New Horizons’ New Year’s Celebration


Animal Crossing: New Horizons fans may have just experienced the joy of Toy Day, but a special New Year’s Eve event is steadily approaching.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons has provided players with plenty of content to close out the year, from Franklin’s Turkey Day feast to Jingle’s Toy Day extravaganza. While players surely had a blast helping the NPCs with their meal-making and gift-giving, Nintendo still has one special event in store for Animal Crossing fans. Come New Year’s Eve, players will be able to head to their island plaza to celebrate the beginning of a brand-new year with the inhabitants of their island.

For players excited to ring in 2021 alongside their favorite Animal Crossing: New Horizons villagers, there are a few things that can be expected on December 31. From themed items and decorations to special conversations with island inhabitants, there will certainly be a lot to do before, during, and after the clock strikes midnight. As with any other event, players should free up some time and bells, as both will be needed to see all that the New Year’s celebration has to offer.

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Event Preparation

animal crossing new years items

Before players enter the square to celebrate with Isabelle and the island’s critters, it would be worthwhile to gather the New Year’s items that are already available in the game. By heading to the Resident Services Kiosk or using the NookPhone’s Nook Shopping app, Animal Crossing: New Horizons players can obtain four items fitting of the occasion. Three items will be food-related, with the special noodles, grapes, and Berliner being non-edible and purely for display purposes. However, the Sparkling Cider can be interacted with, and a press of the A button lets players make an adorable toast.

Players will want to have the Sparkling Cider ready at the very least, as they can perform toasts with friends and villagers alike on the special night using the item. Animal Crossing: New Horizons fans will only be spending 1,000 of their hard-earned bells on the Cider, a price that should be affordable to most longtime players of the TGS Game of the Year-winner. However, players will only have until December 31 to purchase the item, meaning that they should hop into the game and buy it as soon as possible.

With the Sparkling Cider in hand, players will be prepared to head to the plaza on New Year’s Eve. However, it is worth noting that Resident Services will be shut down for the entire day (from 5 AM onwards) meaning that players interested in printing off Nook Miles Tickets or improving their island with Tom Nook will need to do so before New Year’s Eve arrives. Once it does, players will only be able to focus on celebrating the end of 2020 and the beginning of 2021, as the doors to Resident Services will be blocked off with a massive countdown timer.

The Event Itself

Once New Year’s Eve arrives, players will find the Animal Crossing: New Horizons plaza fully redecorated with a massive countdown clock and balloons. Animal Crossing mascots Isabelle and Tom Nook will be standing in the plaza to celebrate with players, donning special New Year’s suits to look respectable for the special occasion. Both mascots will be giving special New Year’s items to players, though Tom Nook sees a far more complex item pool that Isabelle. Isabelle will give Animal Crossing: New Horizons fans a glowstick, which will always come in yellow – giving players no need to hunt down special color variations of the item. Tom Nook’s item situation is a bit more interesting, however.

The mysterious loan shark Tom Nook offers players one of two hats: the New Year’s Hat and the New Year’s Silk Hat. Each hat comes in eight colors, with blue, green, light blue, orange, pink, purple, red, and yellow hats available. However, the catch is that Tom Nook only offers one hat type per island, with only four colors available to obtain. As such, players will need to coordinate with friends or head to trading sites like Nookazon to claim the many different New Year’s hat variations.

With the hat and glowstick claimed, players will be doing much of what they normally do on New Year’s: waiting on the clock to strike midnight. With villagers dressed up in their New Year’s Garb and holding onto glowsticks of their own, the plaza should be a cute place to gather with friends come the 31st. Once January first arrives, players will likely see a brief return of Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ fireworks alongside the “Happy New Years” lights on the special clock in front of Resident Services.

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Post-Event Activities

Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ New Years Celebration has some stiff competition, as the game’s Halloween festivities proved to be one of 2020’s best video game events. However, one major benefit of the New Year’s Celebration is that it extends beyond New Year’s Eve itself, giving players a few things to do after their cheerful toasts in the island plaza. First up, players can claim seven special items from New Year’s events throughout the world to decorate their islands with, though they only have from January 1 to January 15 to purchase the limited time goodies.

A 2021 Celebratory Arch can be claimed, with the item description sharing that it will bring players good luck whenever they walk through the arch. A bamboo signpost called a Kadomatsu can also be acquired, with the item meant to welcome a god of the new year so that island homes can be blessed. More food comes in the form of a Kagamimochi and an Olivier Salad, while a Zodiac Ox Figurine and Shimekazari serve as house and island decorations. Rounding out the list of traditional New Years items from around the world is Yut Nori, a Korean board game played with sticks as opposed to dice. These items can be bought via Nook Shopping and cannot be catalogued, meaning players will only be able to acquire them for the first two weeks of 2021.

The final New Years Celebration feature is by far the most adorable, as it sees Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ villagers sharing their New Year’s resolutions with the player. On New Year’s Day, players can have a special conversation with each villager, with the personality of the various villager types shining through the quick bits of dialogue. Allowing players to get even more attached to their collection of island guests is a perfect way to end the event, and any Animal Crossing: New Horizons fans that have a favorite villager should take the time to hear their plans for the future.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons is available now on Nintendo Switch.

MORE: Nintendo is Selling Real Life Animal Crossing: New Horizons Dodo Pilot Jackets

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