9.5

Animal Crossing is an unusual, but very good game.

The Good: Very unique premise; strangely addictive gameplay; complete and total freedom; lots and lots of things to do; soundtrack is really catchy.

The Bad: Graphics are clean and cute, but dated; many will be turned off by the totally laid-back approach; picking weeds is annoying; typing is a bear.

Animal Crossing is a laid-back game that will definitely not appeal to everybody. The only twist is, there's only one way to know whether it will or not: you must play it. You may just find that there is something here you'd never expect from a video game, and that is a deep level of immersion and enjoyment from such a simple and indescribably addictive game.

At first glance, it doesn't seem like anything would be fun about Animal Crossing. Pay off and furnish your house? Design clothing? Go fishing and bug hunting? Talk to and write letters to your neighbors? Plant trees and flowers and pick weeds? Sure, it doesn't sound like a whole lot of fun, but surprisingly, it really is. The sheer simplicity and laid-back attitude of Animal Crossing is what makes it so enjoyable.

There is nothing required of you in Animal Crossing. You can do any of a million different aforementioned activites and things, or you can choose not to. It's completely up to you, as the player. Do you wish to upgrade your home, or deck out what you already have? That's completely up to you, and there's no way to pass the game either. It goes on forever, if you want it to.

The atmosphere is one of the best parts of Animal Crossing. To be sure, the graphics are awfully basic, but there's a charm and smooth quality to them, and they definitely get the job done. The soundtrack is awfully relaxing and catchy, especially the rain theme.

There's just so much to do in Animal Crossing, and there are no demands made on you. It's a slick and clean game, and perfect to recommend to anyone who's willing to try something different.

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