Animal Crossing: New Horizons got here out on March 20, and the sport’s first patch went dwell six days later. Since then we’ve gotten two extra updates, bringing us to the newest one on Friday, model 1.1.3, which fastened a critical bug where balloons stopped generating after 300 of them have been popped. Three updates in about eight days is the kind of tempo that solely video games like Fortnite sustain, and never the type of factor you’d anticipate from Nintendo.
Most of the New Horizons updates have been fixes, akin to eliminating a duplication glitch and undoing a difficulty the place housing plots turned unusable. There was, nevertheless, one fast content material replace, which introduced with it the 12-day Bunny Day celebration that provides gamers an prolonged scavenger hunt, together with new cherry blossom gadgets.
For comparability’s sake, Pokémon Sword and Shield, one other current first-party Nintendo title, has only gotten two patches since its November release, although raids are set to alter periodically. And that’s for a sport that may be performed competitively, very similar to Splatoon, Smash Bros., and Mario Kart — that’s, multiplayer video games that dwell and die based mostly on assist. Animal Crossing is after all a social expertise, however what you do in your island has little bearing on what different gamers expertise in their very own video games. In different phrases, Animal Crossing is just not the kind of franchise that you just’d suppose would require fixed, ongoing assist as a “service sport.’
That’s altering, after all. By requiring an web connection simply to take part in upcoming promised seasonal occasions, and by quickly leaving out some characters that have been tied to sure mechanics, New Horizons is intent on offering an evolving expertise that you just can’t merely time-travel via. The island you get up to tomorrow is likely to be barely completely different from the one you’re taking part in on at this time. More importantly, there’s all the time one thing to sit up for.
Nintendo could also be infamously gradual to take to such industry-standard traits, but when the Japanese firm retains this up, it makes me extra enthusiastic about Animal Crossing’s potential future as a bustling, full of life sport. And whereas it will not be an anticipated technique for a title like this, it’s good, too — with New Horizons breaking sales records across the world, there’s extra incentive to verify gamers hold coming again for extra.