Beginner Basics for Animal Crossing Beginner Basics for Animal Crossing

Growing your island

Greetings, and thank you for stopping by! This is the editorial team of “GameWith,” a Japanese game information website.

So you've just gotten your very own house built in Nintendo Switch’s Animal Crossing: New Horizons. What comes next? It's time to explore some options to develop your deserted island into a flourishing town, and I’ll share with you some simple steps and tips.

Island veterans and returning players may find this article to be a great source for interesting ideas on how to make your already bustling island even more welcoming than before.

If you haven't built your own house on the island yet, check out this article to see how you can build one in a jiffy.

The home life of your dreams begins now

Building your dream house in Animal Crossing: New Horizons is an accomplishment, but it only marks the beginning of your ideal new life! After having a place to call home, you can now focus on slowly building your community.

Before your ideal life can begin in earnest, there are a few things to do first, such as tidying up some space to build essential facilities on—facilities that will contribute to future island development. Recruiting more residents will also inject more life and spice to the island. Here's how you can do all that and more.

Lavish island living: Generate that buzz

To be sure, some work on the surroundings will be needed to make the island more attractive. Follow the general sequence of events outlined below to ensure that you're headed in the right direction.

Museum musings

You've likely been collecting miles for a while in order to build your new home. While you were doing that, have you also noticed the large variety of native critters on the island? Ever wondered if there was a way you could learn more about them?
If so, good news! Tom Nook has a friend by the name of Blathers. He's a museum director who can help you to do just that. To set up a proper museum on this island, however, he's going to need some help. Talk to him when he arrives and you'll be asked to gather some fish, bugs, and fossils for the museum.

Gathering items for the museum

This is a good time to familiarize yourself with a very helpful tool for getting around with—the vaulting pole! This simple but fun item can be used to quickly leap across the many rivers cutting through the island, even if there is no bridge. Blathers will also teach you how to DIY a flimsy shovel for fossil-digging. Now you have everything you need to excavate items for the exhibit!

By now you may have noticed that basic tools for fishing or bug-catching will break after some usage. For more durable tools, use some of your hard-earned miles to obtain a set of Pretty Good Tools Recipes, which will allow you to craft better fishing rods and nets that last much longer.

Museum grand opening

Once Blathers has enough items for his exhibit, he'll open a museum on the island in earnest and display your contributions for all to enjoy. Resting in the contemplative quietness of this very well-designed museum is a great way to spend your time on this beautiful island as well.

Enhance your dream home with Nook's Cranny

Adding color and richness to your island life is simply a matter of finding a way to get what you have in mind, right? Unfortunately, the limited space in Resident Services means a limited selection of goods and products. That's why the island is going to need a new shop for its next stage of development.
Speak with Timmy about this and you'll be asked to collect 30 pieces of a few types of building materials needed to make that new shop a reality.

Wood comes from hitting trees with an axe and iron nuggets from hitting rocks with a shovel. The number of resources you can gather from one island in a day is limited, so make good use of your Nook Miles Tickets to travel to other islands for more resources.

You may have many things you want to take back home from these islands, but having too many resources can cause your pocket to become completely full, so make sure to keep an eye on it. Spend some miles on a Pocket Organization Guide to increase your pocket storage.

Got everything you've been asked to collect? Then hand the resources to Timmy to open a brand-new shop by the name of Nook's Cranny. This shop sells furniture, tools, flower seedlings, and even seeds!

Pro tip: Once in a while, the traveling merchant Saharah visits your island with a bag full of mysterious wallpapers, floorings, and rugs. Her shop is the perfect place for residents who are extremely particular about interior design.

Able Sisters: Catch up with the latest fashion trends

Once Nook's Cranny is open for business, Mabel the hedgehog will visit your island to celebrate this milestone. Soon, she'll start regularly hawking her fashion products at the plaza, with matching accessories to boot. How fancy do you want to be? The island sky's the limit!

After shopping at Mabel's pop-up store a few times, she'll start talking to you about setting up a permanent establishment. Find and reserve a good spot for her as soon as you possible!

Once available, the Able Sisters' clothing shop will be filled daily with a variety of fashionable items that far surpasses what you've ever seen in Mabel's little booth so far.

A larger town means more room for new residents

As your little island town keeps expanding, Tom Nook will inform you that three new residents have applied to live here and will be joining the island crew soon. Your new job is to help Tom Nook prepare a place for them to stay.

Making more space inside the island

Your first order of business is to find available land to reserve for home construction. This can be done by building bridges across rivers and streams to immediately open up more accessible space.
The thing is, building many bridges cost a lot of money (Bells)! Therefore, my tip for this part is to build your first bridge across the river that you vault across the most.

Receiving residents-to-be

Once the bridge is up, you'll receive some housing kits. These kits allow you to reserve a plot of land for construction.

The new residents have signed up for a package that includes a fully furnished home upon arrival, and their clear requirements must be met before the house can be built. Fret not, though! These are very reasonable demands that can be crafted or built by a single person.

You'll receive a recipe for a ladder around this time, which you should craft immediately as it gives you access to higher and lower areas, opening up even more space for you to explore.

Once everything is set up, Tom Nook will take over and manage the construction and getting the new residents settled. Let's wait and see who will be joining your island.

Lavish island living: Getting a better island evaluation

With the arrival of three new residents, your once quiet little island village will turn into a bustling town full of life and activities.
Tom Nook will upgrade both the plaza and Resident Services to better care for the needs of all residents, old and new alike. Along with this upgrade comes a new member of the staff—Isabelle!

The new-and-improved Resident Services building is no longer simply a place to go to for island or home construction needs. You can now drop by to receive great advice and support on how to make the most of your life here as well.

This once lonely, deserted island has grown into a flourishing town by your hand, and things are about to get even more exciting because the next time you talk to Tom Nook, he'll mention a thing or two about inviting popular singer K.K. Slider for a live concert!

Before that invitation can happen, however, the island needs to be completely up to scratch. It's time for the residents to work together to boost the island's evaluation and make Tom Nook's dream of a K.K. Slider concert come true!

Campsite resident recruitment

One way to boost the evaluation is to get even more residents on the island. Set up a campsite to attract visitors to the island's pristine beauty and nature, and then recruit them to be residents when they've fallen in love!
Still, patience is needed. Bear in mind that it may take a little while for the first camper and potential resident to show up on your newly crafted campsite.

So, the announcement of your first camper finally happened, and you're probably excited to see who they are, but don't let those manners slip! Exchange pleasantries and, if your guest has a positive impression of the island, you'll get a chance to offer them a permanent place to stay.

The first few potential new residents reserved spots for their new houses after consulting Tom Nook. From now on, however, you'll have to reserve a spot for a new house first, then wait for a new residential candidate to purchase it.
Always have a new plot of land reserved if you don't want to miss out on being able to immediately invite a guest you fancy.

Colorful nature enriches life

In the meantime, since it's going to take a while for a new camper to show up, why not use the time to brighten up the island with some lovely natural plant life? Work on beautifying the island by pulling out all the clumps of weeds you can find and planting colorful trees and flowers at every corner.

You can get flower seeds, shrubs, and vegetable seedlings from Leif when he drops by Nook's Cranny or visits the plaza with his pushcart. Using shrubs as hedges allows you to enjoy different flowers every season and they add color to the scenery on the island as well.

Shovels and watering cans are indispensable tools for the caring and cultivation of plants. Exchange some miles for Tool Ring: It's Essential! to get a Tool Ring. It's an essential item for a smoother way to transition between the various tools on hand.

Improving the island landscape

Greenery isn't the only thing that will improve the appearance of the island. Adding some outdoor furniture is another way to further enhance the landscape.
Thus far, you've been using your miles for recipes, Nook Miles Tickets, and other useful items. Did you know you can exchange your miles for furniture too?

A great way to advertise your island's great natural abundance and attract new residents is to place a variety of DIY furniture made with local resources all around the island. Existing residents are more than happy to share their DIY recipes with you. You can also find some interesting recipes from the message bottles that drift ashore occasionally. Another way is to shoot down the balloons floating across the island from time to time.

Other tips: Enrich your lifestyle by enriching yourself

As you work toward improving your island evaluation, it's important not to forget enjoying your life, whether it be through upgrading your house, or buying clothes or furniture of your taste. There's just one'll need quite a lot of Bells to do it all. Would any of the following perhaps be able to help you reach your money goals sooner?

Wandering explorer

Explore every nook and cranny of your island every day! This is the most basic way to earn Bells. You may earn Bells sometimes by simply hitting a rock a few times.

Also, don't immediately sell away the basic resources you've gathered on the island. The more efficient way to earn Bells from them is to craft them into furniture that will sell for a higher price. See if you can make use of the hot item of the day as well, which will be displayed on the board outside Nook's Cranny. Hot items will sell for more Bells than their usual sticker price.

Hardworking capturer

Caught a bug or dug up a fossil that has already been donated to the museum? Don't be afraid to sell them at Nook's Cranny for Bells!
More visitors will start dropping by the island the more you upgrade Resident Services. Some of these visitors will buy your extra fish or bugs at a higher price than usual. As such, you should absolutely talk to every new face you see on the island to see what they have to offer.

Orchard farmer

Those colorful fruit trees you've been planting everywhere do more than add visual variety to the island. Their fruits can be harvested and sold for Bells as well.

Fruits and coconuts obtained from other islands will sell for more Bells than fruits that are native to your island. With this in mind, you should always bring any unfamiliar fruits back while you're visiting other islands so that you can create your own orchard of fruit trees right at home that will sell for more Bells.

Dream Concert

Your little town will start attracting attention from the outside as your island evaluation gets better by the day.

The staff at the Resident Services find out that K.K. Slider is very interested in your island from a letter they receive and invite him to perform a concert. This is a concert you simply cannot afford to miss. Seeing is believing!

Final thoughts

You now have a general idea of how the island will develop after building your own house. I hope those quick pointers on earning a lot more Bells with only a little more effort will come in handy in your island life as well.

Without a doubt, living on your dream island is now more comfortable, convenient, and enriching than before. What the island will yet evolve into from this point on, however, is entirely up to you! Build according to your preferences, mold the town into the community you've always dreamed of, and take the time to enjoy the outcome to the fullest.

It may seem hard to believe, but K.K. Slider's concert is the beginning of yet another stage of development to look forward to. Now you'll be able to reform the island itself to your liking and take part in tours to islands that you've never seen before—all to be covered in future articles. Stay tuned for more!