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Need help finding critters in Animal Crossing: New Horizons? Want to test your design ideas before adding them to the game? Here’s our list of five really useful destinations for all villagers.

If you’re new to the world of Animal Crossing, starting your new life can be a little daunting. The early stages Animal Crossing: New Horizons are thoughtfully guided, but there’s an overwhelming amount of information to absorb concerning the game’s flora and fauna, design and customisation options, inhabitants, and events.

Nintendo wants players to uncover the game’s pleasures without too much direction, and to find joy in experimentation and exploration.  Nonetheless, a neighbourly helping hand is always welcome, and fans have created some useful tools that players can use to create, test, and research their new homes.

Here are five Animal Crossing resources – both official and unofficial – that we recommend using to enhance your New Horizons experience.

Happy Island Designer

Animal Crossing: New Horizons has more options than ever when it comes to customising your home from home. A little town planning goes a long way, and Eugeneration‘s Happy Island Designer is perfect for experimenting with new island layouts. The tool lets you place homes, bridges, civic buildings, trees, and flowers. You can also experiment with terraforming by sketching rivers, paths, and different ground levels. Any maps you create can be exported as an image to work from.

Visit: Happy Island Designer

AC Patterns

AC Patterns is our top destination for creating custom and pro designs when we’re away from our Nintendo Switch. One of the most impressive features is the ability to upload your own images and transform them into patterns. Patterns can be shared online, saved locally, and turned into QR codes which you can upload into Animal Crossing: New Horizons using the Nintendo Switch Online smartphone app. Here’s our guide on how to do that.

Visit: AC Patterns


Nookpedia is a lovingly-created database that catalogues every fish and insect in the game (so far). Each creature’s entry details its seasonal availability, and a includes a hint on where it might be found. Also helpful is a filter to determine which creatures will be unavailable when the month changes. No string fish for us.

The Design section also includes user-submitted patterns. These can be transferred to the game using a code at the Able Sisters’ store.

Visit: Nookpedia

Animal Crossing Amiibo Catalog

Once you have opened the Harv’s Island or the campsite in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, you can use the game’s amiibo functionality. Animal Crossing amiibos come in two forms, figures and cards, both of which remain in plentiful supply at online retailers. The amiibo figures are based on the game’s common cast of characters, such as K.K. Slider and Tom Nook. However, the cards also include the majority of villagers featured in the game. There are five series of cards available, with each pack containing a random selection of three. The Animal Crossing Amiibo Catalog website details the villagers available in each series, making it easy to track those you have and want.

Scanned amiibos can join you for a photoshoot on Harv’s Island and also be invited to the campsite, at which point you can encourage them to become permanent residents. In-game posters of every villager you scan can also be purchased.

Visit: Animal Crossing Amiibo Catalog

Tom Nook on Twitter

With seasonal events in Animal Crossing: New Horizons now delivered by software updates, staying up to date can be tricky. However, Tom Nook is here to help. Nook took over the game’s official Twitter account in February and publishes a daily dispatch of tips, village announcements, and “Life Advice”. Much of it seems obvious, but it’s always worth checking to make sure you’re not missing out on anything important.

Visit: Tom Nook on Twitter

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