5 Fresh Things We’re Loving In Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer

If you’re the kind of person who spends the majority of every sim game meticulously picking out your furniture and designing your living space, then Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer for Nintendo 3DS is for you. The latest addition to the ongoing Animal Crossing series narrows the game down to its finer, more finicky points by focusing on the decoration and design aspects of its predecessors. But it’s more than a pared down mini game; it offers plenty of improvements and additions to the series. Here are just five:

Furniture isn’t just for inside the house


While your first few projects are individual rooms, Happy Home Designer quickly graduates you to exterior-as-well-as-interior designer. When a client comes to you for a new house, you’re tasked with picking the style of the house, the roof, the walls and the door. But more importantly, you can now put furniture outside next to the trees, hedges and flowers. Anything goes: if you can dream it, you can have it.

Everything is free


No more scrimping and saving bells to buy an overpriced card sofa from Gracie. For every project you take on, a new series of items is loaded into your catalogue directly—meaning you won’t have to hunt down a hard-to-find couch to please a needy customer.

The world is yours


Ever hate it when someone new moves into town and plops their house right on top of your flower beds? Fear no more: this game lets you pick a plot of land for each new house that you design, with options ranging from beach front properties, to secluded spots in the mountains, to sketchy-looking areas right next to the train tracks. There doesn’t seem to be a limit on how many new properties you can put in one type of space, either—put everybody next to the train tracks, if that’s your thing.

amiibo compatibility


Rather than using figurines, Happy Home Designer makes use of new amiibo cards: scannable trading cards you tap on your New 3DS (or via NFC reader if you’re playing with an older 3DS) in order to read. Use them through the amiibo phone at your in-game office to make new contacts, get more clients, and, as a result, increase your furniture catalogue. There’s even a Tom Nook card, so now you can enact design-fuelled revenge for all that money he charged you last time around.

Become an urban planner


While the bulk of your projects will be designing for villagers, you also get a shot at the rest of town. Isabelle shows up with proposals for a hospital, a school, a store, and more, meaning there’s finally a practical use for all that weird medical equipment in the catalogue. You have to fulfill a few basic requirements, but otherwise you can make every project as standard or as strange as you desire. Snow cone machine inside a doctor’s office? Sure, why not!

Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer is out now on 3DS. Check out the trailer here.