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I Restarted Animal Crossing New Horizons and Went on an Epic Worldbuilding Binge (part two)


Lorekitten

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This series still contains DuckTales reboot spoilers, and this installment contains a brief mention of fantasy racism.

Spoiler

Just in the interest of full disclosure: do NOT expect an ACNH article on a regular schedule. Once I get out of the start-of-game tutorial, I'm not as likely to have consistent updates, and with June being pretty much the official video game news month, you can probably expect I'll have no shortage of other things to talk about.

I'm now at the point where Timmy and Tommy want me to help them build a shop to spread the joys of capitalism to this accursed land. And as any ACNH player knows, the hardest part of building Nook's Cranny is gathering the thirty iron nuggets necessary. Kody was a bro and gave me five of them, and Cherry gave me a stone axe, which honestly was the sort of 'gift' I'd expect from the Jock villager and not the Sisterly, but I guess she knows plants pretty well, even if sometimes she decides to maim them in the interest of land development.

While originally I'd planned on having Cherry live on the island in the middle of my island, I've decided that it's the best location for Nook's Cranny, since it's neutral ground. Once I get the three villager houses placed and get more of a bead on who lives where and what sorts of cultures have sprung up on the island, the 'storyline' (which I am entirely making up in my head) will get a heck of a lot more interesting.

Blathers has set up shop on the island, which means I have my shovel and vaulting pole now and can explore more territory. And hoo boy, there are DRAGON BONES under this island! (You can't tell me dinosaurs weren't dragons in their day. They're gigantic, magnificent reptiles from a forgotten age. What else would they be?) I wonder if Black Cherry knows her father's necromancy spell, because summoning a dragon ghost would be... okay, it would be an unmitigated disaster for all involved, including possibly the dragon, but it still SOUNDS cool.

Now I'm reminded of that scene in Percy Jackson where a villain tries to sow dragon's teeth to raise an army by stealing 'dinosaur' teeth from a museum. And accidentally sows sabre-toothed tiger teeth instead. Hilarity ensues.

We also encountered Gulliver for the first time, which leads to some... interesting questions about the nature of Koinonia. A random castaway or two is one thing, but the same castaway appearing multiple times suggests some sort of curse... as if no one can escape this island forever. Is this a New Wirral situation like in Cassette Beasts, where a bunch of people from different timelines just show up here for whatever reason and they can't leave? Is that the spell that Black Cherry is trying to find a way to break?

Speaking of Cherry, my villagers now officially have houses! Sparsely decorated houses, but still houses! Cherry's house has a brightly colored wooden-block table that looks like it belongs in a kid's room for some reason, so I gave her a pink diner table in hopes of her having at least something closer to her sensitivities. She gave me a basketball tank in return, which I gave to Kody, who gave me a red and white striped tank. Um, thanks, but Lena prefers darker striped sweaters; I wonder when we'll get the Able Sisters on this island?

---

So after building Nook's Cranny, I finally reached the point where I can place the next three housing plots, and since the last time I did this particular quest I was overwhelmed by how much furniture I needed to craft to get the plots ready, I decided to break it down into small chunks and focus on one house at a time. I'm also going to do what I did the last time and take notes on what furniture I need to craft and what resources I need to farm to get there. I've also decided on where I'm going to move Cherry to once I get that option; I've got a nice spot up in the mountains for our Sark, and once we can get her house moved I can start figuring out what furniture to place in her yard. I'm thinking it's gotta involve a campfire and some pots.

Building all the furniture requires harvesting a lot of wood, which makes this as good a place as any to tell anyone who wants to harvest wood without risking getting stung by wasps that for some reason, fruit trees never have wasps' nests in them. From an ecological standpoint, this makes no sense because I'm pretty sure wasps love fruit, but I figure that's probably just another quirk of Koinonia's magical plant life and I'll leave it at that. But anyway, if you want to harvest wood without having to deal with wasp attacks, plant an orchard and harvest from that. (Wasps also never appear in money trees either. Cue paper wasp joke.)

Since there's a lot of furniture in ACNH that doesn't really fit a 'Redwall-core' theme but is still pretty neat anyway, I'm going to cheat and use that inside Lena's house; she's from another world and she's magic, she's allowed her creature comforts. The first few items I happened upon included an ironing set and a clothes-drying rack, so I guess Lena's working as a laundry duck to make a few extra bells as she tries to survive in this weird place. But I also found a writing desk at Nook's Cranny for her to work on her poetry, so that should be good for her mental stability in this stressful situation. She also has a pet Atlas moth in her room -- not tarantula levels of Lena vibes, but it works. And of course I'm plastering her walls with album covers because she has punk rock posters on the walls of her bunker in the season one finale and it's what she'd do here as well.

I'm gradually giving my villagers more and more furniture that fit their vibes better, something I didn't really do in my first ACNH playthrough, and I recently learned that you're not guaranteed to get something back from a villager if you give them something. Which is reasonable; no one is obligated to just carry around bits of random furniture to gift to people on the off chance that they get a surprise gift to reciprocate, but this happening to me for the first time kind of jarred me because I didn't expect it. Oh well. At least that piano bench should look more Cherry-like than all that kids-toy furniture she has going on.

As to where I got the piano bench... Jolly Redd has moved in on the island! Well, not so much 'moved in' as 'sailed his boat onto a secret beach because his crazy ex-partner Tom Nook has threatened to shoot him on sight if he so much as sets paw on his island'... and when I say ex-partner, yes, that is intentionally vague. Yes, it's strongly hinted at that Redd and Nook were business partners at one time, but Redd was a crook and now Nook won't do business with any foxes at all anymore... which is pretty racist when you think about it. And yes, the internet fandom has collectively headcanoned that 'ex-partner' has romantic connotations with these two. I will neither confirm nor deny those allegations at this time, but suffice to say that Nook has a burning hatred for this fox and if you ask him why... well, you shouldn't. Let's put it that way. He is determined to turn Redd into a rug and sell him in the shop at full price.

Redd, however, takes an immediate liking to Lena, calling her 'cousin.' Lena is immediately skeptical, because she isn't entirely trusting of any branch of the de Spell family tree -- and if you know your kitsune lore, which you probably do, they have a habit of shapeshifting to intermarry with humans and possibly other species of furry in worlds that have them. So it's not unreasonable to believe that a de Spell may well have carried on a love affair with one of Redd's parents (Uncle Poe, you have some explaining to do). As it turns out, and this is another ACNH fan theory, Redd is actually running a youkai rehoming project by selling haunted statues in with his usual art fakes, and Lena isn't sure how she feels about it. She does pick up a rather large winged statue at a rather large discount, as well as a couple of gifts for her current island residents because they deserve the world. (Kody's is a wrestler figure with a green mask because it's absolutely what he would be interested in.)

...good gravy, does that mean Lena and Tom Nook were almost related?!?! Lena better not tell Nook that Redd's her cousin, because that's not exactly going to go over well. Nook trusts her enough to give her interest-free loans at the cost of occasionally exploiting her labor; that's gotta be worth something, right? Riiiiiiiight? Not that Lena would be keen on having Nook as an in-law herself...

Anyway. By the time we finish setting up all three housing plots, two of them are already sold, and the third plot gets sold shortly after. The first plot goes to Stu, a Lazy bull villager who quite frankly looks suspiciously similar to Taurus Bulba from St. Canard and I can't possibly unsee it. Considering the events of Let's Get Dangerous and the whole interdimensional wormhole thing... yeah, this is pretty sus, ngl. Gosalyn never mentioned Taurus having any kids, so maybe this is the classic nephew situation that so many Disney characters get... kind of weird, really, that Lena would keep running into relatives of people that know people she knows. Of course, if this really is a Cassette Beasts sort of situation, they might not even be from her timeline at all.

Still, running into the nephew of a guy who was involved with a literal reality-altering mechanism that could potentially get them all home would be useful, except that 1. Taurus Bulba didn't actually invent the RAMrod and 2. a Lazy villager wouldn't know anything worth knowing about how to build one anyway. So he's probably just a rich heir who's got enough inheritance money that he can afford to do absolutely nothing, and somehow he wound up on the Isle of the Damned. Who wants to bet Uncle Taurus chucked him through a wormhole to get rid of him like he did with Waddlemeyer?

Plot two is Flora, a Peppy 'ostrich' villager who looks more like a flamingo to me. (First chance I get, I wanna set up pink flamingo decorations all over her yard.) Ironically, she's got the house farthest from the beach, which I definitely plan on changing; there's a certain segment of beach space just south of Resident Services that I think would be perfect for her. I don't yet know what direction I want her character to go in, but the 'pink flamingo' vibe reminded me of the Everglades and those tacky plastic decorations you see all over the place in the United States.

Plot number three goes to Mitzi, a Normal cat villager who's absolutely freaking adorable. (My mom would disagree, as she has PTSD from a Siamese cat ripping her legs up one time when me and my siblings were children. True story.) While I don't know much about the Monster Hunter franchise, something about Mitzi screams Palico to me. Somehow I'm not sure if she'll get on well with, you know, the literal bugbear.

Speaking of which, I managed to get Kody a stink bug for a request, and he gave Lena a blue and black track jacket that... doesn't look that bad on her, honestly. Admittedly it looks more like something Dewey might wear, but Lena's sorceress form has blue highlights, so it works? Her default outfit came with white denim pants that fit her fairly well (considering she, um, only wears pants with her pajamas, and given that she's known to have nightmares, there's probably a very good reason for that), and she looks nice in this outfit, though I'd still like to eventually get her something more her style.

A bunch of swimming and diving later, and I finally get my first scallop for Pascal the otter (and a second one for the museum). He gifts Lena with a Mermaid Bed recipe, which would be nice if I could find a pearl once in a while. I don't think the mermaid furniture really fits the Redwall-core theme I originally wanted for this island, but that's kind of evolving into something else entirely, so who even knows? I guess I can use it on Flora's secret beachside retreat...

Also, Lena accidentally had a run-in with a scorpion, which for some reason completely ignored her. I fled the area, swapped to my trusty net, then headed back only to discover the scorpion was gone. Maybe... Lena stepped on it? Better clean the venom off your shoes, girl, you're stronger than Magica wants you to believe. Not that we didn't all already know that.

---

As I continue progression on Koinonia, Lena gathers more furniture, including album covers for her wall, a skull-print carpet from Nook's Cranny, and an anatomical study model because it looks gruesome and she loves it. She also plucks up a new pet octopus from diving (but keeps her Atlas moth as well because a pet isn't just for Christmas, it's for life) and hires a garden gnome to help her with the laundromat thing she's got going on to pay the bills while she writes her poetry and runs all of Nook's errands for him.

I'm slowly collecting more DIY projects, and today's haul was pretty slick. Kody gave us the recipe for a honeycomb floor, which fits a literal bugbear in more ways than one, and a bottle on the beach from Raymond of all people (yes, the one with the eyes) instructs us on how to build a decoy duck. I think Lena is going to be interested in this one, although if Raymond ever shows up on Koinonia, things might get awkward fast. Like, is he a Palico, too? Why does he hunt ducks?

In addition, Kody gave Lena a black denim jacket that looks a lot more suitable on her than anything she's previously worn.

Now that we're getting more items available to us via DIY and other means, it's time to start our first build on the island, not counting Cherry's temporary yard setup because that's going to be entirely revamped once we move her up to the mountains. There's this one area up north that's high up but doesn't have enough space on it to justify planting a villager up there, so that's going to be the setting of our stone circle. And by 'stone circle,' I mean eight Stone Stools placed in a ring because while more dedicated Animal Crossing players will actively clutter their islands to force their rocks to respawn into a very specific pattern, Lena doesn't have nearly enough patience to do that and in fact feels like it's kind of stupid when you can easily craft a Stone Stool out of three stones each and just use that. Also, there are only ever six rocks on any ACNH island ever, and this way I get to use eight of them and can easily move them whenever I want, to wherever I want. I can even put other objects on top of them! You can't do that with the natural rocks.

You'll note that I said 'start our first build on the island,' because I'm not planning on leaving that as just eight Stone Stools in a circle. I just don't yet know what else is going to be in this area. It's not going to be the Valiant Statue that Lena bought from Cousin Redd, because that proved worthy of a place in Blathers' gallery where everyone can see it. I suppose the next time Redd pays a visit, Lena will try to hit him up for something else and see if she gets the genuine article this time too... assuming daddy Poe hasn't taught him the art of the hustle long ago. (That might actually explain a lot. We only got like three minutes of Poe in the cartoon, but he's definitely big on exploiting peasants.)

Stu has gifted Lena with a stone lion-dog that he made himself, leading me to believe he's some sort of rock carver or sculptor. His Pokemon type might be Rock or Ground, but I want to go with Rock because Hisuian Arcanine is literally a stone lion-dog and I can totally see it as his ace. Maybe Stu will be the one who maintains the standing stones on the mountain peak just east of his house? What are the odds.

Meanwhile, Kody has given Lena a crafting recipe for a skateboard rack, which would probably interest her if she had any skateboards. You never know when you need an emergency skateboard for a speedy getaway after a prank. Lena decided to spread the love around by gifting Kody with that blue and black track jacket that's very much his style... so much so that he mentions that it 'looks familiar' when he receives it. Um, whoops. Yeah... Lena really didn't mean to regift it to the gifter, but that's how it turned out. At least he's a good sport about it, and he seems to enjoy wearing it.

As it turns out, it doesn't take long before Kody has Stu over at his house, so hey, they're making friends already!

---

Leif has finally showed up, and Lena buys out nearly his entire stock. Lillies, cosmos, tomato starts, and both types of azalea bush. The azaleas are for Flora's yard, which I'll start decorating once I've figured out where to place her house and get the ability to move it. Thankfully Nook's already hard at work getting Resident Services upgraded into a nice fancy building, and thankfully this time around he didn't pester Lena into gathering all the necessary supplies for construction. I may still have PTSD for that one quest in Disney Dreamlight Valley where Minnie wanted 200 units of clay.

So while Raccoon Corp. continues its push towards establishing an illegal corporate monopoly and banana republic on Koinonia, I now have a couple of build ideas to pursue. First off, I'd like to give Flora a watering hole with the azalea bushes and some nice hybrid flowers once we get some; second, I want to design an area specifically for the crops. Unfortunately, at my current level in the game, I don't really have all that much to work with, only managing to craft a water pump and a bucket for the watering hole. But given that I can't move my villagers' houses yet anyway, let alone terraform, I've got a long enough ways to go that I shouldn't sweat it just yet.

That being said, I have not yet crafted a watering can on this save file and I need to just buck up and do that. No point waiting around for rainy weather if I want to get my sweet, sweet hybrid flowers to start blooming.

Lena encountered what initially looked like Gulliver passed out on the beach, but it turned out to be 'Gullivarr,' a pirate captain Gulliver from an alternate universe that all but confirms my Cassette Beasts theory of Koinonia being where a bunch of people from other timelines just so happen to drop into. (Faller much?) Apparently Gullivarr's timeline is more high-tech than you'd imagine for the pirate era, given that his communicator can survive being literally dropped in the ocean, something I don't think any current-era cell phone would, at least not as long as Gullivarr's did. But anyway, Lena found it because she swims like a duck, and in return the pirate captain sent her a literal cannon. That's a significant upgrade from the slingshot. (She promises not to use it for evil. Usually. But if Magica ever shows up, she's totally getting blasted out of the sky.)

And on the subject of characters appearing... I really, really do not like ACNH's game mechanic where characters will randomly show up and invite themselves into your house. Given how important hospitality is in Japanese culture, this is unlikely to ever change, and it's not as if my character doesn't invite herself into other people's houses on a daily basis to scout for crafting recipes, but given that you can't add, remove, or move furniture while you have a guest over, this can get kind of annoying when it happens at the wrong time. At least they usually bring a gift with them, and once you've collected it you can just be a rude host and head for the exit to entice them to leave, but I still find it somewhat obnoxious.

---

Brainstorming for Stu's Rock-type team, two obvious choices are Hisuian Arcanine and Stonjourner, both based on man-made structures. Aerodactyl is another good one for an island full of fossils; I even recently donated an Amber to the museum. Given Lazy villagers' love of snacks, Garganacl works well as a constant source of salt, and given their affinity for bugs, a Bug and Rock type was essential, so I gave him Kleavor because its cutting tools could be useful in hewing stone. For the final team member, one of my favorite Rock types (which I never seem to have actually used because when you encounter them in the wild in Alola, they use Self-Destruct, but that's another story) is Minior, which looks very much like the star fragments that will wash up on your island's beach the day after you make a wish, so I decided to give Stu one of those. I haven't decided what color its core would be, though. (Both Minior and the star fragments in ACNH appear to be based off a Japanese candy called Konpeitō, so there's definitely a connection there, however indirect.)

Flora seems to think that she's an up-and-coming pop star, so I feel like the Fairy type would fit her fairly well. Aromatisse is an obvious pick for a flamingo, and Togekiss makes for a good Fairy/Flying type that spreads joy to others. Mr. Mime might seem like an odd choice, since many people in the West find clowns scary, but it's a pink performing mon, so it fits Flora quite well, as does the singing Wigglytuff. Primarina and Mega Altaria round out this group, both of which are known performers and even if regular Altaria isn't a Fairy type itself, it is a fairy bird in its final form and I think that fits Flora quite well.

When it comes to Mitzi, I still don't really have a bead on her character. She's cute and all, but she and Lena haven't exactly interacted much yet, so I don't have much to go on in terms of who she is or what sorts of Pokemon she'd have. I'm thinking that she's probably going to be a Normal-type trainer, and given that ACNH involves growing crops, she could be our farm girl. There's a number of good Normal types for a farmer, including Miltank, Stoutland, Oinkologne (female), Kantonian Farfetch'd, and... let's give her Diggersby to till the fields and Arboliva to help invigorate the plants.

So I've got five villagers on this island aside from Lena, meaning I'm halfway filled out. Now that Resident Services is up and running, I've presumably got the opportunity to move villager homes... but I've also got Happy Home Paradise finally unlocked... and I still haven't visited Harv's island... or unlocked Kapp'n tours... so what's next on my adventure?

 

Edited by Lorekitten
Added links to the named villagers' wiki articles for reference

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