Pocket Camp’s 3rd Anniversary (why must it taunt me so), the Pocket Poll Awards, and the 4.0 Update

Disclaimer: I actually started this article November 19th! But due to various circumstances and this entry continuing to get added onto, it somehow only finished now so if some of the article sounds odd, keep in mind that it’s been written over the course of over two and a half months.

So, Pocket Camp’s 3rd Anniversary was in November. I spoke a little about it in my last Pocket Camp post with some of the new backdrops, but having played quite a bit between them using my weaknesses against me and needing so many items, I wanted to talk a bit more on how Pocket Camp has changed along with my votes for the Pocket Poll Awards.

Since the Award Ceremony went up on November 19th with the voting results, I’m going to start with that first. If you don’t want to be spoiled on the winners (if you haven’t watched by now), be sure to watch before reading below.

I at least had some hope right off the bat as three of my top favorites and three of my runner-ups were in the crowd/audience which it seemed to be choosing the winners from.

The first category was “What animal did you first become close friends with?”. In retrospect, I realized they likely meant in Pocket Camp when you choose your preferred theme. Regardless, I thought back to when I first played AC and Cookie and Peanut were there from me in the start.

I ended up picking Cookie as I always especially loved dogs and considering my favorite color, I recall really being attached to her even though I love both her and Peanut (AND COOKIE IS STILL NOT IN POCKET CAMP FOR SOME REASON T__T )

If I had realized what they were asking while voting, I would have picked Rosie as I had gone for the cute theme. She did end up being the Runner-up in the results too though which I suppose worked out. Goldie won who was actually my favorite of the starting villagers and I did almost consider going Natural first but… Cute is more me.

The next question was “Which animal resembles you the most?” and I actually just made my husband pick because my mind went entirely blank. He narrowed it down to Rudy, June, and Maple before finally settling on Maple. June may have won if her eyes weren’t blue.

Maple at least probably matches my character pretty well who I suppose is based off me anyway. The winners were Goldie, Raymond, and Marshal in that specific order which I will admit I found kind of surprising. I guess it’s a hard question to answer, but I wonder how many votes they got… I could maybe kind of see Marshal (especially as he reminds me of Gill from Harvest Moon), but the other two I can’t really place. I suppose Raymond is a go-to vote if you have heterochromia though.

Going by the votes, I don’t recall being asked why and if it’s about having something in common with the characters well… Honestly, Maple still works (for stuff we’ll get into more soon enough), but Merengue and Judy would probably be also in the running for me then.

The next question was “Which animal do you inspire to be like?” and I picked Judy. While I mostly prefer normal personality types (and that’s probably the one I’m most similar to), she’s just my entire aesthetic and I appreciate that.

I think if there was ever a cub that combined Merengue and Judy somehow, that would essentially be me. The winner order this time was Raymond, Marshal, and Whitney and I can’t say I’m surprised as all three are quite popular, even if I don’t personally care that much for them (I do like Marshal and Whitney enough, but I’ll never understand Raymond’s popularity. Good for those who like him though).

Next was “Which Animal would you most like to have lunch with?” AND THIS IS A STUPID QUESTION HOW DO YOU JUST PICK ONE. I want to have lunch with all of my favorites!

I ended up picking Merengue because she’s just who I think of first when it comes to food. I get all the Normal personalities enjoy cooking and baking, but I don’t think anyone could love doing so more than Merengue.

Still though, if I could, all 8 of my favorites would have been picked :( Raymond won again (sadly not surprised) followed by Marshal and Goldie and at this point I felt like none of my favorites would win.

Next up was “Which animal do you consider to be most reliable?”. While I would say all the Normal personalities are probably in this, I actually ended up voting for Diana.

The reason being is I just kind of think of her as the most mature one. Like the one with the most experience and could give good advice and just has this air of fancy poshness that has everything together. Maybe it’s just me.

Apollo actually won this with Goldie and Raymond in second and third respectively. Apollo is pretty cool and I guess I can kind of see it. Goldie, Raymond, and Marshal are just everywhere here.

“Which animal would you want as your roommate?” was the next question and I ended up voting for Merengue again.

This is because her room is a mixture of Cute and Sweet and Cooking and stuff and I appreciate that. Judy has a lot of my aesthetic, but her house doesn’t really work with what the rest of her gives off beyond her wallpaper and hanging stars. I don’t know why they just gave her the Pastel block furniture.

Maple was also a close runner-up (TEDDY BEARS and so cozy), but I prefer more pastels and pinks and less green and yellow.

Goldie won again (and well, with all her books, I can understand that) with Poppy and Rosie as runner-ups.

Next was “Which Animal has the best sense of humor?”

And this is going to sound strange, but I voted for Filbert.

The reason being is because when I first read his character profile in Pocket Camp, I just… laughed so hard. Out loud. I just found it so funny. “His lazy, dreamy smile is sure to win you over. And then his lazy, thoughtless comments are sure to lose you again.” I can think of people that applies to. Regardless, it was just the funniest thing to me and it still makes me laugh.

My runner-up was Teddy solely due to his Halloween costume, but since I picked a main game answer for the first question, I decided to go the Pocket Camp route for this one.

Dom ended winning first place and I think he actually would’ve been my third pick (How can you not find the super fluffy jock sheep funny?) so it was nice to see him win. Bob won second with Pietro in third.

“Which Animal do you think is the Coolest?” was the next question which I found really hard to pick from. I ended up going with Eugene as I feel like his entire persona is “cool”, but there’s really a lot of good candidates.

Raymond ended up winning… which I wish I could be surprised, but alas -_- Marshal was second (who maybe would’ve been runner-up in my list but definitely not in the first pack of candidates) followed by Apollo. Both Apollo and Marshal are absolutely cooler than Raymond though.

The final category was “Which animal do you want to cheer on?” and while I’d obviously want to cheer on all my favorites, I ended up voting for Cookie as I feel like she probably asks for the most support. Even though both her and Peanut are peppy villagers, Peanut always felt more confident to me. I don’t know. Anyway, that’s why Cookie received my vote.

Lucky actually ended up winning which is really cute and I can see why he’d need that cheering on. Marshal was second (why??) and Dom was third (again, I can get that). Honestly, I think of all the nominations, this is the one I was most happy with followed by Dom’s win. After that, I guess Goldie’s first win, but I am absolutely side-eyeing most of these.

I’m just glad Lucky didn’t trip on the stage like Goldie did at first. He’s been hurt enough.

Regardless, I have to say I’m shocked that out of a possible 9 winners with 18 runner-ups, there were only 11 different villagers chosen.

I think I only super like Dom of those (that said, I really do like Goldie and Marshal too). But I guess I’ve rarely had the same taste as most people.

The results ended with a trailer for their new AR mode which… I don’t even really use the option in Pokemon GO but it looks really cute and it seems like they can interact more than Pokemon can so I at least decided to try it, even if I won’t use it much.

But what I was most excited for is the Campsite Upgrade…

My campsite layout has been pretty close to how it’s been since early in the game’s release so the idea of more space was really exciting. Unfortunately, kind of like how I feel with terraforming— it seemed more interesting in theory than in practice.

Rather than really increasing the space, the game only made it so nearly all areas of the campsite could be used instead of a rectangle grid, which while nice, with the size of the items, I found I had little space around the area I could really use regardless. Especially due to some areas being blocked out due to events that required them to be free.

The other big thing was, rather than just having amenities, you could now remove them entirely and use the space for either more items, or new Amenity-sized items which I have conflicted feelings about. I did end up removing one to see how I like it due to how much I love one of the new Amenity-sized items (and there is literally no room in my campsite otherwise), but I feel bad not having both fountain Amenities now and I can’t decide if I like it more or not.

I would’ve preferred an actual campsite extension with maybe another amenity slot besides just opening up the placement area. I still think that’s nice and makes things a bit more flexible, but it can get crowded so fast and some of the areas you can’t place anything are really odd. I’m already finding some places I can’t actually get through now which while partially my fault, is still kind of discouraging.

Honestly, what really gets me (both with this and New Horizons) is these are essentially big options to increase customization, but for some reason, I feel more stilted and overwhelmed than ever than particularly inspired. This is partially due to rules and sizes of things that just make it really hard to work with.

With that out of the way though, it’s time to talk about some of the Anniversary Events, how Pocket Camp has changed since I last played it, and just what I really am hoping for from it still along with where my problems still lie.

The biggest change is that there’s no longer three different flower types for Gardening events. There’s one for the first two critters you need to collect and then one for the second set of critters. At first, I was kind of concerned about how this would balance out, but with the increased spawn and capture rates, it actually worked out really great. I managed to complete the main bulk of the event rather quickly including the Hard Tasks… But despite that, I didn’t actually finish the special Flower goals for planting and harvesting enough of them. I also don’t think it would’ve been possible if it wasn’t for so many people on my friend’s list. The task is still really rough if you don’t have many, if any, people who play.

The timing just continues to cut way too close otherwise. And I will say that’s where Pocket Camp still has its biggest issue: It wants you to play nearly constantly. You can’t take your time. You can’t pace yourself. You need to play on its schedule or you may end up missing out.

And even if you manage to pull off a few events (or maybe just one or two), you won’t necessarily manage to earn enough of whatever the item of the month is to earn the special monthly thing (And as a note, even if you were thinking about paying for some, you won’t earn enough just from that and could still end up short if it’s late enough in the month). It’s odd how they could take a series that is supposed to be relaxing and find the way to make it stressful and a chore.

It just kind of kills me because there’s so many neat things in Pocket Camp and then it just has some awful mechanics. Or like everything has a catch. For example, there’s a gifting system now, but it only lets you gift specifically wrapped gifts that look similar in shape to the ones in Pokemon GO.

Most of the different types of gifts you can get are through having a Camp Helper which requires a subscription. Otherwise, you can only get a limited amount through the occasional log in bonus (usually with very limited items), possibly one of the random campaigns we get, or recently through the Gulliver Islands (and just one of the more basic ones). You can only have 5 gifts pending at once, you can only send out one per day, and some gifts have a minimum of gifts you need to have sent already anywhere from 5-35. I wish I was kidding. Everything about this is just… so incredibly convoluted.

I’m sure part of it is is because some of them can give Fortune Cookies, but it’s just… frustrating and I’m constantly paranoid I won’t have as good a gift to send back to someone that they send me.

I do think Pocket Camp is doing a good job with Quality of Life features, but they still are making no attempt to fixing some of the core issues like how much time the game requires and the fact that it’s literally pay to win in some ways.

Heck, sometimes I just go into the previews just to look at items I know I’ll never have the Leaf Tickets for because they’re so pretty.

Of course, I couldn’t resist some of the new items which quickly took away my Leaf Ticket savings…

Kind of tempted to get the Brown Boots too. Would love the other dress as well, but that’s unlikely.

I think what really gets me is just I feel like Pocket Camp could truly be a lot of fun and good, but it goes for a lot of cheap money-grabbing tactics and it’s so disheartening.

There’s so much more focus on paid stuff too between the amount of Fortune Cookies, the constant mention of things that cost Leaf Tickets (Lottie’s “help”, more HHA Design tickets, the Golden Fishing Rod, the better honey/nets, speeding up literally everything, more Mining chances, etc.), the focus/highlight on the Fortune Cookie Memories*… It just goes and on.

* It kills me there’s no record of the regular memories/cutscenes you can get. This has always bothered me, but after losing out on the newest Valentine’s Day cutscene due to a glitch and thus, not getting screenshots of my character and Judy having a tea party, I’m especially heart broken from it.

Pocket Camp had a lot of promise. In a sense, it still does, but I don’t feel like they care about changing anything to fit more into the franchise it’s inspired from.