With 2019 right around the corner, we’ve polled GameSpot’s staff to find out what games they are looking forward to most in the new year. To be eligible, a game must simply have a release date currently planned for 2019. Of course, we all know nothing is set in stone; there’s always a chance some games could slip into 2020. When you’re done reading this entry, follow along with all of our other end-of-the-year coverage collected in our Best of 2018 hub.
Animal Crossing Switch was revealed during a Nintendo Direct this past September, and you might remember that the announcement followed a bait-and-switch in which Isabelle was announced as a fighter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. As much as I like playing as Isabelle in Smash now, I was deeply disappointed in the moments between the two reveals. I knew my town in New Leaf was a neglected disaster; I needed a fresh start, and Pocket Camp just didn’t do it for me.
If I had to guess, I’d say that I have over 1,000 hours logged across all the Animal Crossing games to date–and that’s a conservative estimate. My phone background is Animal Crossing (springtime for the lock screen, night sky for the home screen), my makeup bag is Animal Crossing (for some reason), and I have a Chrome extension that plays Animal Crossing music in real time (K.K. Slider songs only on Saturdays from 8 to 12 PM). Most embarrassingly, I bought a second copy of Wild World a few months after I got that game so I could borrow my brother’s DS and trade fruit with myself.
All this is to say that even though we know next to nothing about Animal Crossing on Switch, I am incredibly excited for it. But I do have actual reasons! And none of them are “I have sold my soul to Tom Nook.” I promise. Actually, it starts with an Animal Crossing game you probably haven’t thought about in a while: Happy Home Designer.
If you didn’t play Happy Home Designer on 3DS, it’s all the fun of decorating your Animal Crossing house with none of the debt, though it doesn’t have the same pull as a main Animal Crossing game. The best thing about Happy Home Designer is how it refines the process of decorating; rather than manually pushing, pulling, and rotating furniture around a room, Happy Home Designer lets you stay in one place and manipulate furniture on the touchscreen. You can highlight and move multiple pieces at once instead of, say, dragging a chair across the room so you can move a table one space to the right, for example. It’s honestly revolutionary.
I don’t know exactly how that would work on Switch, given that it only has one screen, but that screen is a touchscreen, and I have faith that Nintendo would never let me clumsily shuffle my decor around again. The point is that small tweaks to the existing Animal Crossing formula–changes that I didn’t know I wanted–are both possible and welcome, and I’m excited to see what else is added in the new game.
Like I said, we know very little about Animal Crossing on Switch except that it’s coming out sometime in 2019. But I can’t wait to jump back into the laidback, friendship-focused, chore-filled world of Animal Crossing, and I’m sure I’ll practically explode with excitement when we do learn more about it.