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Game essentials: Animal Crossing

We take a closer look at the App Store’s must-play games.

Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp

Decorate your dream campsite!

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In the wholesome haven of Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, it’s kindness that makes the world go around.

Sure, you can do odd jobs and sell items you’ve picked up, fished, harvested or mined to earn currency. And by completing tasks, you get Leaf Tickets, which can be spent on rare furniture. Later, with the right materials, you can craft items to decorate your camp.

But this is really a game about being nice to others: fulfilling requests, retrieving lost items or simply stopping for a quick chat.

Develop relationships as you build your camp.

While your job is to build up your camp from scratch, gradually expanding and developing it with new amenities, that’s something you can’t really achieve on your own. So you’ll want to make friends with the various walking, talking animals you’ll find in the areas around the central campsite.

You’ll win them over by doing favours – some will be after bugs, others will want fruit and sometimes they’ll just want to share the latest gossip. In turn they’ll help you out, handing over gifts when you next see them, or even leaving balloons filled with goodies on the map screen.

Once you’ve got to know them well enough, you can invite them to your camp. However, before they’ll come over you’ll need to cater to their individual furniture preferences.

Meeting their idea of perfect feng shui takes a bit of time, but like all good friendships it’s worth the effort – once they’ve decided to stay, they add a bit of colour and character to the place.

There’s no shortage of new friends to meet – the cast is huge.

Besides, once master builder Cyrus has finished his handiwork, you can automatically install your guest’s favourite items without having to lift a finger, and invite them to your camp. And if you don’t much care for their tastes, you can instantly revert to your previous layout and they won’t complain.

You’ll get human visitors, too, with other online players visiting your world in their camper vans. Like you, they’ll have a market box, with items for sale – it’s worth shopping around for any rare fish, bugs or even shells you might find – and they, too, will have a campsite you can visit.

Here, you can give them kudos – Pocket Camp’s equivalent of a social media like or thumbs-up. It’s a virtual pat on the back that doesn’t really benefit you beyond helping towards the odd daily target or long-term stretch goal, but it makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside all the same.

Whether you’re waiting for Cyrus to finish hammering and sawing or for ocean stocks to replenish during a fishing tournament, there are dozens of other activities to try. Your camp’s garden will need watering, and you can try a bit of cross-pollination to get rare flowers.

You can visit the market to check out fresh fashions and furniture, or try your luck with a special fortune cookie for the chance to obtain exclusive items.

And if you’ve got any duplicates, you can always visit seafaring trader Gulliver, who’ll turn your unwanted trash into delicious treasure – he’ll hand over tasty snacks which prove to be the quickest way to an animal’s heart.

The world of Animal Crossing is never short of things to do.

Meanwhile, Nintendo keeps adding new features to make your world even brighter and happier. A brand new cabin lets you host cosy get-togethers for your favourite guests, while giving you somewhere else to put all your stuff once your camp has no more room.

And regular themed events encourage you to check back in on your animal friends. Even when things are quieter, simply pottering about has rarely felt so rewarding.

Whether you settle into a daily routine or check in occasionally, you’re always guaranteed a warm welcome from Pocket Camp’s charming critters.

    Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp

    Decorate your dream campsite!

    VIEW