Island Escape

It would seem I am not okay.

Until yesterday I had assumed I was. But as another day settled and all I did was work and play Animal Crossing, I realized the truth. I’m escaping from this solitary existence into a game with ten imaginary friends.

For those not “in the know”, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the latest in a long-going series of games developed by Nintendo. The aim is, well, nothing specific. It’s a simulation game where you pretend to be a creature living on an island. It’s pure imagination-fueled. You are given an island, basically, and you have to catch fish and bugs and garden and spend copious amounts of currency (on bridges, furniture, inclines) until you can make your island less, you know, island-y. As you travel through the game, you get cute anthropomorphic residents (my favorites are a sheep, a zebra, and an anteater). None of them have jobs or do much of anything except sometimes sing or pretend to fish and catch bugs or ask you weird random questions or give you clothes for no reason. It’s cute, it’s relaxing, and best of all, it’s all yours.

I have logged over 250 hours into the game already (released 22 Mar). It’s been all-consuming. Over a 4 day weekend, I planned to write, do some weeding, read a bit, watch a couple of movies, and finish crocheting a scarf (because: cooler weather, yo!). I managed to do… none of those things. I was caught in a vortex.

I woke on Friday morning with the best idea. Make a secret hidden amusement park at the back of my island. Once I went down that rabbit hole, it turned to adding a bamboo forest and moving all the residents into their own little village, and the list goes on.

It seems I’m not alone in my not-okay-ness. The sheer volume of people talking about it on Twitter and Facebook and Reddit, and so on, is just mind-boggling. It was my therapy, but no more. I know it for what it is. It’s an addiction.

So now that I’ve said it, did I reach the first step? Am I cured? I both hope so and hope not. Because, I love my little island and it brings me such joy. (Pictures because why not?)

 

(Also, for those that do play and wanna be friends, my friend code is SW-3080-7022-4167)

15 thoughts on “Island Escape

    1. hahaha Twitter arguments are a mainstay at any time. For my escape, I want to be able to tune out the real world completely. This game most certainly does that. Maybe a little too well. haha

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  1. i honestly had no idea what animal crossing is, but i had seen mentions of it on social media. ahha thank you for explaining it!

    video game creators know how to entice you and keep you in their imaginary world. their games literally mess with your brain! but i have no judgement here. i had forever heard of everybody playing that one game years ago.. what was it called? Candy Crush?! I had read about it in the newspaper, how everyone was playing it on their phones, on the train… when i went home to visit my sick family member, we were in the hospital and everyone was doing what? playing candy crush!! i was flabbergasted!! then i succumbed and played it on my mom’s ipad. bad idea. i ended up downloading it onto my phone and realized how addictive it was.

    i deleted it and have resisted going back. =D

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I played Candy Crush for a couple of months, but I killed that addiction fast. The first Animal Crossing game came out when I was in my early twenties, around 17 years ago, and I was addicted to it then too. My roommate and I would leave ourselves notes around the house telling each other an event was happening or that we left each other things on the island to find, etc. So I think some of it is nostalgia too. Still, I guess at least I’m using my imagination. The island is literally only trees, grass, and water, and all that you see in the pictures is stuff I have done to it to make it look like a little village.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t play video games and haven’t felt the draw, especially the story telling kinds of games, but I loved this glimpse into what draws players. I listened in while two of my students played what I think was Fortnite today and it wasn’t like I expected at all. If it’s working for you, who says you shouldn’t climb in and live there?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Margaret! I’ve been playing video games since I was 6, so it’s kinda in my blood now. haha Usually I don’t play these kinds of games, but somehow Animal Crossing is the exception. I guess maybe, I just need to find a balance, because right now, writing, it ain’t happenin’. and some of that is because of this sweet little game (but mostly me being very unfocused.)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Okay great. Now I need to go buy a Switch because I’ve only got the ancient version of Animal Crossing and the Pocket version and I miss virtual gardening and fishing and collecting clothes (oh my god, my virtual wardrobe is ridiculously large). I love this game so much and as soon as I buy a Switch Imma come find you so we can hang out in each other’s gardens virtually.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You definitely should get it all! Because it is great to escape into a garden that will only die if you trample it. When you do, we will most certainly have to hang out in our gardens. I’ll even send you random gifts because why not? Hehe

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Omg! Now that I know its a thing, I want that too! I shouldn’t talk about the fact that my wardrobe changes 3-5 times a day, not including my magic wand changes, since they’re situational like rain outfit for rain, and construction (complete with hi vis, safety boots, and tool case) for terraforming.

      Liked by 1 person

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