Animal Crossing: New Horizons (2020) Game Review

Animal crossing

by Luke.R

Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the 5th main entry in the popular Life Simulation game series developed by Nintendo. Animal Crossing is rated G, exclusive to the Nintendo Switch, and takes up 6.8 GB.

Unlike previous Animal Crossing games setting you up in a town that’s seen better days, leaving you too fix it up. Animal Crossing: New Horizons sets you up on a deserted island with 2 other brave villagers ready to conquer the wild and set up a new community from nothing but the surrounding nature and the help of the real-estate loving Tanuki, Tom Nook, who roped you into this new business venture, once again accompanied by his 2 nephews Timmy and Tommy.

Soon after setting up camp on the unexplored island you are awarded the honor of being Resident Representative, and put in charge of helping Tom fund, gather materials and build a new community from the ground up.


Animal Crossing is no stranger to slow beginnings but, New Horizons is even slower. From the outset, your given the chance to customize your villager like never before. Now you can create your own villager with a size-able amount of preset hair, eyes, nose and mouth, and of course your gender. With even more options unlocked throughout your playthrough.

After creating your villager, your able to pick one of four different randomized island options to move to, you’ll also have to pick your region/ time-zone, as New Horizons runs on Real-time. Meaning your island with have the same time/seasons as your region, helping the game calculate how long structures and some tasks should take to complete.

Once you’ve picked your island/region, Tom and his nephews will set you up with only a couple of essentials (tent, bed, lantern and radio), he’ll also set up a Resident Services tent, fit with a store and a crafting bench. Tom will also set up and airport allowing you to visit other players islands and randomly generated island for materials not native to yours.

Other than that, its up to you to gather materials and Bells (the in-game currency) to pay-off loans, build new stores and decorate the island and your villager all to your liking, and inevitably, inviting new residents to your island. Tom has also introduced a new form of currency “Nook Miles”, you’ll accumulate these by performing certain tasks (catching certain fish/bugs, gathering materials etc.) or for reaching milestones (getting new buildings and villagers, learning new skills, or doing well in a certain activity)

From the get-go you’ll have a noticeably restricted amount of activities and island but, through chopping down trees, smashing rocks, picking weeds and catching the massive list bugs and fish to trade in for bells or to help with your DIY projects. You’ll expand your island and the tools at your disposal, while decorating to your hearts content with New Horizons large catalogue of items and plants to place.

New Horizons also offers local and online multiplayer options for up-to 8 players. Multiplayer, while initially sounding great, sadly isn’t as great as it could be. While visiting a friend’s island, all players are greatly restricted with certain tasks, items and customization options not being usable.

It could be fun in short bursts but, if you’re looking to spend a lot of time on other islands, your personal experience may be weakened.

Visuals/Sound And Performance

New Horizons is a gorgeous game with an amount of detail unlike any-other in the series.

Villagers, bugs/fish and the surrounding fauna are more colorful and detailed than ever. Leaves on trees individually sway in the wind, water flows and reflects beautifully, and the fish and bugs look just like there real-life counter parts. Villagers and shops are also livelier than ever with new smooth animations, lively homes and tons of charm.

New Horizons is the truly the most beautiful and inviting this series has ever been, and it’s made even better by its calmingly bubbly music.

New Horizons music is constantly changing to fit certain characters and moods, yet never loses the relaxing and charming tone the series is known for. New horizons also runs at a smooth, locked 30FPS. Making the game feel just as phenomenal as it looks and sounds.


Score: 9.5/10

Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the most polished, fun and addictingly charming game not only in the series, but also one of greatest games on Nintendo Switch. Although slower than previous titles and featuring a lack-luster multiplayer option. New Horizons is a wonderfully endearing title filled with hours of entertainment, I’d recommend for series veterans and newcomers.

Last updated: 02 April 2020