Readers, it probably won’t surprise you too much to learn that I adore the Nintendo series Animal Crossing. While I can hardly claim to be a veteran, since I’ve only played the DS versions of Wild World and New Leaf, these two games alone have been enough to develop a certain fondness for the series which can really only be described as ‘Peacefully Coexisting With Animals: The Video Game”. However, I just can’t bring myself to love the new mobile release of Pocket Camp as much as so many other people do, and I’ll try to explain exactly why this is.

My biggest problem is that there just isn’t the soul and the charm that radiates off the main series games. Sure, Pocket Camp has got the aesthetics down to a tee. Everything looks perfect, from the idyllic forest surroundings to the quirky and adorable animal characters. The sound is equally great, with the music and ‘voices’ being exactly what you’d expect from an Animal Crossing game. But for me this is where the similarity unfortunately ends. In the main series it genuinely feels like you can progress however you want – you can choose to donate everything you ever find to the museum, fish all day every day until you find that dorado, focus entirely on improving your own house while ignoring the town as a whole. Of course there’s overarching objectives, like how in New Leaf you’re meant to be developing the town you accidentally become mayor of, but these never put pressure on you – you’re free to do it completely at your own pace.

wild world
Wild World – Also known as “How To Do Animal Crossing Properly”

Pocket Camp doesn’t do this for me. All of the aspects you’d expect from Animal Crossing are there, technically, but there’s little point in doing them apart from enticing villagers to your camp. Perhaps it is the lack of museum that makes it lose that ‘collecting’ factor but there’s no joy in fishing and bug catching, it’s all purely practical. Plus the fact that you can lose villagers if you don’t recruit them in time puts a weird stress over the whole thing that’s just not present in any other Animal Crossing game. Perhaps the problem is that it’s not different enough from the main series to justify this stress. Pokémon Go (an inevitable comparison) justified the added stress of losing Pokémon by being a completely new experience. Pocket Camp feels like watered-down Animal Crossing, not something new or exciting.

Who knows, maybe I’m just disappointed that we’ve heard nothing about Animal Crossing on the Switch. When I discussed my problems with my brother (who loves the game), he said that it’s a reminiscing experience for older fans and a glimpse into the wonderful world for new ones. Unfortunately, I don’t believe that Pocket Camp succeeds in either regard. Feel free to ignore this post when I sink fifty hours into it, though.


8 thoughts on “Why I’m Disappointed in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp

    1. Hey there! Thanks for getting in contact. The main Animal Crossing series is great and I’d thoroughly recommend it if you’re looking for a calm and casual game to relax you. Pocket Camp is fun enough for a mobile game but I don’t believe it represents Animal Crossing as a series well. Hope this helps!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah my pleasure! I try to reach out to everyone who starts following if I can, to build a relationship so they’re not just a number. As for Animal Crossing, I was really enticed by the original. I’m a Nintendo fan and I also love farming sims like Harvest Moon and Rune Factory so that’s the relation I think of when I see Animal Crossing. Pocket Camp was easier to pass on since I rarely play mobile games. What’s a good place to start if I’ve never played a single Animal Crossing game? The first one?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Sounds good to me, I’ll make sure to check out your site! I’ve only played the DS games, but there’s a couple on Gamecube too if you wanted to have a look at those. As for the DS versions, Wild World is probably a more fun game but New Leaf (on the 3DS) plays better, it’s more polished at the cost of being a little more repetitive. If you’re ok with playing an older-feeling game then I’d definitely recommend Wild World, but New Leaf is great too!

        Liked by 1 person

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