- Animal Crossing: New Horizons was a massive success and became the best-selling game in the franchise due to its perfect timing and satisfying gameplay loop.
- The success of New Horizons could lead to the development of a full-fledged sequel that further expands on the concept and introduces new mechanics.
- Nintendo should capitalize on the popularity of New Horizons and deliver another hit with New Horizons 2, potentially offering players more islands and greater freedom.
While the Animal Crossing franchise may have been going strong since 2001, there has yet to be a sequel within it. Instead of crafting fully-fledged sequels, Nintendo has chosen to take the series to brand-new locales and adopt whole new concepts with each entry. This has made for a varied and unique series where players constantly argue over which is better. However, that approach may have to change with the next Animal Crossing following Animal Crossing: New Horizons.
There is no news on when the next Animal Crossing will hit store shelves, and based on the franchise’s history, it will likely be a while before players are treated to that next chapter. But, when that next title finally comes around, it may come in the form of Animal Crossing‘s first fully-fledged sequel. Just like with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild before it, the success of Animal Crossing: New Horizons may change the franchise forever.
The Next Animal Crossing Could Have a Lot of Fun With an NPC New Horizons Skipped
Animal Crossing: New Horizons did a lot of things right, but it also left out a few fan-favorite NPCs, and hopefully the next game can fix that.
Animal Crossing New Horizons Feels Like the Perfect Template
New Horizons Was Unlike Anything Animal Crossing Has Seen
While Animal Crossing has always been a popular series, nothing compares to the sheer success of New Horizons. The game came out at the perfect time, and as such, it quickly became the best-selling Animal Crossing of all time. The COVID-19 pandemic forced people to stay indoors, so with nothing else to turn to, millions got lost in the world of Animal Crossing. Not only did it serve as the perfect escape from the real world, but it was also used to host dozens of things including graduations, weddings, and even talk shows.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons benefited greatly from its release date, but it likely would not have been as successful if it was not for the extremely satisfying gameplay loop. This game took the franchise’s tried-and-true concept to new heights by introducing a plethora of new mechanics which gave players almost free rein to construct the village of their dreams. It was then further expanded upon with monthly updates and the exciting Happy Home Paradise DLC. All of this made for an experience that fans will not soon forget, and they may not have to.
Nintendo Could Do So Much With the New Horizons Concept
Animal Crossing: New Horizons did for Animal Crossing what Breath of the Wild did for The Legend of Zelda. Both titles took their franchise’s core concepts and completely reinvented them for the Nintendo Switch era. Because of that reinvention, both became massive sensations and are often regarded as the best in their respective franchises. Instead of moving on from that success, Nintendo greenlit a direct sequel in the form of Tears of the Kingdom, which also seemed to have paid off immensely. So, it only makes sense that it would do the same with New Horizons.
New Horizons not only brought in hardcore fans, but it also introduced the franchise to a whole new audience, as seen by the sales numbers. Instead of leaving that behind, Nintendo should go all in on the concept and deliver the first-ever full-fledged sequel. New Horizons 2 could further expand the franchise with even more new mechanics, far greater freedom, and maybe even give players more islands to play with. As long as it maintained the quality of the first one, it could be another massive hit for the studio.
It will likely be a while until the studio is ready to shed some light on the next chapter of Animal Crossing. But because New Horizons was so big, it would make complete sense to stick with that title rather than continuing the anthology nature of the past. While there is a strong chance that this success will not alter the studio’s approach, New Horizons 2 just sounds like too easy of a win to be ignored.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the fifth major game in the Animal Crossing series. This slice-of-life simulation game tasks the player with developing an abandoned island into a small town for its resident villagers. The game was released at the start of worldwide lockdowns amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which catapulted it into massive success. It’s currently the best selling game of all time in Japan.
- March 20, 2020
- Nintendo EPD
- Online Multiplayer , Local Multiplayer
- E for Everyone: Comic Mischief
- Animal Crossing: New Horizons — Happy Home Paradise
- How Long To Beat
- 61 Hours