Quick Tricks That Animal Crossing: New Horizons Is Too Chill To Tell You About

Illustration for article titled Quick Tricks That Animal Crossing: New Horizons Is Too Chill To Tell You About
Screenshot: Nintendo

Face it: Animal Crossing: New Horizons is an annoying game.

There. I said it. I’m sorry, but it’s true. Yes, you’re the de facto overlord of a private island brimming with adorable talkative animals. On paper, it’s a dream come true.


But, in reality, Nintendo’s life simulator is a maddening nightmare. Every minute spent with New Horizons is an exercise in patience. The inventory always fills up. The resources always dry up. And seriously, how many more times can you read the line “I caught a sea bass! No, wait—it’s at least a C+!” without losing your mind? (Answer: zero.)

But there are a few ways to make the game marginally less annoying. To some players, these little tricks might be no-brainers. To others, maybe not. New Horizons doesn’t exactly do a great job at explaining its various intricacies.

For instance, did you know that you can tap A to speed up crafting? Also, when it comes to covering up holes in the ground, you needn’t equip your shovel. Just press Y and your villager will kick some dirt over them. The B button, meanwhile, has two hidden uses. You can press it to speed up dialogue (New Horizons text moves at the slow cadence of island life). Or you can hold it down to run around your little cay.

Then there are the vexingly unexplained systems. Tree-planting is a big one. When it comes to growing a grove, you can’t place down roots right next to each other. But New Horizons won’t tell you this (unless I hit B too fast and skipped that text). It’ll let you place two saplings adjacently. It might take a day or two before you realize your trees aren’t growing. Then you have to uproot half of them and replant the saplings so each one has at least one spot of “free space” to grow. Kotaku’s Ethan Gach likened Animal Crossing to “work.” Worse. This is straight-up busywork.

Bug bites are also irritating, if less impactful on actual gameplay. When you get attacked by your island’s native insects—say, a horde of wasps—your face will puff up. This doesn’t prevent you from doing your Animal Crossing chores, but it does make you look kind of silly. There’s only one cure: medicine. Thing is, you don’t initially start with the recipe for it. And you can’t source it in the Resident Services tent. Rather, you can find the recipe by talking to one of your island’s starter residents while you’re suffering a bug bite. (Before learning this, my workaround was sartorial: I’d just wear the Tom Nook eye mask to cover up any inflammation.) If you’re not a gregarious member of your island’s citizenry, sorry. Good luck with those bites!


If you have any other tricks up your sleeve, do let me know. I’d like to enjoy this dream, please.

More crossed animals:


Staff Writer, Kotaku


Derek Calado

Tree Branches are infinite, you can just keep shaking the same tree and eventually more will come out, unless there is no place for them to drop, in which case you can pick up the ones you have and keep shaking for more.

Fruit trees take 3 days to regrow their fruit. I know this might seem obvious but I know a lot of people who are starting this game for the first time and are shocked by this. Also your fruit will sell for 100 bells each, foreign fruit will sell for 500 each and coconuts sell for 250 each. Remember that your fruit might be foreign to another friends island so you could always harvest and sell there for more money.

There is always 3 hornet nests on your island each day, after the 5 a.m. reset. If you want to eliminate the bug bites, go around and shake all your trees from the front with the net equip. Then when the nest lands mash the button to catch them, since your character faces them in shock anyway, you’ll have the perfect shot. Also on Nookmile islands, there is always one hornets nest, unless it is a bamboo island or one filled with fruit trees. Also fruit trees will never have bugs in them.

If you find a golden spot in the ground, when you dig it up you will get 1000 bells, if you bury and amount of money into the same hole, you will grow a money tree. It is currently unknown how much you should put in because the reward is not consistent, so only put what you feel comfortable doing.

At the end of March several fish and one bug are leaving for several months. They are as follows: Football fish, Bitterling, Sea Butterfly, Stringfish, Sturgeon, Yellow Perch, and for bugs: Emperor Butterfly. The Sturgeon can only be caught at the area in between the ocean and the river and the Stringfish can only be caught on the cliff side river after 4 pm.

If you eat a fruit you can pick up a full grown tree to put it in your pockets, very useful if you want to take from the Nookmile islands without having to grow more trees and wait. Also if you eat a fruit and hit a rock you will break it, be careful though as only 1 rock reappears per day and it is in a different place then where you smashed it.

If you are hitting a rock, the best strategy to get the most (8 items) out of it before the timer of the rock giving items runs out, is to stand diagonal from the rock, and dig two holes behind you away from the rock. Now when you hit the rock, you won’t bounce back since the holes stop you from moving, also use the shovel it is faster and more consistent on hitting the rock and not missing.

I will call it here, I have a ton more tips for Animal Crossing if anyone need them. Feel free to message me or reply to this for more detailed explanation. I know the internet is kind of a bad resource with a bunch of click bait right now saying “How to get this item.” and then the actual article says “We currently do not know how to get this item.” Good luck and stay safe.