Animal Crossing New Horizons: Happy Home Paradise DLC
Hi there Traders! Welcome to the first proper TMI blog post. You’re in for a real treat today, because I’m going to be telling you all about the brilliant new DLC for Animal Crossing New Horizons. It was released on the 5th November after much anticipation from a sea of fanatics (me included). Please be aware that a spoiler alert is in place, as I’ll be talking about some of the unlockable amenities on the Paradise Island.
I’m sure many of us have had the similar experience of burnout with the game after playing relentlessly for the better part of a year. I felt so guilty to be leaving behind my beloved villagers (especially Clay and Sherb- I’m still so sorry for abandoning you both!!), but I found myself bored of the same lacklustre gameplay, day after day. Wake up, bash rocks, sell fossils, check the shop, repeat. It began to feel like more of a chore than an activity.
Since the DLC dropped, I’ve not been able to pull myself away from the game. It’s like the launch week all over again! The general is that your character becomes an interior designer for the Happy Home Academy. It’s stylised as “going to work”; this is a job for your character, complete with a customisable uniform and wages. Oh! But you don’t get paid in bells! No, on the Paradise Island, you receive a currency called Poki. It can be used to buy items from the local shops, as well as to make donations to the facilities. It’s important to note that Poki can’t be used back on your home island, and Bells can’t be used here.
When you arrive, the adorable new NPC Niko will take you to the office, where you meet the boss (and a familiar face for older players), Lottie, as well as the stoic manatee, Wardell. You’ll be put straight to work designing a home for an animal; the first client tends to be Ellie the elephant, who will request a Relaxing Reading Room. Naturally, you’ll want to fill the room with muted colours, books, and shelves for some extra books! At least, that’s what I did and she seemed to be pretty pleased with the outcome.
You’ll then be asked to approach potential clients. There will be three or four characters relaxing on the beach by the dock; when you walk by them, a thought bubble with their ideal vacation home will appear above them. You’re free to choose whichever project sounds the most appealing. You’ll quickly find yourself building up a solid roster of clients, which in turn will unlock more furniture and some more tasks.
Lottie will eventually task you with designing facilities, starting with a school. The more villager projects you complete, the more facilities you unlock. After the school you can choose a restaurant or a café, followed by a hospital, then a restaurant or café (whichever one you didn’t pick originally), and finally, and most exciting of all… an apparel shop! This final build includes six special mannequins that will change each day, allowing you to buy the items displayed at the time. You can even choose a style of clothing for the shop to specialise in- I chose “cute”.
After you’ve completed all the facilities and seen DJ KK’s performance (you can buy some glow in the dark festival wear from your apparel shop for this special occasion), you’re pretty much done. There’s a few more little things you can do, such as donating your Poki towards an expansion for the hospital, but otherwise you’re now a fully-fledged interior designer!
More and more animals will continue to show up on the beach, or in one of the facilities, hankering for a vacation home. They’ll come back to visit you afterwards as well, and will gift you with an item that you used when designing their home. Whilst this kind of gameplay might become monotonous for some players, I think it’s a really interesting way of playing with all my favourite villagers and will continue to play long after I’ve completed the postgame.
That’s pretty much everything you need to know about the new Animal Crossing DLC, although there’s one last important point of discussion to be had… Niko and Wardell are THE BEST! Niko was an instant fan favourite from the moment the trailer dropped due to his adorable appearance, and his demeanour makes him absolutely deserving of this outpour of love. He’s helpful, friendly, cute, and he’ll always make sure you’re the first to know when he discovers a new DIY recipe (shout out to the pillars and partition walls, they’re such a needed addition). I feel like players have dropped the ball regarding Wardell, though. The hype for Niko was so immense that fans seem to have overlooked just how precious Wardell is. My favourite thing is when you meet him to watch the sunset and listen to the waves on the beach. The further you progress through the game, the more he’ll open up to you and value you as a true friend. He even sends you a vacation-patterned hammock in the mail with the loveliest letter about how happy you’ve made everybody. It’s the sweetest thing and he deserves way more hype!
So, I think I’ve covered all the key details for what to expect when playing Happy Home Paradise. It’s currently available for download on the Nintendo eShop for £22.49, and if you’re experiencing Animal Crossing burnout then I can’t recommend this DLC highly enough! Please do let us know if you’ve played it already, or if you’re planning on getting it any time soon. We’d also love to hear who you’re most looking forward to decorating a home for! I was lucky enough to get new villager Shino requesting a home, and her idea was great fun to create!
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading the first TMI blog post. Make sure to stay tuned for many more, and if there’s anything in particular you’d like us to cover then don’t hesitate to tell us!
We look forward to seeing you in store soon. Until then, take care and happy gaming!