These 5 Things Would Make Animal Crossing So Much Better
I've been playing since the end of July!
Let me preface this with 3 critical points:
- I am a huge fan of The Sims and have played the game since I was 18 years old. (I'm 33)
- Animal Crossing fascinated me so much that I bought the limited edition ACNH handset before ever playing it for the first time. (No regrets!)
- I enjoy Animal Crossing, but it has fewer features than The Sims 4 and costs way more.
Now that we have that out of the way, let me just say that my mom, my bestie, and I are obsessed with Animal Crossing. We have all played both games and can admit that there are some things Animal Crossing does better than The Sims.
Even so, there is massive room for growth and improvement.
My mom, who is even more obsessed with the game than I am, described it as a budget version of The Sims. When I laughed and told her the price of the game, her eyes bulged out of her head. She only plays on my console and never knew the cost until then.
These are the top 10 things that would make me feel better about paying twice as much for Animal Crossing as The Sims 4. Keep in mind that I've only been playing for about a month.
1. Let Us Choose the Neighbors We Want
I got Tammy and Buck when I started, and I dislike both of them. Getting two random characters was terrible enough but struggling to get rid of them is even worse. We buy the game to enjoy it. I genuinely have no interest in building character by having two neighbors I want nothing to do with.
Tammy is the worse of the two. She speaks in Ebonics and uses it entirely out of context. She says "ya heard" after everything, including in sentences where it makes no logical sense.
In The Sims, I go to town mode, kick them out, and can move another saved set of characters into the house. Animal Crossing should have given us at least three or four neighbors to choose from at the start. Then, we can seek out and invite the rest.
2. Give Us More Hairstyle Choices for Curly and Kinky Hair
Despite having to listen to Tammy spew off-beat Ebonics at me 24/7, Animal Crossing doesn't have enough hairstyles that are culturally representative of Black people. I have bought all the available ones.
I have seen no braids or 'fros, and the dreads are short and spiky. My mom thought my avatar was a boy when she first started playing.
I have long dreads in real life and would have liked a matching avatar. All the long-haired styles are for straight and wavy hair. If the game were just Eurocentric, that would be one thing. But sticking me on an island with Tammy from the 'hood and then giving me one Black hairstyle irks my soul.
UPDATE Sept. 12. 2022: I finally got access to more kinky hairstyles. It's plain wrong that Black people have to pour hours into the game to level up to get characters that look even remotely like us while everyone else gets their basic hairstyles at the start.
3. Provide Varying Landscapes Choices
Animal Crossing has been around for way too long to have only forested islands to occupy. When I played The Sims, I almost always chose desert towns ― long before I ever visited one in real life.
Fast-forward to my 30s: I live and travel full-time in the desert. So, I know deserts can be islands and have beaches too. I'm on the beach in the Mexican desert right now!
Animal Crossing could work just as well with desert landscapes as with forested ones. We could harvest grapes, almonds, lemons, dates, cabbages, and tomatoes. Instead of plucking weeds, we could pick up cactus thorns or uproot cacti.
4. Facilitate More Interactions With Objects
Most objects in Animal Crossing are just for show. Your fridge doesn't have food, and you can't ride your bike. Sometimes you can play musical instruments or open and close things, but there's not much beyond that.
The related benefit of this for Animal Crossing is that we don't need to be concerned with sleeping or eating. However, I'd like to be able to use the items in my house.
Consequently, I kept my little hut longer than most people. What's the point of expanding it and putting more stuff in it that I can't use?
5. Allow Visits To Bestie Islands, Even When They're Offline
Whenever I want to visit my best friend's island, I have to wait for our schedules to align so that she can get online. So far, this has only happened once.
I get that there is some concern people could show up and ruin your island, but that's an easy fix. Only allow unrestricted travel to islands where people are in-game besties.
It would be even better if we could set further restrictions on what besties can do when they arrive without supervision. For example, maybe besties can harvest fruits and veggies, but they can't dig anything up. Maybe they can visit businesses and chat with neighbors, but they can't gather anything.
The Bottom Line
I haven't played The Sims in at least half a year because I mainly use Chromebooks and own the Nintendo console. That makes Animal Crossing the logical alternative. However, with a $60 price tag versus $30 for The Sims base game, I think ACNH could bring much more to the table than it currently does.
Do you play Animal Crossing? Add me: SW-0334–1749–0702! Also, if you know some hacks to solve some of my complaints, I'm all ears!
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