Wii

North America

Animal Crossing: City Folk

by Mike Gamin - November 28, 2008, 11:30 am PST
Total comments: 47

7

Is it a new sequel or a glorified port of Wild World?

As the holiday season approaches, many Wii owners are looking for that perfect game to stand alone as the must-have title. That role is usually filled by a great first party offering from Nintendo themselves, which means Animal Crossing should be it this year. Does a barely incremental change over the DS version live up to that sort of billing?

For those that don't know, the Animal Crossing series fits right into the life simulation genre with a focus on collecting things. It doesn't feature an elaborate career mechanic, but it does have hundreds of different things to seek out. These collectible items are closely tethered to a time system that ties in directly with the system clock. When it's winter in real life, there's snow on the ground in the game. In April, more bugs come out for catching. During Halloween, a special event involving pumpkins occurs in your town. When you haven't played in a while, weeds grow all over and the locals bug you, wondering where you have been. This creates the great illusion that the game plays itself when you aren't around.

Animal Crossing also takes this concept a step further in the way it offers multiplayer. While two people in the same room can't each pick up a controller and play together, both players can create characters that live in the same town. Therefore, if your brother plays the game early in the morning, he will get the first shot at any fresh fruit on the trees. If he picks it all, there won't be any for you until it grows back again, which can take a few days. This same-house, same-town mechanic is why most people's opinions of the series are directly related to whether or not they are the only one playing it in their house. The game can get quite boring without at least some level of competition and community.

Another great mechanic that really adds value to the experience is the ability to visit other players' towns. This means you can meet new characters, find fruit that is most likely rare in your town, see what a different shop is currently selling, and enjoy a general change of scenery. On top of all of that, animals you meet in your friend's town may move to yours and vice-versa. Knowledge of all past interactions with other characters comes with them when they move. It’s not unheard of to have them show you a silly note your friend wrote to them some months prior. This is another example of what makes this simulation game so successful; it does a great job of making a virtual world seem a bit more real.

Here's the wrinkle though. Anyone who has read this review up to this point may have glanced at the top of the screen, double checking that they were in fact reading a review of the brand new Animal Crossing: City Folk, and not the original GameCube game. Don't worry though. City Folk includes most of the great new features added to the DS version, including online connections to your friends' towns. However, this is also the main problem. City Folk is little more than an enhanced port of the DS hit. Ignoring the addition of the City area, which we'll get to later, it's nearly impossible to quantify the changes or additions the Wii game introduces to the series. The only immediately obvious tweak is actually a reversion to an original GameCube feature, that being that multiple players in the same town each have their own house again (instead of living in the same house like in the DS game).

This is why - if you are a long time fan of the series - it's hard to play City Folk without it leaving a bad taste in your mouth. You’ve probably done everything before. A brand new city area has been added to the game, which is accessed by quickly hopping on a bus at a stop near your gate. Here you can do several things, none of which are that exciting. Firstly, Redd's Emporium and Katrina's Fortune Telling booth have each received a permanent location here, as opposed to the temporary visits they used to make in previous games. While the easy access is nice, it's another case of the developers filling out the game using old material. They also gave the Happy Room Academy (previously only heard of through in-game mail) a headquarters. While interesting on the first visit, it's mostly pointless as the only reason to return is to see the current model room, which does little more than show off a specific item set. Besides that, there is also a new high-end boutique, a nice touch since it's another way of collecting all of the items. Unfortunately, it does not change its inventory frequently enough.

Arguably the two most exciting features of the City are the inclusion of an Auction House and Hair Salon. The hair salon brings Mii support to the title by allowing you to give your on-screen character a makeover based on your Mii. This would be outstanding if it didn't come with so many side effects. Basically, any accessory that goes on your character's head can not be worn at the same time as a Mii mask. This means that glasses, masks, and hats are all pointless if you want your character to look like your Mii. If you choose not to wear a Mii mask, the salon can also be used to change your hair style, which is a nice touch, as previous Animal Crossing games picked a random look for your character and you were stuck with it.

On the surface, the auction house appears to be a great means of completing your collection, as it tone would assume that it would be at least feature items from gamers nationwide. Sadly, this is not the case at all. Items can be placed on auction during the appropriate span of time and a reserve price can be decided on, but you can only auction off one item per auction, which looks to amount to around one item per real-life week. When the bidding phase of the auction begins, you will have the ability to bid on items offered only by people on your Animal Crossing friend list and your Wii system friend list. In a bizarre twist, Animal Crossing actually utilizes the system list. Regardless, the end result is both a very limited audience for your item, and a very limited library of items to bid on. This flies in the face of what an auction house in a game of this nature should be. It is impossible for a mini-economy to form in which in-game items can attain a true monetary value.

The bizarre use of the Wii system friend list doesn't stop there either. The post office in town features two cool new ways of sending letters from the game to your friends. You can either send them to your friend in-game (if you've exchanged Animal Crossing friend codes), or to your friend’s Wii message board (if you've exchanged Wii friend codes). When looking at your Wii friend list to choose a recipient, it even tells you which of them own Animal Crossing: City Folk. Even with this information, it is impossible to directly add them to your Animal Crossing list. You still have to write down your code, send it to them, wait for them to send their code back, and then add them manually before you can visit their town. So let's get this straight: this is a first-party Wii game that makes direct contact with your Wii system’s friends list, and also knows for a fact which members of that list have the same game as you. Yet, to actually play with each other online you need to add them to a separate list entirely? How exactly are per-game friend codes necessary at this point? It makes absolutely no sense at all.

That's not the only aspect of the online system that is frustrating. When the WiiConnect 24 service was first announced, many people immediately equated the functionality with the Animal Crossing universe. What better way to give the impression that your town is active even when you aren't playing than to allow your friends to visit your town even when your system is off? Sadly, this is not the case with City Folk. Connecting to friends works just like it does in Wild World. You have to go to the gate guard and tell him to open your gate up before anyone can come see you. Like most Wii games, this means that you will most likely need some form of external communication in order to play together.

When you do get to play with someone else online, the addition of the Wii Speak microphone really adds to the fun. Assuming both people have voice chat enabled, a full conversation can be carried out regardless of where the characters are in the town. The placement of the microphone and lack of headphone requirement led many to wonder about the potential for echoes and feedback; while the noise cancellation in the title isn't perfect, it seems to work flawlessly about half the time. The other half of the time, conversations are still very easy to have but you will most likely hear an echo of your own voice. On a few rare occasions I was a victim of some intense feedback loops that had all parties involved lunging for the mute button on their TV. Overall, the voice chat worked great and should be a great addition to Nintendo's future online offerings. Here's to hoping for either a rerelease or patch for Mario Kart Wii that adds support for the device.

There are several extremely frustrating issues with this incarnation of Animal Crossing. That said, what was written in the beginning of this review still holds true: the core game is still extremely charming. If you have never played an Animal Crossing game before and the calendar and collecting features of this simulation intrigue you, don't hesitate to pick it up. It can be extremely engrossing and amount to months, if not years, of enjoyment for a player. If you have played or are still playing Animal Crossing: Wild World for DS, ask yourself, are you really interested in doing the same things all over again?

Score

Graphics Sound Control Gameplay Lastability Final
4 8 7 7 10 7
Graphics
4

Throw us a bone here, Nintendo. You could maintain the charm and art style but still make use of modern graphics technology. Why are the textures, models, and backgrounds still so repetitive and dated?

Sound
8

The music is charming and changes every hour, which is important in a game like this. Sadly, the soundtrack is very similar to that of Wild World on DS.

Control
7

Animal Crossing isn't a very control-oriented title, but the addition of the Wii pointer for inventory management helps. It can still be difficult to make your character face the precise direction you are looking for when digging holes, bug catching, or fishing.

Gameplay
7

If this were the first game in the series this score would be higher, but as a sequel it doesn't bring enough new ideas to the table.

Lastability
10

One thing you can't argue with in an Animal Crossing game is lastability. There are hundreds of items to find, bugs to hunt, and fish to catch. The great calendar system keeps you coming back all year.

Final
7

It's an outstanding game for newcomers to the series, but veterans will find themselves wanting a lot more.

Summary

Pros
  • Still a fun simulation game
  • Voice chat
Cons
  • Little more than an enhanced port of Wild World
  • Same old Nintendo online frustrations
  • Very limited auction house
Review Page 2: Conclusion

Talkback

ThePermNovember 28, 2008

nintendo games get 7s? thisproves they aren't trying hard anymore

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterNovember 28, 2008

Quote from: ThePerm

nintendo games get 7s? thisproves they aren't trying hard anymore

Yeah, never mind the fact that Super Mario Galaxy is the highest rated game ever, Brawl got a lot of 10s despite laggy online, Wii Fit was very well received by both the gaming and non gaming media and Mario Kart Wii received much better reviews than Mario Kart Double Dash.

Yeah, they are definitely not trying anymore...

nickmitchNovember 28, 2008

Well, Galaxy, Brawl and Mario Kart came out, then we got Wii Music and this.  They could've stopped trying right around Wii Fit.

NinGurl69 *hugglesNovember 28, 2008

Nintendo games get 7s since Wii Sports and Twilight Princess.  The casual approach is destroying console gaming.

Nick DiMolaNick DiMola, Staff AlumnusNovember 28, 2008

Only one question: If two players share the same town do they each have their own house or do they share a room like in Wild World?

I really hope it isn't room sharing again that was so lame and pretty much gave ownership more to the player who played more often.

DAaaMan64November 28, 2008

Quote from: NinGurl69

Nintendo games get 7s since Wii Sports and Twilight Princess.  The casual approach is destroying console gaming.

There are several 7s scattered around Nintendo's history aren't there?

But um.. I think next year and the following we'll see some fresh gems from Nintendo.  Take my word from it.

PlugabugzNovember 28, 2008

It's pretty clear Brawl and Mario Kart was the peak of their powers. Now they can moonwalk back down to mediocrity!

and get pampered with cash on the way down

Ian SaneNovember 28, 2008

This review makes this sound like the ultimate version of Animal Crossing.  So if you don't own any AC games this is absolutely the one you should buy.

There's just one problem:  Reggie said this was a core game.  Well core gamers will likely already own the Cube or DS versions.  This is pretty much only of use for newcomers.  Our supposed "core game" for Christmas is really a Wii-make of a game that most of those who b!tched at Nintendo about their crappy E3 already own.  I didn't believe Reggie at the time and don't really blame him for this.  He was just handed a lame-o non-gamer focused line-up from NCL and had to scramble to deal with legitimate complaints from core gamers.  He could either bullsh!t about this port or admit Nintendo had zilch on the Wii from Warioland's release until whenever the hell Punch-Out or Sin & Punishment 2 come out.  He did the only thing he could.

Though it looks like we might get over six months of no Wii core games from Nintendo.  Obviously all those accusactions the Nintendo is neglecting the core in favour of non-gamers are totally unfounded.

PaleMike Gamin, Contributing EditorNovember 29, 2008

Quote from: Mr.

Only one question: If two players share the same town do they each have their own house or do they share a room like in Wild World?

I really hope it isn't room sharing again that was so lame and pretty much gave ownership more to the player who played more often.

Quote:

The only immediately obvious tweak is actually a reversion to an original GameCube feature, that being that multiple players in the same town each have their own house again (instead of living in the same house like in the DS game).

;)

MarioNovember 29, 2008

To be honest I don't think Reggie knows anything about actual videogames.

PaleMike Gamin, Contributing EditorNovember 29, 2008

So Mario got temp banned once, so he comes back and pretends to be totally anti-nintendo for a drawn out period of time?  Is anyone on this forum actually a real person? =P

GoldenPhoenixNovember 29, 2008

Quote from: Pale

So Mario got temp banned once, so he comes back and pretends to be totally anti-nintendo for a drawn out period of time?  Is anyone on this forum actually a real person? =P

I am. I'm also going to blackmail you. If you do not give AC a 8/10 you can't have any of my peaches

PaleMike Gamin, Contributing EditorNovember 29, 2008

Honestly, when I first started playing the game... after about 3-4 days, I was ready to give the game a five...

The score went up to a 7 because it still managed to grab me, even though it is more of the same.  :)

LuigiHannNovember 29, 2008

Quote from: Ian

There's just one problem:  Reggie said this was a core game.  Well core gamers will likely already own the Cube or DS versions.

I feel like, in the grand scale, a lot of "core gamers" skipped the Gamecube.

DAaaMan64November 29, 2008

lol any game that is 95% the same as the last game shouldn't be getting above a 6. ;)

ToruresuNovember 29, 2008

...and yet the Halos and Guitar Heroes keep getting good scores...when all you do is shoot with diferent weapons, to diferent (and the same) enemies, or push the same buttons on the plastic guitar, just to a diferent tune.

Well, I like it so far. I just forgot how much I hated Tom Nook :(

DAaaMan64November 29, 2008

Guitar Hero and other rythem games should be an exceptional case I think. Halo no. Soul Calibur no.  Advance Wars no. Fire Emblem no. (even though I love that game)

The problem is that this isn't even an EVOLUTION of the DS game.  It's practically the same game ported to the Wii.  At least all of those other games (Halo, Soul Calibur, Advance Wars, Guitar Hero, etc.) have obvious iterative changes.

What disappoints me the most is that Nintendo didn't even do anything with Wii24.  And the Friend Codes stuff?  Terrible.  I hate it when Nintendo doesn't even try.  They sell tons of everything regardless, the least they could do is try.

Nick DiMolaNick DiMola, Staff AlumnusNovember 29, 2008

Quote from: Pale

Quote from: Mr.

Only one question: If two players share the same town do they each have their own house or do they share a room like in Wild World?

I really hope it isn't room sharing again that was so lame and pretty much gave ownership more to the player who played more often.

Quote:

The only immediately obvious tweak is actually a reversion to an original GameCube feature, that being that multiple players in the same town each have their own house again (instead of living in the same house like in the DS game).

;)

LOL, whoops. Apparently I skimmed over that one. Glad to hear it, now I may actually play it.

DAaaMan64November 29, 2008

Quote from: Lindy

The problem is that this isn't even an EVOLUTION of the DS game.  It's practically the same game ported to the Wii.  At least all of those other games (Halo, Soul Calibur, Advance Wars, Guitar Hero, etc.) have obvious iterative changes.

What disappoints me the most is that Nintendo didn't even do anything with Wii24.  And the Friend Codes stuff?  Terrible.  I hate it when Nintendo doesn't even try.  They sell tons of everything regardless, the least they could do is try.

lol Soul Calibur

Quote from: DAaaMan64

lol Soul Calibur

LOL at what?  Soul Calibur IV has a bunch of new characters, create-a-player mode...obvious additions.  AC: City Folk has virtually nothing new in it.

DAaaMan64November 29, 2008

lol online multiplayer in the same town. Microphone support. Slightly better visuals. Plus... obvious additions.

Sounds like they are the same to me.

NinGurl69 *hugglesNovember 29, 2008

Soul Calibur 4 does not undo Soul Calibur 3.

GoldenPhoenixNovember 29, 2008

I do think there is a chance Nintendo may use AC to tinker with downloadable content and could expand with time as they try to give it legs.

MarioNovember 29, 2008

I really hope so.

PaleMike Gamin, Contributing EditorNovember 29, 2008

I hope for DLC too, but the fact that the package doesn't have that pay and play emblem makes me doubtful... if they were even considering it they would have put that badge on there don't you think?  Unless of course they plan on giving it away for free, which would be fine by me.

And honestly, would it kill them to improve the graphics, even a smidge? I mean, when I saw the game at PAX, I thought "Hey, they brought back the N64! Cool!" But seriously, it's not like they're reaching the breaking point.

Quote from: Pale

I hope for DLC too, but the fact that the package doesn't have that pay and play emblem makes me doubtful... if they were even considering it they would have put that badge on there don't you think?  Unless of course they plan on giving it away for free, which would be fine by me.

They said at E3 that the DLC was going to be free.

Quote from: DAaaMan64

lol online multiplayer in the same town. Microphone support. Slightly better visuals. Plus... obvious additions.

Apparently so significant are these additions that every single review out there slams City Folk for being an only marginally-enhanced version of Wild World.  Right.

MarioNovember 30, 2008

Jungle Beat and Pikmin Wii will be more enhanced

DAaaMan64November 30, 2008

Quote from: Lindy

Quote from: DAaaMan64

lol online multiplayer in the same town. Microphone support. Slightly better visuals. Plus... obvious additions.

Apparently so significant are these additions that every single review out there slams City Folk for being an only marginally-enhanced version of Wild World.  Right.

Soul Calibur is only marginally different from it's original, and it took 4 versions just to get to the marginal. 

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusNovember 30, 2008

Quote from: Pale

I hope for DLC too, but the fact that the package doesn't have that pay and play emblem makes me doubtful... if they were even considering it they would have put that badge on there don't you think?  Unless of course they plan on giving it away for free, which would be fine by me.

The pay and play badge only means paid DLC, free DLC is still an option. Alien Crush Returns had free DLC where overtime it unlocks a new powerup ball.

AVDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: GoldenPhoenix

I do think there is a chance Nintendo may use AC to tinker with downloadable content and could expand with time as they try to give it legs.

I heard rumors with Wii Connect 24 you will recieve random downloadable items via online from Nintendo.

However the lack of Wii internal memory really hampers what Nintendo can do. If Nintendo was this lazy with the main game, I wouldn't be to optimistic in downloadable content. 

It's really a shame what Nintendo did.

I really would of liked if the Virtual Console games you own are games in your house. You can play them multiplayer online, now that would of BEEN AWESOME. i don't think it would of been that hard to do either.

Adding animals you can find and train and do tricks with. Maybe random animals that you can trade and learn how to take care of. Sort of like adding Nintendogs into the game.

Having the ability to date and eventually marry people would be great too.

Having your own garden too that you can grow and water.

Have an arcade in the city where you can demo virtual console or wiiware games.

having an election for major of the city once a year and slight differences to the city like items and closes opening / closing depending who wins the election. The major is voted for online and you have debates you go and watch in game.

Fleshing out the fishing to be just like Twilight Princess fishing.

having the ability to go to beach and surf and swim and maybe later find scuba equipment and it becomes sort of a limited 'Endless ocean'.

SO MANY IDEAS AND YET NINTENDO DID NOT BOTHER TO AT LEAST EXPAND THE FRANCHISE.

I wouldn't mind if F-zero GX 2 only had online and new maps, but Animal Crossing is something that could be fleshed out and made into something seriously cool. In my eyes Nintendo is coasting and becoming arrogant again and that will come back to haunt them.

HypotheliciouslyDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: GoldenPhoenix

Quote from: Pale

So Mario got temp banned once, so he comes back and pretends to be totally anti-nintendo for a drawn out period of time?  Is anyone on this forum actually a real person? =P

I am. I'm also going to blackmail you. If you do not give AC a 8/10 you can't have any of my peaches

Wiggles, where are you? This was perfectly set up for one of your infamous quips! Oh well, I guess I'll have to do it.

That's too bad.......I could eat a peach for hours. lol. Guess the movie?

GoldenPhoenixDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: Mr.

Quote from: GoldenPhoenix

I do think there is a chance Nintendo may use AC to tinker with downloadable content and could expand with time as they try to give it legs.

I heard rumors with Wii Connect 24 you will recieve random downloadable items via online from Nintendo.

However the lack of Wii internal memory really hampers what Nintendo can do. If Nintendo was this lazy with the main game, I wouldn't be to optimistic in downloadable content. 

It's really a shame what Nintendo did.

I really would of liked if the Virtual Console games you own are games in your house. You can play them multiplayer online, now that would of BEEN AWESOME. i don't think it would of been that hard to do either.

Adding animals you can find and train and do tricks with. Maybe random animals that you can trade and learn how to take care of. Sort of like adding Nintendogs into the game.

Having the ability to date and eventually marry people would be great too.

Having your own garden too that you can grow and water.

Have an arcade in the city where you can demo virtual console or wiiware games.

having an election for major of the city once a year and slight differences to the city like items and closes opening / closing depending who wins the election. The major is voted for online and you have debates you go and watch in game.

Fleshing out the fishing to be just like Twilight Princess fishing.

having the ability to go to beach and surf and swim and maybe later find scuba equipment and it becomes sort of a limited 'Endless ocean'.

SO MANY IDEAS AND YET NINTENDO DID NOT BOTHER TO AT LEAST EXPAND THE FRANCHISE.

I wouldn't mind if F-zero GX 2 only had online and new maps, but Animal Crossing is something that could be fleshed out and made into something seriously cool. In my eyes Nintendo is coasting and becoming arrogant again and that will come back to haunt them.

Paragraphs are your friend.

DasmosDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: Stogi

That's too bad.......I could eat a peach for hours. lol. Guess the movie?

Face/Off

EasyCureDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: Stogi

Quote from: GoldenPhoenix

Quote from: Pale

So Mario got temp banned once, so he comes back and pretends to be totally anti-nintendo for a drawn out period of time?  Is anyone on this forum actually a real person? =P

I am. I'm also going to blackmail you. If you do not give AC a 8/10 you can't have any of my peaches

Wiggles, where are you? This was perfectly set up for one of your infamous quips! Oh well, I guess I'll have to do it.

That's too bad.......I could eat a peach for hours. lol. Guess the movie?

Dammit! I dropped the ball due to my infrequency of the Talkback Thread!

MarioDecember 01, 2008

Quote:

Adding animals you can find and train and do tricks with. Maybe random animals that you can trade and learn how to take care of. Sort of like adding Nintendogs into the game.

You do realise the villagers are animals right? That'd be just... weird.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: Ian

This review makes this sound like the ultimate version of Animal Crossing.  So if you don't own any AC games this is absolutely the one you should buy.

There's just one problem:  Reggie said this was a core game.  Well core gamers will likely already own the Cube or DS versions.  This is pretty much only of use for newcomers.  Our supposed "core game" for Christmas is really a Wii-make of a game that most of those who b!tched at Nintendo about their crappy E3 already own.  I didn't believe Reggie at the time and don't really blame him for this.  He was just handed a lame-o non-gamer focused line-up from NCL and had to scramble to deal with legitimate complaints from core gamers.  He could either bullsh!t about this port or admit Nintendo had zilch on the Wii from Warioland's release until whenever the hell Punch-Out or Sin & Punishment 2 come out.  He did the only thing he could.

Though it looks like we might get over six months of no Wii core games from Nintendo.  Obviously all those accusactions the Nintendo is neglecting the core in favour of non-gamers are totally unfounded.

Ian, what you are about to hear may shock and stun you. Before you read further make sure you check your heart, keep clean underwear and pants nearby and make sure someone is near you just in case you have an epileptic attack.

OK...here we go..

*Breathes in...

Animal Crossing; City Folk is indeed a core title.

*Somewhere on earth, kittens explode, children bleed from their ears, cows stampede crushing millions in the process and business men jump from 100 story buildings

What's happening is that the fanbase is confusing the term core with "hardcore gameplay".

In the Blue Ocean strategy, a core title means an existing franchise that has already been proven successful with both existing and new customers. Its a title the company can depend on for a sure fire hit and has gained a respectable status among the company and its fanbase.

When Animal Crossing was first released it was heavily aimed at the core fanbase, the diehard Nintendo fan. It made sure to promote features that would appeal to the hardcore fan, like hidden NES games, E-reader support, GC to GBA features and the Nintendo brand behind it. In fact, it was labeled not as a groundbreaking title with unique gameplay, but as a tried and true Nintendo title (in the sense that it features the innovation that made Nintendo so popular with fans in the first place).

When AC GC was proven a big success with its fanbase, Nintendo decided to aim at the then unexplored casual and non gamer markets. They knew that the core fanbase had introduced the game to many non gamers, so with that in mind they sought out to appeal to those people as well as please existing fans.

Wild World was announced, and with it they kept the gameplay intact so that those that played the first game would feel right at home while introduced new features, including online play, that catered to the new audience and already existing fans.

By the time 2006 ended Wild World had become a massive hit, thanks to the core fanbase bring the franchise into the spotlight and the non gamers picking it up in droves. Thanks to this, Animal Crossing has become a certified Nintendo franchise, one Nintendo knows that can market again and again and still see profit, in the same way that marketing Mario and Zelda makes nonstop profit.

It has received an animated film in Japan and has tons of licensed toys. It is constantly referenced in other core Nintendo titles, like Smash Bros.

If this doesn't scream core, nothing will.

So now that I see a broader picture I see the exact, same thing happening with City Folk. Gameplay still remains the same so those familiar with the game can start right away while it adds new features for those that has missed the series (that being a new city to explore, expanded online play and voice chat). Nintendo hopes the new features are enough to get people to upgrade to the Wii version and evolves the franchise from there.

Yes, core can also mean "traditional gameplay", and the AC series is know for its unconventional mechanics. But its at heart a true blue core title.

Look at it this way...When Mario and Zelda debuted on the NES their gameplay methods were untested. The gaming market had crashed and people were unsure if the NES would bring it back to life.

The first ones to try out these games were the core fanbase, the ones that already had experience with games thanks to the Atari systems and the arcades. Once the game was a hit with them, they introduced it to new gamers who had never touched a game controller before. Both titles were praised for its innovation and unconventional methods of gameplay.

With the fanbase already built, Nintendo now expands Mario and Zelda. Gameplay wise, Mario Bros. 3 (I am skipping SMB 2 since it never was a Mario title) plays similarly to the first title. But it features better graphics, more ambitious levels and more of them. Thanks to this the fans that grew up with the first title went back in droves and brought along many, many, MANY new gamers. To this day, its considered one of the best Mario games ever.

With Zelda, the definitive title was "A Link to the Past". Even with a 3D world and epic cinemas adorning "Ocarina of time" gamers still see "ALTTP" as the best Zelda game ever and the first Zelda game they had ever played.

It still played exactly like the first NES titles, right down to the overhead perspective, but its new additions attracted a lot of new gamers who turned Zelda into a definitive core title for Nintendo.

This has happened with F-Zero, Star Fox, Metroid, Pokemon and Kirby. All of these franchises were core titles who at one point were new ideas waiting to be discovered, and the first to discover them were the core fanbase.

The tl:dr crowd: Animal Crossing is a core title because its roots can be traced to its beginnings with the core fanbase  and has reached success  thanks to both fans supporting each version while new fans dived in to experience the new features.

Even the AC gameplay is core, despite it being unconventional. By now, fans know how it plays. In fact, it being exactly like Wild World makes it a core title because it decided not to mess with perfection.

So say it with me..."Animal Crossing is a core title. It aims at both old fans and new fans alike. The gameplay is traditional".

Could Nintendo had upgraded AC Wii a little more? Definitely. Is it disappointing that its a port of the DS version. It sure is. But does this stop it from being a core title? HELL NO!

Whether its your type of game or not is one thing. The other is claiming that it isn't a core title because it ain't the type of gameplay you expect and enjoy.

PaleMike Gamin, Contributing EditorDecember 01, 2008

I just wanted to say that the chance of "secret" DLC, as Vega brought up, is next to nothing....  as he correctly brings up the size constraints of the Wii.

For example, the game has a screenshot option, but it can only ever store ONE shot at a time, and that only lasts for as long as you have the game running.  Therefore, if you want to keep your screenshots you have to make sure you remember to take the time and go in and tell it to transfer it to the SD card between each shot....

This is proof that even the developers of the first party games are feeling the memory crunch.  In my opinion, it's one of Nintendo's biggest blunders ever.

GoldenPhoenixDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: Pale

I just wanted to say that the chance of "secret" DLC, as Vega brought up, is next to nothing....  as he correctly brings up the size constraints of the Wii.

For example, the game has a screenshot option, but it can only ever store ONE shot at a time, and that only lasts for as long as you have the game running.  Therefore, if you want to keep your screenshots you have to make sure you remember to take the time and go in and tell it to transfer it to the SD card between each shot....

This is proof that even the developers of the first party games are feeling the memory crunch.  In my opinion, it's one of Nintendo's biggest blunders ever.

A blunder means it has hurt Nintendo considerably like carts, but right now they are rolling in the money so it is far from a blunder!

MarioDecember 01, 2008

Perhaps an intentional blunder.

Quote from: Mario

Quote:

Adding animals you can find and train and do tricks with. Maybe random animals that you can trade and learn how to take care of. Sort of like adding Nintendogs into the game.

You do realise the villagers are animals right? That'd be just... weird.

Isn't that the basis of Neopets?  At least that's what the Capcom guy told me.

HypotheliciouslyDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: Mario

Quote:

Adding animals you can find and train and do tricks with. Maybe random animals that you can trade and learn how to take care of. Sort of like adding Nintendogs into the game.

You do realise the villagers are animals right? That'd be just... weird.

Aliens?

KDR_11kDecember 01, 2008

Quote from: Mr.

I really would of liked if the Virtual Console games you own are games in your house. You can play them multiplayer online, now that would of BEEN AWESOME. i don't think it would of been that hard to do either.

It's very hard, you got a game that's designed to have controller lag that's way less than one frame and you try to play it over the internet with latencies in the double or triple digit milliseconds? Online games use prediction to avoid lag and some are client-server so that one system runs the simulation and sends the results to the other systems, with a VC game none of that would work. You have a gamestate that's affected by button presses and you have no idea how it'll behave next frame, you have to make sure both systems' gamestates remain in sync so they must both receive the exact same inputs on the exact same frames which just doesn't work well when you got latencies involved. A way to do it is to designate a "server" system that has no lag and a client system that continuously sends its controller state but doesn't apply its own input to its simulation immediately, the server applies the inputs as they arrive and sends back the frame number and controller state, the client game will only progress a frame when the matching controller state arrives so the client's simulation lags behind the server's and the button presses on the client system would be delayed as much as one roundtrip takes. Would you want to play Contra where any button you press doesn't register until a few moments later and the same goes for releasing the buttons?

And that's when you assume the emulation is completely deterministic, on TASVideos there are many cases where an emulation desyncs on playback (they record the controller state for each frame and then play it back) which means the game doesn't behave the same when given the same input, in online play that would be catastrophic.

Quote from: KDR_11k

Quote from: Mr.

I really would of liked if the Virtual Console games you own are games in your house. You can play them multiplayer online, now that would of BEEN AWESOME. i don't think it would of been that hard to do either.

It's very hard, you got a game that's designed to have controller lag that's way less than one frame and you try to play it over the internet with latencies in the double or triple digit milliseconds? Online games use prediction to avoid lag and some are client-server so that one system runs the simulation and sends the results to the other systems, with a VC game none of that would work. You have a gamestate that's affected by button presses and you have no idea how it'll behave next frame, you have to make sure both systems' gamestates remain in sync so they must both receive the exact same inputs on the exact same frames which just doesn't work well when you got latencies involved. A way to do it is to designate a "server" system that has no lag and a client system that continuously sends its controller state but doesn't apply its own input to its simulation immediately, the server applies the inputs as they arrive and sends back the frame number and controller state, the client game will only progress a frame when the matching controller state arrives so the client's simulation lags behind the server's and the button presses on the client system would be delayed as much as one roundtrip takes. Would you want to play Contra where any button you press doesn't register until a few moments later and the same goes for releasing the buttons?

And that's when you assume the emulation is completely deterministic, on TASVideos there are many cases where an emulation desyncs on playback (they record the controller state for each frame and then play it back) which means the game doesn't behave the same when given the same input, in online play that would be catastrophic.

Emulators have had online play for about a decade.  Sure, the ones that only synchronize keypresses get desynchronized, but the good ones will copy the relevant memory changes so that desynchronization is not a problem.  Remember Xband?  This wouldn't have been possible if lag -- and we're talking about slow-rate modems! -- was too much to overcome.  Some individuals even used this technique to play GameCube games online.  And doesn't XBLA have a pretty good record doing this very thing?

Are any classic ports XBLA full-on emulation? I was under the impression that every XBLA game had to be reprogrammed to meet minimum HD requirements, so they could tweak multiplayer code while they're at it. But I don't own a 360, so I could be wrong.

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Animal Crossing: City Folk Box Art

Genre Simulation
Developer Nintendo
Players1 - 4
Online1 - 4
Controllers

Worldwide Releases

na: Animal Crossing: City Folk
Release Nov 16, 2008
PublisherNintendo
RatingEveryone
jpn: Machi e Ikouyo Doubutsu no Mori
Release Nov 20, 2008
PublisherNintendo
RatingAll Ages
eu: Animal Crossing: Let's Go to the City
Release Dec 05, 2008
PublisherNintendo
Rating3+
aus: Animal Crossing: Let's Go to the City
Release Dec 04, 2008
PublisherNintendo
RatingGeneral
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