Animal Crossing is a kid-friendly series of games that revolves around collecting items and giving them to characters in the game, in exchange for currency used to buy furniture, clothing, and home decorations. Pocket Camp marks the first time that the franchise has come to iOS and Android devices. Let's see how it compares to the console versions and to other similar games.
Charming game design: Animal Crossing has always had a very warm and fuzzy vibe; it might even serve as an antidote to gloomy weather. Gameplay revolves around being nice to people and animals, mainly by striking up conversations with them and finding things they're looking for. You can fish and collect shells at the beach, catch butterflies and beetles, buy a straw hat from a skunk, barbecue fish with a bald eagle on the beach, and have three Italian birds paint your van different colors. There's a lot of whimsy to go around, and it's perfectly safe for kids, though maybe not for vegetarians.
Game progress is saved and synced in the cloud: Your in-game currency, collection of crafting resources, and friendship statuses with the animals you meet are all saved in the cloud so that you can pick up on one device where you left off on another -- even if one is iOS and the other is Android. So you'll never have to retrace your steps or repeat activities if you play on a phone while on the go but prefer a tablet at home.
Game design is ultimately shallow: Maybe we shouldn't complain when the game is free, but when you look at developing your campsite in Pocket Camp versus the many layers of building and maintaining a farm in Stardew Valley or Harvest Moon, there's no comparison. If Pocket Camp is checkers, then the inexpensive and microtransaction-free Stardew and Harvest Moon (and the console versions of Animal Crossing) are chess. Ultimately, Pocket Camp feels like a demo for the rumored Nintendo Switch version. So while you may be tempted to pay real money for game currency to speed up certain timers, we recommend just playing through the game for a few days to see if you actually maintain a drive to keep coming back.
Can only be played in portrait mode: Pocket Camp is strictly a vertical game. If you turn your device horizontally into landscape mode, it doesn't respond. So if you want to use a case with a stand, you need the kind that lets you rotate your device into portrait mode.
Although Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp isn't the most immersive game we've played, it can be a fun time waster, if you have ten minutes to kill.
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Find furniture you like and design a campsite that suits your style!
Tents, hammocks, fireplaces, a stuffed-animal sofa...mix and match to your heart's content! Make a trendy open-air caf, or line up some microphones and guitars to create an outdoor music festival! In the mood for a little extra fun? Set up a merry-go-round and open a theme park. You can even make a pool, or fill the sky with fireworks!
Design your campsite, camper, and cabin however you want
Collect themed items from Fishing Tourneys and Garden Events that happen throughout the year
More than 1,000 pieces of furniture and 300 pieces of clothing and accessories are available to choose from, with more being added all the time
Features more than 100 animals with quirky personalities
Fulfill animal requests and watch your friendship with them grow! Once you become close enough friends, you can invite them to your campsite. The more the merrier!
Design a show-stopping campsite, invite your favorite animals, and take an in-game photo to show your friends. If your friends like what you've done, they may even give you kudos!
The great outdoors has so much to offer!
Notes: This game is free to start, with in-app purchases available. Internet connectivity is required to play Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp. Data charges may apply. May include advertising.