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An interview with Aya Kyogoku, director for Animal Crossing: New Horizons, with French news outlet 20 Minutes has recently made the rounds despite being a month old. This is due in part to Twitter user @jmac857 translating portions of the interview and releasing it to various outlets. Not having to rely on Google Translate, we now have a better look at the approach for creating Animal Crossing: New Horizons and juggling nostalgia of longtime fans while appealing to new fans.

Translated for and posted by GoNintendo

“With each development [cycle], we always want to ensure that the most recent entry is the best game possible. It was the case with New Leaf and still is with New Horizons. But everyone, in particular the fans, have their favorite game [in the series]. I believe it’s part of the charm of having long running franchises like Animal Crossing – players talk about the differences, the evolution from one game to another. We don’t want to ruin the memories and affection they have for the older games – we always keep that in mind, we actually want them to keep the memories they have experienced during their lives in the different Animal Crossing games, as well of the events of their lives that they had traversed at the time they were playing.”

Translated for and posted by Nintendo Everything:

“Players are free to play Animal Crossing the way they want to, so I think the spirit [of the series] would be defined differently depending on each player. Though one thing is for sure – we seek to make Animal Crossing a sort of common language, a starting point for communication between a large variety of people. I’m not only talking about the online aspects of the game or social media communication, but also in the sense that people who love building their islands, decorating their houses, and talking to the villagers also like to talk about this virtual world and what they do in their own lives. We can say how we live in Animal Crossing is also a part of the life and world of each player.”

Thank you @jmac857 for unearthing and translating parts of this interview for fans who aren’t savvy in French!


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Written by Jennifer Burch

Illustrator, designer, writer and big Nintendo geek, you can find Jennifer with an N3DS within reach 24/7. As the oldest of three, she has survived many Mario Party, Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart sessions intact in addition to getting her brothers hooked on some really weird games. (Cubivore anyone?)