can take control your time to leave the game safely without worrying of lost your villagers after long hiatus. That how do i enjoy ACNL and get addicted to have multiple cartridges to make multiple towns.
Now for ACNH, you can enjoy the game as you enjoy ACNL by manage your island into a village with very well builded houses and paths. You will find yourself spending 15 minutes to sell the fruits and possibly thinking about getting money from other source, another 15 minutes for finding and crafting the items to make furnitures, another 15 minutes for monitoring your villagers and interact with them, another 15 minutes for catching more bugs and fish. You will eventually spent your time quickly by keep busy to shape your island.
If you some questions about how to enjoy both ACNL and ACNH, you can ask to me. 😀
I'm sorry but how can New Leaf be the pinnacle of the series after this? This game is the same basic formula with a bunch of stuff added onto it, which is essentially what new Leaf was.
@AmplifyMJ That you MJKOP? I think you change your name as much as I change my avatar. 😂
Yeah we're good, kids home from school until well who knows. They don't really have any interest in AC but I still have some Labo vehicles that need building. I gave them today off to adjust to the new normal. Hang tight over there, keep everyone safe.
@FragRed I guess they're just happy you spend most of your time on the island, not on the water. 😎
@AnnoyingFrenzy Wow really? They must have 1 reviewer over their who's an AC fan. As much as I'm looking forward to the distraction it already has 1 point off for the voices. I also really like camera control but I wouldn't deduct a point for that. We'll see.
@rjejr Well actually, of the 5 main Animal Crossing games, they only repeated a reviewer once; having the same guy review Wild World and City Folk (which got an 8.8 and 7.5 respectively).
So, people are mad that the game is getting good reviews, people are mad certain news outlets are giving it high scores...yeah sounds like typical whiny gamers. "It's too simple of a game to get a 9!" "I don't like AC how can this game ever deserve more than 6?!"
@gcunit changing the land itself is a pretty big deal.
@jobvd thats the only way to do it i guess. Which is dumb right?
@rjejr got it in one, it’s me 😂 Schools are still operating here, off tomorrow for St. Patrick’s Day and they have informed us today they will also close on Wednesday for a ‘Staff Development Day’. They have however said that if people choose not to send their kids they will respect that, but until further notice school is on. I’m not sure what to do, my daughter knows that school being closed would be a big decision that would reflect the gravity of the situation, so she’s actually afraid of it coming to that. So I think I want them to be there as long as possible and keep things as normal as possible...
@Jayvir I appreciate some people will think that way, so it's great for them, but I've not seen or read enough new stuff about the AI of the NPCs and the depth of interaction you can have with them, or extensions of the activities you can undertake with them, to get carried away with New Horizons.
I can see why those who think New Leaf was a 10/10 game, New Horizons would be a 10/10 game, but if you're like me and find New Leaf more of a 7.5/10 game, then what I've seen of New Horizons it would only be an 8/10 - some notable differences, but not enough to elevate into where I think the IP could be with more attention to the type of things I've mentioned.
I haven't watched any videos or read any reviews. Just figured I would do something different than usual and NOT find out nearly everything about the game before it launches.
I found the “not at good as New Leaf” implication a bit strange as well. Here’s the review, for reference.
It seems that in the reviewer’s eyes the relative drawbacks were the amount of time it takes to get things going (including how long it takes for the music to kick it), as well as the fact that the terraforming makes things so malleable it removes the sense of your town as this reassuringly fixed entity you grow up in. While I somewhat understand the sentiment, being having powerful customisation tools doesn’t seem too much of a drawback in a series that desperately needed a new hook to stay fresh.
It does seem a peculiar point to end on. I understand that because a game being more fully featured doesn’t mean you have more fun with it, but it’s hard to argue New Leaf does anything much that Horizons doesn’t. My personal pinnacle of the series is Wild World, which I sunk hundreds of hours into, but I’d be hard-pressed to justify it being better than New Leaf so I probably wouldn’t include such a statement in a review.
Anyway, people are people, and opinions and tastes vary, especially on finer points. The nice thing is that nearly everyone basically seems to be having fun with this game.
Due to having to be isolated in self quarantine, would love for the big N to just release the game early!
@AnnoyingFrenzy IGN got rid of their decimal rating system so it’s now just a solid number. This could be anywhere from a 9-9.9 in the past.
I need this game so so badly. I don't want to wait until Friday!
Couldn't find any thorough video on YT where they show ALL the customization options for the male character(such as hair, eyes, etc.)anyone knows where I can find that info???
@gcunit You forgot to mention: the Terraforming; the Nook Miles reward system; the many quality of life improvements to decorating your home (UX and UI); the ability to decorate freely outside; the ability to move buildings; the ability to customize most furniture; the 8-player online...?
@jobvd I believe you would just have to develop separate islands between your console/handheld, just have to switch the gamecart out. I don’t think you need two copies of the game, but I could be wrong...
I cannot believe how divisive AC has become.
I get through all the articles re: smash bros and Mario kart, neither of which interest me, without feeling the need to insult and berate those who love them. The threads today regarding ACNL are bad: name calling, insults such we who do like it are living unorganized lives and wasting our time so we are sad. As if all video games aren't technically a waste of time. A lot of superior beings making judgements.
I remember when NL was fun. Seems like a long time ago.
Welcome to the dark side: we have cookies!
My main question is:
Can I on my Switch, have a house on my friend's island (their Switch), and can we upgrade the island together?
So if my daughter and I both want to create islands and play (not at the same time), we need two copies of the game and two consoles?!? Wow! And it still get's a perfect 10?
Count me out though. I don't care about Nintendo's justification for why it's gimped like this, it just doesn't make for an enjoyable proposition for me and my family. For others it will be different, and I hope you love the game.
@Antraxx777 but I would like to continue on the same island with the progress I would have made....
@k8sMum Dark side, I thought AC was the light side?
Always down for a cookie though.
And yeah, this place did used to be fun, but that was years ago. Years and years. Maybe the next Direct - not the 1 today I skipped - will cheer things up a bit.
That's just a clever facade. All powerful dictator/indentured servant, loan shark with a monopoly on services, critters stalking your very move, giving "gifts" to curry favour...only thing missing is the horse's head in your cot!
Well, I may be exaggerating a tad. Seriously, I'm hoping you can get into the game and enjoy it. Let it take you where it takes you.
@AmplifyMJ Things are changing fast all over. Our school went from being open, to being closed for 1 day, Monday so they could clean, to being closed for 2 weeks, in basically a matter of hours. I'm not really expecting them to open again until the fall when the next school year starts but hoping by May.
NYC, about 30 miles form me, is even nuttier, the mayor woudln't close the schools, the teachers union was freaking out, the governor wanted to close stuff, the Mayor was declaring it 'war" on national TV but still wouldn't close the schools. He finally closed the schools, until May I think. Then he wanted to close everything, and the governor was like no way, and the business owners are freaking out.
You like Dylan? Life is now a Dylan song. All the Dylan songs rolled into 1. We're all living on Highway 61.
@rjejr school closed for St. Patrick’s Day, then took an extra day today... yesterday they announced the school would close the rest of this week and our government has literally, as I write this, officially shut schools for the foreseeable future, and they anticipate it being beyond the Summer holidays... my daughter is crying beside me here. Yeah I love Dylan, because of my Dad. Take care sir
@AmplifyMJ Sorry about your daughter, tough times for the little ones. Is she getting Animal Crossing soon, I think that game would cheer anyone up. I certainly hope it cheers me up. Hang in there.
It's the same here in western NY. They had a 'superintendents ' meeting last Friday so no school, classes Monday then parents had to go yesterday to pick up tablets for home use.
I don't know if I can survive this. Nothing of truth coming from the WH. Misinformation all over the place. Revisionist history spewed constantly. Unprepared country that should have known better, that DID know better.
I'm on my own now. My anxiety disorder is ramping up. I'm not scared as much as totally, totally discouraged.
Ah well, AC is coming soon. If the servers can handle it, heheh.
@k8sMum Have you been in western NY the past few years, in my head you were more west? Not west coast west, OH, IL, IN.
My kid may be west, Alfred State College. Or less west more north at RIT. We were planning on doing come college campus visits this month and next, but well you know. I don't think I've had time for anxiety, too busy trying to deal w/ the reality of picking a college when they're all closed. But pick one he will.
Hang in there. And as my wife tells me constantly, turn off the news. Just checked and Best Buy says they are getting my game ready, still due Friday, and I just got a 7 day trial code on MyRewards so I can give it a go. Not sure about paying for online, we'll see.
NY born and bred. I'm now on the western edge of the Fingerlakes. When Bill was with IBM, which really means I've Been Moved, we were in Binghamton, then VT when Bernie was mayor of Burlington then in Poughkeepsie. My mom was from Rye.
We were in Piitsburgh when Cait got sick. I always come back to the Fingerlakes. I know NY has problems, but I love it here. Yeah, we get pummeled in winter from both Ontario and Erie but the other seasons are lovely.
I don't make time for anxiety but it makes time for me. Your wife is right about shutting off the news. I'm trying. Life/news is like a car wreck right now: you don't want to look but can't not.
I hope you get your game on time. I got mine digitally and got the update loaded last nite. Keep calm and carry on time. AC will help.
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