Animal Crossing in 2021
While 2020 has been a wild and stressful year for most of us, the world of Animal Crossing has been pretty stellar, growing and evolving over the course of the year and providing many of us with an escape and means to relax. I know I’ve found solace in building my island from the ground up and altering it as each update was released, transforming my home again and again in the ever-present quest to reach “perfection.” Yet, with the year ending, there are questions of what we should expect come 2021. Will Nintendo continue to give it the time and care it needs to grow? Let’s take a look at what we should be expecting come the new year.
Having recently done an interview with Polygon regarding Nintendo as a whole, Doug Bowser was able to answer a few enlightening questions regarding the future of Animal Crossing. First, he noted just how impactful the user-created content has been to the continued success of the game, noting that it’s done a lot to keep the game alive. To those of you dedicated to creating those pieces of content, congrats on the phenomenal shout-out from a pretty important member of Nintendo! And I have to agree with his assessment; without the passion and work of content creators, I don’t know if Animal Crossing would have done nearly as well. When asked about what to expect for the game come 2021, Bowser said that players should expect to continue to see regularly released content as they have this year. Updates will be provided by developers based on a variety of different things; seasons, events, mechanical updates, you name it. But what that translates to is that we’ll still see content trickling into the Animal Crossing world, though with what regularity we can’t be sure. Bowser again plugged the user-generated content, stating that their contributions will be a huge help in maintaining Animal Crossing in between each update.
So yes, we should be seeing more Animal Crossing everything come the new year, which is awesome to hear, but something about the way Bowser talks about user-created content concerns me. While he is very appreciative and goes out of his way to thank those who have been working hard at keeping the game alive, it can feel a little like Nintendo is leaning on its players for support to continue the game’s lifespan. Yes, we’ll see more official content, but how much? How regularly? To my mind, I imagine we’ll see fewer updates overall due to a lot of the holidays already being set in place for next year. Sure, there may be little changes or additional recipes for players to collect, but overall I don’t see many of those pieces of content changing drastically. This could also mean that each content could contain less overall content, as Nintendo may view it as needing less for those given seasons or holidays. In this way, users will be carrying the primary burden, which feels weird. We aren’t the developers after all, and while having these passion projects is fun, I wish Nintendo was stepping more up to the plate in this regard. Still, this is all speculation, and I may be getting ahead of myself. I’m just glad that we’ll be seeing more love for this lovely game come next year.
What Animal Crossing additions do you hope to see in 2021? Let me know your most anticipated updates down below!