Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Animal Crossing: New Leaf ~Leaf 1~ Moving In!

Hello, everyone!

As you may remember, when I outlined the year's plans for the blog, I noted that the previous system for discussing video games (that is, to write a series of posts for every game I would be discussing) would now only be reserved for specific types of games. I'd already gone over the reasons why, but the old system has yet to resurface (unless you count my Year of Kirby feature).

Welp, now I'm ready to introduce the first game to undergo the previous posting system, which is Animal Crossing: New Leaf! The latest in the Animal Crossing series arrived last week for 3DS, and I''ve once again found myself addicted into its life-simulator throes. I'd already decided long ago that New Leaf, what with it's 24/7 progress of time PLUS the ample amount of new content, would be perfectly suited to reviving the ol' thing.

To make the experience even sweeter, the game features a camera system that saves snapshots onto the SD card, which means you will be able to visually experience my shenanigans as the town mayor! I didn't quite figure out how to use it until my character was searching for a home, so I'll be using official screenshots from other sites until then. If forced to, I may have to use images with Japanese text. Please understand.

Yeah, let's do it!

A new town, a new life. The life of Woody, as I have dubbed my character, is shrouded in mystery. Who is he? Where is he from? Such answers will never be shared with me, for they are not important. All I am to know is that he is headed for the town I have named Hocotate (from the Pikmin series of games), to start a new life filled with new people and experiences. As the controller of Woody and a long-time player of Animal Crossing, I am looking forward to witnessing how his journey unfolds. 

Ah, so the game begins on a train just like the origi-OH SWEET JESUS CHRIST NOT YOU AGAIN

For those unfamiliar,  this is the Rover the Cat. Now, while I happen to love cats, this guy's rubbed just about Animal Crossing player the wrong way. Ever since the dawn of time (that is, 2002), Rover frequents the interiors of public transportation vehicles to help introduce the realm of Animal Crossing to the game. The problem? He's always there. Every time you visit another friend's town via Memory Card? He's there. Every time you ride a taxi cab? He's there. Every time you start a new game? He's there, with the same exact dialogue. Every time. He will not let you go.

Alas, not even a minute into the game and, much like its predecessors, I've come across the first conspiracy of New Leaf: Why is Rover still stalking us on the bus eleven years later? The guy even mentions "I feel like I've been doing this since 2002!" Sneaky douche.

In any case, I quickly make my escape into the train station and step into the fresh air of Hocotate. While I plan to stick around and smell the flowers, immediately I am ambushed with vocal cries by my new animal friends. The yellow Shih Tzu pictured above introduced herself as Isabelle and informed Woody with some rather overwhelming news: he was to be Hocotate's newest mayor!

While I knew beforehand, my avatar wasn't so lucky. I can only watch as he squirms in confusion, wondering why these furry creatures were establishing him as their new ruler. All protests he raised were tossed aside with Isabelle's gleeful certainty, who revealed that she was the town secretary and would assist me in all the ordinaces I would establish. Before that, though, I would have to make a visit to Tom Nook, the series mafia boss salesman, to purchase a new home.

Screw you, lady! While there's no escaping my new job, I figure I'll take things at my own pace, so I decide to explore the town a little. After some beachcombing, I found that directly to the right of Town hall rested a building lavishly decorated with the color pink, adorned with the name "Re-Tail". Intrigued, I made my way inside.

Why, if it isn't one of Tom Nook's nephews! Before you ask, no, his eyes aren't lacking pupils. His family just has the innate habit of closing their eyes in affirmation. After doing business with the lovely alpaca on the right, he revealed to me the existence of Nookling Junction, home of all the Cool Shit I Can Buy©. After promising to do so as soon as I hit up Main Street, Ms. Reese introduced herself.

A new business to Animal Crossing, Re-Tail works as a bit of a dumping ground for Hocotate's denizens. Got too much crap lying around? Just sell them all to Reese and she'll take a small portion from her endless depository of cash to line your pockets. You can also put up some of your stuff for sale for other residents to plop down cash for. In my heart, I knew what was the right choice.

Knowing that my beachcombing wouldn't amount to much, I had no qualms with this beautiful little piece of coral finding a new home. I can't be bothered to remember what I set the price at, but I'm sure it was a fair amount.

Eventually, an ongoing series of snores catches my attention, and I make my way over to the other end of the store, where a blue alpaca is snoozing away in his chair. As soon I approach him...


A fair enough excuse, but as the days go by, a disturbing fact is made evident: Questions immediately sprout up in my head. Who is this mysterious alpaca, and is he really the "darling" of Reese? Why is he not sleeping in a more comfortable environment? And the most damning of all: Why is he still sleeping ten days after I've bought the game? Yet another conspiracy presents itself.

Anyway, as I leave Re-Tail, I realize that I have yet to introduce myself to the villagers of Hocotate, so I decide to talk with anyone I see on the way to-whoa, is that an alligator with holes in its jaw?!? Needlessly to say, I rush over to greet him.

Establishing himself as the grumpy badass of Hocotate, Del instantly warms his way into my cold, hardened heart. He lives over yonder in a house filled with sci-fi inspired furniture. As you can see, we also wear matching shirts on our very first meeting.. Whether or not this was the key to our quickly budding friendship I cannot say for sure, but it is clear that this grump had a heart of gold. Observe.


Woody, as much as I was, was truly at a loss for words. Here he was, forced against his will to suddenly assume an authoritative political position against his will, and this one reptile not only showed genuine concern for his well-being, but excitedly informed Woody on how to take snapshots even after he had already figured it out for himself. Truly, Del is a god among alligators. I was touched to the point of tears.

As I say my farewells to Del, a hippo happens to catch my eye. Introducing herself as Bubbles, she too shares a concern that I have yet to obtain a home. Yet another Mother Theresa in this godforsaken village! Have I found another trusted companion in this village? Someone who'd stand up against the odds for me, who I could share my deepest, darkest secrets with?


Needlessly to say, my hopes were quickly dashed. At least she's amusing. Moving on...


I made my way down to the Main Street, where I made a straight beeline to Nookling Junction.

Yes, I can certainly see that.
The first thing that catches my eye is an unfamiliar one--a fortune cookie? I'm informed this will require the cost of two Play Coins--the 3DS's 'currency' for the built-in Streetpass mode--for a purchase. Contained within these Fortune Cookies is a ticket that promises a free special item. I buy one instantly.

Surprise, surprise! Tommy hands me a Fire Flower from Super Mario Bros.! I'm so stoked--a daily handout of Nintendo-themed items!

After purchasing a shovel and the panda bear plush in the corner, I make my way over to Nook's Homes. It seems the raccoon now deals in home realty, investment, refurbishing and the like. After run-ins with crazy hippos and puppies that induce slave labor, Nook is more than willing to finally construct my very own home--for a price, of course, but I know my way around the block of Nook's shifty ways. It's all about catches.

Off we go! I take the opportunity to fully acquaint myself with the land, and I decide my dwelling shall be placed in the far upper right corner of Hocotate. As there were currently no residents in that area, some privacy and breathing room from these loons would be much appreciated. Plus, a small fishing pond would make for an awesome backyard.

Nook agrees that this would be an optimal spot for a home, and magically projects a visual as to what it would look like.





what the fuck nook

I immediately dash over to Town Hall to file a complaint, as I'm forced to live in a tent DESPITE BEING THE MAYOR, but Isabelle will none of that, for it's time to hold a ceremony to commemorate my new role as mayor.

Well, I guess that won't be so bad. Time to go plant a tree!

Upon the planting of the tree, all the animals clap in jubilation. Upon closer inspection, however, the short length of their arms reveal that this is not so, as they are merely clapping on their bellies. Whether or not Woody is expressing embarassment or arousal at this strange ritual, I cannot say.

Regardless, I take the time to get to know the rest of the inhabitants. Benedict the chicken seems like a friendly sort, inheriting the village dumbass lazy personality of such lovable quacks like Dizzy the elephant. Of course, this means Benedict is capable of spouting random one-liners at a moment's notice, such as when he tells me how to write a letter. 

I'll get right on that, champ.


I also visited the home of Robin the bird. She's kinda snarky, but bearable enough. Let's just hope comments like the below snapshot aren't thrown into my direction.


Make any comments like that about me, bitch,  and I'll slam a bug net directly to your skull. 

There's also a girl pig named Gala, who I have yet to nab a great snapshot as she prefers to remain elusive. For now, she can simply be defined as "the pig that exists."

Can't say the same for Isabelle, who would take every opportunity to stalk me and randomly lecture me.. Take a look at Woody's patience wearing thin.

And when I finally pay off the loan for my new house several days later...

"Ah, home sweet home at last-GAAAAHHH!!!"

But at that point, things were finally looking up for Woody. He'd finally obtained a home, earned the Mario Hat of his dreams, and made a couple cool new friends. He's not quite sure about the whole mayor business, though, especially since Isabelle seems to be the one pulling the strings. Not to mention, will any of the conspiracies haunting the town ever be solved?

Time will tell, he decides, as he shuts the lamp off and heads to bed.

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