With Dream Suite on the horizon and likely to be available to download sometime tonight, I buckled down to finally start work on my house. I think the biggest hang-up for me is I wish I could use two different wallpapers/carpets for some of the longer rooms to use simple panels to kind of break-off sections, but unfortunately that isn’t possible which makes certain rooms in particular problematic with me trying to figure out the best theme for it.
Meanwhile, Leif was in the Plaza today.
As for the update, I’m expecting the Dream Suite to have at least two Nook Miles achievements– possibly three: One for visiting Dreams, One for uploading dreams (whether just once or multiple times*), and the third possible one is if they count how many visits your Dream Island gets.
* I will probably only upload twice guaranteed until April… Once when Dream Suite goes up and once between 6PM and 7PM tomorrow as it’s the time my island looks best. Otherwise I’ll just do so for any particularly big changes unless it does count it more than just once– if so, then I’ll be doing it daily until I hit that count and then follow with this plan with the big final update being in April as my town is set up for Cherry Blossom season.
I’m a bit nervous about visiting Dream Suites this time. With New Leaf, things were a bit less freeform so it was nice seeing how people used things differently, but I feel like so much more can be done this time with New Horizons that I think it may just make me feel even more underwhelmed with my own town.
I’m still looking forward to it, of course, and I even set up a form for people to submit dream addresses for me to visit it, but I can’t help and be nervous about it too.
But I feel like it may be a bit bittersweet. Especially when all my patterns are full already too :(
Regardless, it was time to get to work. I hoped to do before and after photos for each area, but didn’t get to it. I believe I have photos of each area already on here though so… Anyway, after like 12 hours, I finally finished my rooms… Despite all the preparations, I actually still had to juggle my storage a lot and even had to order a few items.
I wish it was better. Nothing really feels right even though I also feel kind of happy with it at the same time. I at least like it better than what I had.
Despite not feeling too great, I made sure to pop on as soon as the update finished installing shortly after 9PM EST. There was a letter from Nintendo with a gift as a thank you for updating (some really nice Fireworks wallpaper) as expected, but also a letter from Luna that included the bed you used in the Dream Suite in New Leaf.
I quickly headed to my room to sleep. I really love how the Dream Suite looks this time around and how it kind of fits the whole Tapir-Dream-Eater thing. I also love that it pulls your bed in as well.
Unfortunately, I may have been a bit too quick as the dream servers weren’t up yet/online maintenance was still ongoing… And thus, I had to wait until tomorrow to really experience the Dream Suite.
That said, it seems like there’s no Nook Miles achievements after all. Thinking about it, I guess since Dream Suite requires an online connection which now costs money, they couldn’t really have anything for it… But it could’ve still just been something like “Meet Luna” and I am surprised there’s nothing for the fireworks.
Rather than wait until later, I just wanted to get my dream up immediately. I felt bad not getting it up last night. First things first though– I had to clean up the random tree branches that are always around. Along the way though, I ended up finding a lost item and after investigating it, was pretty sure it was Mira’s.
Unfortunately, she wouldn’t be up for over three hours. Outside of being able to investigate the item to get a hint of who it belongs to (which only goes so far if you have more than one of the same personality at the same friendship level and unless you decide to only have 8 villagers, there is no way to only have one of each personality), nearly everything else about it is frustrating. You can’t get friendship points for it if someone tells you who it belongs to and if you find a lost item, you literally can not talk to anyone until you either give it to who it belongs to or are told… and I want those friendship points and already was pretty sure who it belonged to. It’s just really dumb and finding something shouldn’t remove the general chatting dialogue.
Unfortunately, despite still having about 40 items left from him, he didn’t have a single thing I needed today.
And thus, I received my Dream Address: DA-2045-8323-2479.
I then decided to visit a dream… Unfortunately, it seems there was no way to go to a Random Dream this time and as far as I could tell, Nintendo didn’t put our a Dream Address of their own so I went on Twitter to see the first one that popped up on my feed which ended up being Nook_lings’ town, Nowhere: DA-1790-5385-6731
Which honestly without any place in mind, that was kind of the perfect name for the first town I popped into.
The first things I noticed was that there was no way to get tools– while I knew my inventory would be empty, you could at least talk to Lloid and get some tools which was actually useful for some Dreams in New Leaf. This was a huge issue as I have two areas in my town that aren’t accessible without a Pole (this is intentional– I just wanted them to be like little off the path areas…).
The other is that the Kiosk shows all your designs uploaded to it versus designs you may actually be having about your town (and obviously, designs being in a kiosk in general over through Wendell).
I wonder how Wilbur felt when he woke up on his desk, but the whole thing made it a bit spooky.
I have mixed feelings on this because sometimes I may just want to go through multiple dreams at once and this is akin to waking up and having to walk out of Dream Suite and then immediately go back in… It seems odd to not ask if they want to take up now or have another dream. In general, Dream Suite is missing some features (or they are somehow less QoL this time) such as the lack of “Random dream” option, no counter when updating (you have to check the phone app for that– it’s not something I ever cared about but I know a lot of people did), no search functions in general besides needing a specific dream address, or even receiving the 5K outright for an update… You get a ticket in the mail now. I get that technically we’re in a dream world, but at the same time, if K.K. can magically give us a CD in our pockets after a concert, I don’t see how receiving bells in a Dream World is somehow off the table.
With my newfound dream knowledge, I went to work trying making sure all areas are accessible (at least that I want to be). I hope it still looks nice. I have mixed feelings on the “stepping stone” platforms.
Unfortunately, I can’t update it again today so these updates will be put in tomorrow evening.
I also ended up delivering a package from Judy to Maple, but didn’t get to screenshot it.
I stopped by someone’s town as they had the Fireworks going and I couldn’t help but be curious and maybe I also just really really really want a pink balloon… It crashed shortly after I got there, but it was still really pretty to see.
I know there’s people who time traveled and already got all the new items (or hacked them in) so I’m trying my best to be patient at least, but I just can’t get rid of that “feeling behind” feeling with this game. Especially when I know you have to do all four Firework Shows to get all the Boppers from Isabelle… I don’t play as much at night (which has also made it hard to catch Wisp) so it’s a bit discouraging.
Finally, having heard there was a new DIY, I had one last mission today– to hit a gold nugget out of a rock and pick it up. The few rocks I could do that with failed to give me a gold nugget so I took my mission to Nook Miles Islands and surprisingly, managed to do so on my second one.
This allowed me to learn how to make the King Tut mask which I sold to the Nooklings immediately after making. I know it’s cursed, I’m good. And I had no interest putting it on to trip all over the place.
Speaking of tripping though, I’m so disappointed they still let you trip with balloons and lose them. It felt so punishing and I don’t know why that was considered a good thing, especially when balloons aren’t all-time to get (In New Leaf– just from Street Pass… here, just four days in a single month of the year through a raffle). Though, they did give us a game where tools break so who knows…
I was talking to a friend about how despite some of the freedom with mechanics, something about New Horizons still feels so barebones. It feels overwhelming and empty and a lot of the charm from the previous games just doesn’t feel like it’s still here. It’s almost like they went a soft reboot route versus considering something like… New Leaf+ with aspects of the best things from all previous games (and the spin-off series– not having some of the amazing things Happy Home Designer brought still baffles me beyond words not to mention smaller side rooms and missing exterior customization options…) and I just… I don’t understand why.
The game is supposed to be relaxing, yet they force a specific pace to play at and clearly have certain ways they want/expect people to play and if you don’t play that way, it feels like an uphill battle instead of a game to let yourself unwind. Terraforming especially feels so overwhelming and as much as I enjoyed the idea in theory, in practice I don’t think I really liked it that much. I don’t regret the terraforming I did (likely because I purposely tried not to do very much– I feel if I knocked it all down like others had, I’d feel a lot differently), but I definitely didn’t have a strong vision for it and most of the ideas I did have were knocked down quickly due to various requirements and restrictions.
I also want to just bring up Azurillkirby’s twitter thread on his own feelings as I agree with a lot of it.
I especially want to highlight this part a bit:
This is what ultimately made me drop the game. In retrospect, I think the fact that the entire game is building up to you getting terraforming tools that it doesn't feel like a casual life sim anymore. It feels like an artistic canvas masquerading as a life sim.
— Azurillkirby (@Azurillkirby) July 29, 2020
Kind of like how I feel games like Smash Brothers and Pokemon have been slowly alienating more casual players for those who player more competitively, I feel AC has done similar in the creative department. I’d like to say I’m a creative person, but I’m creative in a specific realm and not free for all.
If you give all the art supplies in the world and some paper, I’m just gong to sit there. And if you give me a specific prompt, I may just make it too literal or not get beyond that specific idea.
I think for some people, that may be surprising to hear from me– I’ve often heard people say how creative I am looking at Pink Sea or the rooms I did for Happy Home Designer… But using Happy Home Designer as an example, that creativity slowly just became doing the same thing over and over and while part of that was absolutely the repetitive prompts, it was also because I wasn’t getting anything to work with.
I got a photo and a theme and maybe if I was lucky some new item, but that was it. I unlocked everything so they didn’t show me what I’d get and without seeing what I would get normally, I had no vision for what I’d want it to look like. For me, that one word prompt gave me nothing. I had nothing to go off of. It was just like “Bathroom” or “Kitchen” but what kind? What colors? What type of things would you want? What kind of baths do you like? What kind of food do you prefer to eat? For a lot of people, this isn’t an issue, but for me, I was paralyzed with indecision and no clear path on where to go.
Terraforming especially feels like that. I struggle a lot with making decisions and often ask someone else to choose, always worrying somehow what I say will be wrong. I ask my husband to look over every single thing I do because I don’t have the confidence it looks okay. It just feels like too much. I’m honestly glad I stuck to just small changes as I don’t think I would’ve ever been even somewhat satisfied with my island otherwise.
And yet I still constantly am asking myself if it’s enough. When I see how much people do with it, it makes me feel like everything I did was a waste. And it always extended a bit to designs too, but it was kind of easier to ignore that. It’s why I generally tried to not do much with custom designs, but as they add more ways to use them and have it really look like part of the game itself, it feels more out of place to not do so and that extends to terraforming too.
And in a sense, just because I get so overwhelmed and can’t really work from nothing, I don’t think I’ll ever be happy with anything I’ve done in this game.
In New Leaf, I kept the patterns to a minimum and just could focus on all my favorite items and using as many as I could to make something nice.
In New Horizons, a lot of my favorite things are gone and I don’t feel as familiar with a lot of the new stuff. I don’t know what I like or how I want to plan things because we don’t even really have everything yet.
While I think the game came out at the best time to get as many people as possible due to everything going on in the world and I’ve made some great new friends and became closer to others, I also truly feel it needed more time. So many old features shouldn’t be gone, especially ones that have been around since the very beginning. It just makes it feel weird and rushed.
I love Animal Crossing and I have an attachment to these villagers for so many years, but I’d be lying if I said I was having a lot of fun and if it wasn’t for my love of the series, I don’t think I’d still be playing. I barely play now and it’s going to make some Nook Miles a huge pain.
I keep trying, but between the pacing and where some of the focus is, it doesn’t feel like the game is still for me. I can’t make great designs myself. I can’t work from nothing. I can’t stand crafting. I can’t stand things being walled off just to make people forced to check back later (7 days before you can really do things, the Nooklings’ store not being there from the start, lowering your sell hours when built, and requiring 30 days to update no matte much), and I can’t stand how random it all feels. The prices of items also still just kill me.
I just, I wish I could understand the changes. It just doesn’t feel like a game you can play how you want anymore and customize to your own desire.
I wish it didn’t get to me so much. I’m not sure what about New Horizons is making it so much worse for me this time. I think I just wish if they wanted to go the crafting-terraforming-sandbox route, they should’ve made it another spin-off with nothing but the characters and an empty land for people to build on and share. Heck, maybe I could’ve done something with that if it was that open, but as it is now with this weird hybrid between something like Minecraft and a simulation game, I just find myself lost.
When I play AC, I want to relax a bit, but instead I’m just constantly thinking. Don’t run, don’t accidentally hit Y if you’re not hovered over an item, don’t screw up half your terraforming, don’t remove a pattern you like… Or even with bugs and fish, I have little motivation for catching things beyond the museum, but that motivation is dead when any catch could be the end of my net or fishing rod– especially when it’s my cute star net or ducky rod. Sure, I can just refurbish it each day after some use, but it’s another thing I need to constantly keep in mind in a game where when I’m fishing and catching things I’d want to zone out if anything. I can’t even save and continue easily or work on terraforming in short bursts and reset the work if I’m not happy with it. I just feel like I need to constantly be moving and that’s… the exact opposite to how AC should feel.
I decided to boot up the game late today as I wanted to update Dream Suite in the evening. Unfortunately, it was raining which kind of put a damper on things so I guess I’ll have to upload an update again tomorrow… On the bright side, I love this flag.
The Scary Painting and Ancient Statue were fake while the Basic Painting and Beautiful Statue were real. I didn’t need any of them, but kind of wanted to get the Ancient Statue.
With my tree branch gathering finished, I headed back to my house to update my Dream Address. It sucks to have to do it again tomorrow, but I’d rather have the more accessible version available even if it’s raining. At least the rain makes all the lights go on earlier.
I’m sure I’ll update again once a balloon.
Good thing I’m updating Dream Suite tonight anyway I guess. I really love all the new seasonal items. I’m a bit bummed we won’t be able to get the Grape-Harvest Basket or Moon Rug for another month though. They look really nice and I have an idea with the Grape-harvest basket that I want to see if it’s possible or not to look okay.
If there’s a Bug-off or Fishing Tourney this month though, I wonder what will happen with K.K. Slider. Will he perform on Sunday with the fireworks? Or will he just not play that weekend? Or go back to Friday?
Thinking about it, maybe I should’ve considered giving all my villagers one too…
I then went to check my mail and had forgotten entirely about the HHA ranking. To be honest, I was a bit nervous about the score as I changed my house up, but it’s actually about 40,000 Points higher.
Seeing how the Windmill moved, I figured I’d try placing the Flag somewhere as well. Considering this stool can’t actually be seated n due to how it’s placed, I thought this would look cute and fitting.
I was a little surprised that all my villagers weren’t crowded together on the plaza. Maybe that only happens if your gate is open.
Today’s entry will probably be the last one for a while. Mainly as I’m just… barely playing right now. I’m only really poking on to work on catalog stuff with friends and to talk to my villagers as I slowly try to befriend them for photos. The way I usually befriend my villagers just doesn’t seem to work as well– partially as you can’t actually ask if you can do anything for them.
It seems silly to just be making entries just to document each day so while I’ll still record that down, I think I’ll hold on posting any of it until something big actually happens.
Going into the actual day itself, Mika sent me the Star Bopper so now I have all four :D I may still pop in for each fireworks day, but at least now it’s not the end of the world if I don’t manage to.
Only the Serene Painting ended up being fake so my husband was excited to get a lot of new art. With Meg’s help, we got all three of the real ones.
I swear, these random weeds I somehow miss T__T I quickly removed it, but apparently can’t place a flower here even though weeds could be?? So I just put a transparent pattern down.
I didn’t want to hurt her feelings though so… I really wish we could play with their wardrobes. XP