Nintendo's E3 2018 press conference offered lots of exciting content for fans. It included a deep-dive into the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate character roster, showing off plenty of energetic gameplay and combos and a look at Let's Go Pokemon Pikachu and Eevee, the core Pokemon RPGs. One thing that was sorely missing from the presentation, however, is an announcement of an Animal Crossing game for Nintendo Switch.
In a new interview, Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aime responded to fan demands for Animal Crossing Switch to be released. The executive told IGN that "When we have something to announce, we will," explaining that he and the team at Nintendo are "aware" of the demand for the game and are always thinking of "opportunities to reintroduce IP to fans." This includes finding ways to introduce an IP to new fans as well as old.
One example of this line of thinking is in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, the series' mobile spin-off which allows players to run their own campsites. Players are able to complete objectives for the anthropomorphic NPCs, befriending them and decorating the campsite with decor and facilities that these characters may like. Fils-Aime alluded to the game's success, saying that "We're introducing [the franchise] to new consumers" and "that bodes well for whenever the next Animal Crossing might come."
Fils-Aime's line of thinking makes a considerable amount of sense. While Animal Crossing is a hugely popular franchise among Nintendo fans, for those who haven't owned a Nintendo games console before, they will have had no exposure to the series whatsoever. Nintendo needs only to look at Bethesda's Fallout Shelter as an example of how a franchise can find a new audience. A mobile spin-off about managing a vault, Fallout Shelter has been played more times than any other game in the Fallout franchise. The same could potentially happen for Animal Crossing for Nintendo Switch.
As for when Animal Crossing Switch may actually happen, Fils-Aime says that Nintendo isn't interested in teasing games for years. When it comes to fan favorite franchises, the company would much rather reveal information closer to the game's planned release. That's great news for those who don't want to be drip-fed information for ages, but it means that Nintendo may continue to keep its cards close to its chest for a little while yet.
Header image source: Reddit