Animal Crossing: City Folk Updated Hands-On

We venture into the big city to see what life is like on the other side.

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Nintendo's darling first-party franchise continues with Animal Crossing: City Folk, which will once again let you live a virtual life in a quiet, unusually green village among familiar furry friends. This time, the big city beckons, so instead of waiting for other people to come visit you, you can hop on a bus and mingle downtown. We had the opportunity at the E3 Media & Business Summit to get a tour of the new Animal Crossing, but at the Nintendo Media Summit in San Francisco, we were able to see firsthand what the city was like for the very first time.

Hop on the bus and head to the city!

Animal Crossing is known for its charming presentation and addictive open-ended gameplay. It's easy to dump dozens and even hundreds of hours into your own virtual world, and City Folk is no different. Many of the features that you've gotten to know and love will appear here, so you can schedule your real life around your game calendar to take part in the game's special holidays. The two biggest new features in City Folk are the additions of the city and Wii Speak. Wii Speak wasn't hooked up this time because the room was too loud for it to work properly, but we were told that up to four groups or households can communicate with each other through this Wii peripheral.

We started a new game and found out that we weren't able to get on the bus to go to the city right off the bat. Tom Nook is still in town, and you'll have to do what he tells you to if you hope to get anywhere--or make any bells, the in-game currency. Once we had enough bells in our pockets, we headed into the city. All we did was stand at the bus stop and the bus magically appeared within a few moments. Kapp'n, whom you might remember from the previous games, will be driving the bus to take you to your destination. Once we arrived, we saw a lovely fountain in the city center and many city dwellers milling around. We made our way around the relatively small city circle and visited all of the shops. We first stopped off at Shampoodle, a salon in which, if you want to, you can get a Mii mask so you can look like your Mii. The auction house was empty, but we're sure that once items start to appear, it should become a regular hot spot for people who like to collect new items.

Given that we're nearing Halloween, Gracie's boutique had a lot of colorful Halloween-themed items. Collectors who enjoy hoarding furniture should have a blast trying to decorate their own homes with seasonal furnishings. There was candy-themed furniture as well that looked remarkably sweet and enticing. We were especially attached to the watermelon coffee table we saw at Tangy's house, and the citrus carpet and stools were tasty-looking, too. Dr. Shrunk is also back, but instead of paying you a visit, you can pay to see him do stand-up comedy. He's not very good, but you'll learn some emoticons that can then be used when you play with friends, or if you just feel like making your character laugh or smile.

Dr. Shrunk should stick with his day job.

For those who want to import their Animal Crossing: Wild World character, you can. You can also bring over the items that you have collected in the DS game and transfer them to your catalogue on the Wii. However, you won't be getting the items for free, and your bells don't transfer over, but you'll be able to bring over some of your favorite items. The ability to communicate and share with friends online is incredibly easy, which makes City Folk an ideal social game. You'll need friend codes, but once you have them, you can send each other messages, chat, or visit them in their own towns. If you want to take a picture, pressing the 1 and 2 buttons simultaneously will take a snapshot, save it to the SD card, and then send it to a friend. Although you can't play together on the same system, you can have up to four different towns saved on your Wii so that household members can play in separate villages but still be able to send notes to each other.

City Folk's visuals have been polished since E3, so characters and environments are looking crisp, clean, and cute. Fans should be prepared to once again jump into the colorful world of Animal Crossing, but the best part is that anyone can pick up and play. The controls are simple and the interface is easy to use. There are no goals except the ones you make for yourself, so get ready to start a new life when Animal Crossing: City Folk is released on November 16.

Discussion

74 comments
1snoop2
1snoop2

jak207 you can actually bring your ds profile onto the wii!

link631
link631

looks great but to much addicting

jak2027
jak2027

SO close! BUT DANGIT! I was hoping on moving my millonare into the game... So i cant even bring money in my pockets?

ganga_
ganga_

this game looks soo boring. but i wish everybody a lot of fun with it

blankshore
blankshore

SOO pumped for this game. I need a nice relaxing game to play. All the games I have are really stressing me out, plus my ds ac is getting old.

dom1000
dom1000

WHere are the new set of item cloth and stuff?? i dont see anithing new in term of item set and fish bone ect ect.I would buy this if more different set of item are going to be in it.But so far its only the same thing over again.

nintendonoob
nintendonoob

nice, a new animal crossing game. i loooooe um

dylanmcc
dylanmcc

I agree with some of these posts. Whilst playing Animal Crossing, you feel like you're having heaps of fun and you're doing heaps of stuff. When you stop and think about what you've done, you've just caught a few bag fulls of fish. It's hypnotising. But I love it. And I'm definately picking this up. WiiSpeak + City Folk FTW!!

LukePlayer
LukePlayer

the only new thing i see is that you can have 4 viligas on one wii

ShadowPhoenix27
ShadowPhoenix27

this game is a great mix of both the ds and gamecube verions of the game. I didnt care for the gamecube verion, but I loved the ds verion. At the same time the ds version didnt have some things that the gamecube had. Now they're going to bring everything back as well as some new things! 1 more month, I can't wait!

GG7
GG7

I bought my Wii because of this game being announced! Up until then, there was nothing on this system that interested me enough to bother with the hassle of trying to find a Wii at the retail price.

RedYoshiKing
RedYoshiKing

I like how the games never end you can always keep going

Jamez634
Jamez634

looks awesome! if only i had a wii :(

qsceszawdxs
qsceszawdxs

looks better then the first one on ds it goes like this hi whats youre name andy ok are you a girl you hhave to answer WHAT NOOO like a rude monster machine you come in village you meet a guy that sells a house he says hi wanna buy a house you say hi just when you say th n sold for a live time prissen you think what contract sined nintendo WTF you think ok whats going on you a job what is is catching bugs ok then you get youre life sold out then you shut down youre ds whitout saving next day a mole shows up OMG what is this he says crap obout law and stuf you dont listen just pres a then he says did you hear me you say yes then the mole says tell me what i just said uhm uhm uhm MONKEY! nooo and you are suid for laws reasons at age 6 SCREWD lol

glitchgeeman
glitchgeeman

One thing I love about Animal Crossing is how I can play the likes of Halo 3, Gears of War, and GTA IV yet one game that will never lose it's charm in my heart is Animal Crossing. There honestly is no other game like it. I mean, has there ever been a game that made you cut your Halloween party short or spend your time playing it rather then opening your Christmas presents just so you could get the holiday-exclusive items without cheating? This game has a lot of potential and I can't wait to see what they do with it. I just hope transferring my items won't be too much of a hassle or too expensive (the preview said it wasn't free), I wasted too much time of my life collecting every piece of Samurai furniture in the DS game to redo that all over again. :P

goliiath
goliiath

In other words it is an ALMOST must have. It missed the mark by That (-) much.

goliiath
goliiath

I guess It's Ok but there should still be some goals. or even better! rewards for your achievements. Like If you saved up 1,000,000,000 bells you get a life subscription to updates on popular characters and the best richest players in the game. And get like a trophy or something. I know they kinda did rewards in the past game's but that would be even better! And maybe even add an airport. In the next game after this one. And maybe make the city bigger. I saw the movie for the game and...it's...quite...Tiny. But what there doing now is great and nothing can match Nintendo Games. Nintendo is the BEST!

TeabagChampion
TeabagChampion

I think that the amazing thing about Animal Crossing is how you play the game and when you play it. Its the only game that I know that there are things that only happen once a year, like in the real world in real life. Perfect example would be something like your birthday. I think its super awesome that if you don't wake up in real life, you might not get any gifts..... well, maybe not until you get up to get it. Well, the same thing happens in AC. You might not have the time to play it on an occasion like Christmas or and Halloween, but you are always likely to get whatever it was that you needed to get on that date (without cheating too). I do agree that Nintendo can take this game a lot further, but than again, maybe this is a giant step for Nintendo. Or maybe Nintendo has something that they dont want to cough up yet. Who knows? But, I highly think that this is a must get tltle for the holidays.

Peach100
Peach100

I'm looking forward to this game. I'm getting bored of the DS version and that will probably happen to me even with the Wii one too but I don't care. I know that I'm still going to be able to play and have fun with the Wii version even if it's for a little while.

PoindeJ
PoindeJ

I would get it, but it's just going to be a disappointment. Nintendo could go SO much farther with this franchise, but they're not innovating beyond the GCN and DS versions at all. Anyone could've just said "let's add a city" (that's the first thing I thought of, actually), but it doesn't add very many substantial gameplay elements. I've already played Animal Crossing. My village is still there; if I want to go back and play it, I don't need to buy another game to do so.

neildneil
neildneil

you'll play this game for 5 hours straight then afterwards you'll be like oh my god i achieved absolutely nothing there. you will then proceed to play the game even more. its seems insanely boring and if we're being honest probably is, but you don't notice that when you're playing, which is very strange

_AbBaNdOn
_AbBaNdOn

*twirls finger* The problem with this series is that you mostly only get/find/collect premade crap. Let us do more than paint on shirts!!!! My sims > AC

Black747
Black747

Eewww, Friend codes! Gross!!

Metalhead6823
Metalhead6823

If it is just like the last two animal crossing games (which it is) then it will be a lot of fun. The most fun someone can have doing absolutely nothing in a game. I don't get why this game works, who wants to play a game for 4 hours catching fish to sell so I can pay off the morgage.

WhiteTiger984
WhiteTiger984

you basically live a virtual life.....kinda slow and potentially boring....yet strangely addictive

evrdayblues
evrdayblues

Just curious exactly what kind of game this is. I've never played this or the Sims. Don't really know wut to expect...

kbaily
kbaily

At first I wasn't sure if this was adding anything new but I like the fact you can leave your town and venture into the city.

tiny_weeman
tiny_weeman

Im not too sure what to think about this because I got bored of AC:WW quite easily and I think its gonna be another ripoff with improvements... But that said i still cant wait to play it!

taddia
taddia

lol nintendo did it again.. i was so meh. so meh about this game.. i ahve the preicous ones tho. then i read:"auctionhouse" and said: ok im getting this. omg they always find that simple idea that incredibly turns me on!!!

taddia
taddia

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

SonicTheMonkey
SonicTheMonkey

I'm debating whether or not to transfer my character from Wild World. Maybe I'd get moe out of the experience if I didn't, then again, maybe I'd get more if I did...

zandervm
zandervm

I can't wait. Better set aside a sizable chunk of my time in mid-November for this game.

wyme2
wyme2

might be good but i probably wont get it .

Hidden_Assasin
Hidden_Assasin

every body said force unleashed was gonna be "the best" and it ended up ok....i hope that AC dosnt turn out the same way *crosses fingers*

-Aero
-Aero

i cant tell if this is gonna be a bust or another nintendo classic

ranman1990
ranman1990

ive lost interest in this game,... i cant find it fun any more .

yugiohfan99
yugiohfan99

Animal Crossing looks better than ever.

Mike0193
Mike0193

nice this will be the best animal crossing yet.

The_Dude1212
The_Dude1212

Although I've never really *completed* either Animal Crossings, they've each managed to hold my interest for at least a year apiece, and Downtown will probably help keep me going for longer yet.

AAwiidog
AAwiidog

ive never played an animal crossing game before but my frend had it for ds and it looked pretty fun

tkmacs
tkmacs

isn't coming to europe until 5th December. Thinking of getting it as Christmas present for my sister but i'm probably gonna rip the game open and play it a day after buying it. Soooooooooooo excited.