One of our favourite game on the big screen, of course we are excited! And we can finally play together within the same copy of the game too! We have loved Animal Crossing: New Leaf and Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer, and Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival didn't disappoint either, which we like even more than Mario Party 10!
|Left: Nintendo UK Family Bloggers Pack|
Right: Animal Crossing amiibos and amiibo cards
To play the game, players will need to use Animal Crossing amiibo figures, and to play the mini-games, they will need the Animal Crossing amiibo cards as well, which are included in the basic pack so no additional purchases are required unless you want to play as other characters or have more people to play together of course.
The Board Game:
- Before they visit the "town", players are to roll for the playing order
- Players can set a time limit before the game stops, which turn the game into a kind of race. We never tested this out because we like to take our time, but I can see the benefit of this especially for kids who have a shorter attention span!
|The start of the game|
- Normally, pink tiles are good and purple tiles are bad
- Players can check what tiles they might land on before choosing a new path or rolling the dice
Aim and Terms:
Up to 4 players (single players will play against 3 computer players) are to compete against each other to collect the most Happy Points. Players will take turn to play, and once everyone has had their turn, a "day" (one round) will be over and the next begins. This will continue for a whole "month" (total number of rounds) before the game finishes.
Players can collect or lose Bells (Animal Crossing currency) and/ or Happy Points while going through the board. Collecting bells is important too as 1,000 Bells can be converted into 1 Happy Point, which will be done when the last "day" of the "month" has finished.
- When a player land on the same spot as another player, something different than normal will happen that affects both players. This can be good/ bad for both players, or good for one and bad for the other (Grrrr!)
|Left: Player gained both Bells and Happy Points Right: Player lost both Bells and Happy Points|
Generally, to move around the board, a player will roll a dice to see how far they can move, and the spot they land on will indicate what will happen to them. Once the player has landed on the spot, a short story will pop up to tell everyone what happened to the player's character, that made them gain or lose Bells and/ or Happy Points (see above images).
Some of these stories are quite funny, and occasionally you will find something amazing happening, such as collecting 90,000 Bells! That's 90 Happy Points, which will make the player ahead of the rest by miles (Abby:"That's unfair!")!
- Landing on a special character event spot (see below regarding the turnip price indicator)
- Dr. Shrunk the comedian (his jokes are so cold/ dry!) freely gives a random Move Number Card a player can use (using any cards in the game require Bells) to move a number of spots indicated by the card. He also gives a positive or negative card depending on the player's luck, which I think is to change pink/ purple tiles to purple/ pink tiles
- Katrina the fortune teller gives a good (pink at the top) or bad (purple at the top) fortune card for free, which features a number that, when rolled by any players, will give/ take Bells or Happy Points to/ from the player carrying the card
- Every player will gain extra Happy points on the Fishing Tournament "day", but which tile they land on will affect how many points they get
|Left: Players can buy special cards from Redd for 100 Bells|
- Every "month" there are 2 Double Dice Days (11th and 22nd of each month) and an Opposite Day. Players are given 2 dice to roll on Double Dice Days, and on Opposite Day, players will move backwards on the board and pink/ purple tile will have the effect of a purple/ pink tile.
- Phineas (usually an achievement badge giver in Animal Crossing series) gives Bells and/ or Happy Points out to either 1 or all players, depending on the wheel turned
|Different month have different events, especially the seasonal ones|
- Seasonal events like Thanksgiving, Halloween and Christmas (or Toy Day in Animal Crossing) happens in Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival as well. Players are generally told to collect something by landing on or passing by specific tiles.
- There is a Birthday event too, where Happy Points will be given if landed on the spot.
Special Event Tiles:On the odd days and months, special characters will visit the town and randomly change some or all of the tiles on the board to a special one (see above images). We like it that these special events spice things up on the board game, making it more interesting.
Our favourite is of course the seasonal events, so we always choose a specific month (players can choose the month they want to play in) to play on that has them. I'm not sure about Abby but my least favourite has to be Opposite Day. It took me a few wrong choices before I got the hang of it! It's still fun of course.
With special characters events, as they only last 1 "day" (although some will appear twice a month), players don't necessary get a chance to land on the special events tiles. Abby has been mumbling about not getting an opportunity to get a card, until she get it and was all happy again. However, using these cards require Bells and since it's not always necessary, we don't always use them.
|Left: Gyroids greyed out on mini map Right: Stamp Collection completed (touch screen in-game image)|
To make the board game even more fun and give the players a useful choice when they go around the board, passing by junctions, players can find a Gyroid (totem looking characters) at each corner of the board game, waiting for players to pass by and collect their stamp.
Collecting stamps are very very important in the game because players can collect a minimum of 60 Happy Points by completing the image (4 stamps), and a further 5 Happy Points each time they pass by a visited Gyroid again. Gyroids will be greyed out on the player's mini map after they have passed by them already, so that they can see which Gyroid they still need to visit.
|Joan giving out free turnips|
|Left: Stalk Market prices have crashed Right: Stalk Market prices are stable|
|Left: Buying turnips Right: Selling turnips|
To complicate things a bit further (and make the game a bit more fun and educational!), we can't forget the Turnip Stalk Market that has been featured in the other Animal Crossing games. It wasn't affecting players much in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, but it can change your winning position within a week in Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival.
Every Sunday, Joan will visit the town and sell turnips. She will give each player a lot of 10 turnips for free on the first Sunday of the month, and players are given an opportunity to buy (every Sunday) more lots of 10s from her at a set price (this changes every Sunday).
During the next 6 days (Monday to Saturday), players need to keep an eye on the tiles they land on every day, which indicates the turnip selling price for that particular tile, on that particular day. It helps if players remember the buying price, and try to sell the turnips (before Saturday when they will rot) at the highest price possible. This involves guess work of course, because the Stalk Market is always changing! But if you can sell them at a higher price, you can make a lot of money out of it, meaning lots of Happy Points.
Each price per tile is also coloured in either purple, which means the selling price is lower than the buying price, or pink, which means that the selling price is higher than the buying price. Abby was a bit confused when she tried to sell turnips that was given to her for free. She still assumed that purple is a loss and pink is profit, so we stopped the game for a bit and had a talk about when cost is 0, anything you make from it, even a penny, is a profit. I do love these educational moments, although I'm not sure whether she is as well!
I'm personally very conservative about investments like this though, after all there is a bit of gambling involved because no one knows what will happen the next day. So I always buy a small amount, especially when the buying price is over 100 Bells!
Happy Points and Happy Tickets:
|Blue player is way ahead because she gained 90,000 Bells from landing on the "grow money tree" story!|
And she has also invested in 90 turnips!
|End of the game - Bells turned into Happy Points|
|Happy Points levels amiibo characters up, and the information is stored in the amiibo figurine|
|Expressions stored inside the amiibo figurine. Can be used before rolling a dice in Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival|
(I accidentally changed Isabelle's name to Izzy. Oh well)
|Left: A mini-game unlocked Right: The full festival unlocked!|
|Some of the mini-games They vary from fast to slow place and single to multiple players|
Apart from using amiibo cards to bring in the characters, they are used to move the correspondent character as well, which I'm sure is a new but clever concept! For example, I had to keep Digby up in the air (top right image) by slapping his amiibo card on the reader at the correct time (love his expression!)
Playing mini-games will also give Happy Points.
|Left: Northern Lights Right: Star gazing night|
It's a happy game where there are nothing that scares you to make you lose money and/ or points (like, you know, Bowser that Clay isn't happy with, haha *love*), and because there is quite a bit of things each player need to do and focus on themselves, we do forget sometimes that we are competing against each other! A lot is based on luck as well, so we just enjoyed the time playing together.
When the kids want a break from the board game, they can play the mini-games, which are fun and can be challenging as well, so they can play the game for a very long time!
We are also really pleased to be able to play as the famous Isabelle (who jingles when she walks, just like in the other games) and Reese (from Animal Crossing: New Leaf)! Abby is so sweet and didn't mind me taking over Isabelle for a bit. I was focusing on growing her Happy Points so that we can unlock all the mini-games. I of course don't mind to share!
I especially like the Turnip Stalk Market in this game, although I never buy any turnips in other Animal Crossing games! It encourage kids to practise their Maths. For example, if you are given 10 turnips for free, and you buy another 10 for 80 Bells each, it brings the cost down for each turnip to 40 Bells each. And if you sell them at 178 Bells each, you'll make a fantastic profit! So I always try to encourage Abby to get some turnips, and not just focus on the colour of the stalk market price indicator.
Now that we know that we can grow the town like in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, we are loving the game even more and can't wait to play again and add more new buildings and invite animal friends to live in the town! I can definitely do with different paths as well on the game board.
Needless to say, we highly recommend Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival! It's definitely the party game we will be playing during Christmas (December will most likely be popular)!
On a side note, I finally found out that I can take really good in-game pictures using Miiverse for both top and touch screen! Aren't these pictures beautiful? I really wish I have found this out earlier!