Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp is the newest addition to the Animal Crossing franchise and has brought the charm and gameplay to mobile devices around the globe!
The game centers around the player building up their campsite and camper with various furniture categorized under four branches: cute, cool, sporty, or natural. The same goes for the 40 different NPCs that the player can befriend by giving them gifts and talking to them. Gifts vary from bugs and fish to fruits and shells.
Players can gather these items from four different areas that contain distinct resources. For example, one is focused on fishing and collecting shells and coconuts, while another gives players a chance to hunt for bugs.
On the technical side, like many mobile games, Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp can drain your battery quickly, which hinders gameplay. To get furniture, you can either craft or buy it from the shop using Bells (one type of currency in the game, which can be earned through completing quests and leveling up friendship levels).
To craft furniture you must have the collected materials needed to generate it and enough bells to pay Cyrus and Reese (of the on-the-go mobile craft workshop, “Retail on the Road”). The downside of crafting is that it takes real-world time to build. Let’s say you want to craft a jungle gym, it can take three hours to build and the only way to speed it up is by using Leaf Tickets, which are obtainable by completing timed or stretch goals or purchasable through Tom Nook with real money.
The multiplayer aspect of the game only involves players visiting each other’s campers and campsites and giving kudos. There’s no real interaction, which is a bit disappointing.
While the game is fun for the first few days, it gets boring at an alarming rate. The constant fetch quests and time barriers to gather materials feed into this problem and make the game feel like a chore.
While other Animal Crossing games may have fetch quests, they also have a lot more variety and freedom given to the player. Chopping trees, planting plants, and other features were removed in Pocket Camp and instead items like fishing nets and honey were added (which make gameplay a bit faster). Villagers, although more are being added, lack variety (getting categorized in cute, cool, sporty, or natural), but make up for it with their personality.
Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp is a great addition to the franchise. If you enjoy fetch quests, I encourage you to play, but don’t expect a full Animal Crossing successor.