Animal Crossing/Headscratchers

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  • Where the devil does Tom Nook get his money? Most of the characters (except the various NPCs in charge of the shops and things) don't seem to actually have jobs, and most of them seem to earn money primarily by selling things to Tom Nook. But just about the only thing there is in town to spend money on is... Tom Nook's store! The money just loops back to him! Sure, there are trees in town that drop Bells, but it's nothing compared to what you can pull selling things to Nook. This is especially bad if you consider what it means for your mortgage: You owe him the money, but you pay him back largely with money you earned by selling him things! Where do all these Bells ultimately originate from? What's fueling these tiny, small-town economies? It makes my head hurt.
    • Why do you think Bells even grow on trees? They're just leaves! The Bell bags are bags with leaves on them, so Bells must be leaves! Clearly Nook just pulls some of the leaves off and exchanges them for items, which he sells for real money to other towns.
      • Bell bags actually have stars on them. However, I wouldn't put the "Bells are leaves" shtick past Tom Nook, the sly old dog...
    • Simple, Tom Nook is a wholesaler. He gets all the random crap harvested from all the animals in the village and sells it to other businesses outside the village. Given his business monopoly and indentured servitude racket, I'd have to say he qualifies as a Magnificent Bastard.
    • Animal Crossing is very similar to a communist economic system, when you think about it. Which, of course, makes Tom Nook Stalin.
    • No, actually it's because you still have to pay him for furniture, which are actually just magic transforming leaves that also grow on every tree in town, but nobody but him has figured it out. Even your character doesn't realise it when (s)he shakes down a single "leaf", so apparently Tom Nook is the smartest guy in the game.
    • Of course, Tom Nook is a tanuki, and they have the ability to turn leaves into other objects. When you think about it, it means that nothing in the town is real, and Tom Nook has singlehandedly turned a mere forest's worth of leaves into a thriving civilization with its own economy. This could be a good or bad thing.
    • I don't really buy the idea of the whole "Bells = Leaves" theory. For one; Bells are considered currency in other places beyond Nook's control. Two; Your Mom references Bells once or twice in her letters, and even sends you a small stipend of a few thousand near the start of City Folk (It might also have been the case with Wild World, it's been so damn long since I started my game). Three; I believe you start with 1,000 Bells in your pocket when you start Animal Crossing GCN. Four; if Nook could turn leaves into cash, why does he even bother to run a store when money literally grows on trees? With that power he could become the richest raccoon tanuki person bastard on earth in a few months. Nope, I think the reason he gets his money is plain and simple: Tom Nook Hates Your Guts. He sells furniture for a large amount of cash, and buys it back at about a quarter of the price. Since he's the only store in town (Save the Able Sisters, and they only sell certain items and only buy clothes and accessories in WW and don't even buyback in CF) he's got a virtual monopoly going on in town. Other animals reference buying stuff in Nook's (When not complaining about being dirt poor after buying stuff in Nook's), so it's clear that you're not his only customer. All he needs is a small business capital to buy stock (Hence the fact that he starts out in Tortimer's old garden shed. Wouldn't surprise me if the tools he sells were left behind by that senile old coot), and things just snowballs from there. Nothing magical here, just that he's a savvy businessman.
      • Until you remember all the "free" bells you get for fish/insects. Since you get pretty much all bells from Nook, and eventually can get an extreme surplus, he's clearly giving you more than you give. Unless he has other (significant) income, he should be going broke.
      • Humans are the only customer that's actually simulated. A Sold Out sign never appears when humans aren't looking.
    • Jossed by the inventory icon for 100-900 Bells (see Animal Crossing in WMG).
      • As for the bells being leaves, there's even more proof that bells, in fact, are coins. In addition to the aforementioned note just above this one (bells do indeed appear as a single coin if you take out a multiple of 100 bells from WW onwards), the player can drop bags of bells at any point since AC onward through WW and CF where they will always make a cling sound, indicating they are filled with coins (leaves, especially dormant-mode furniture leaves, however, make a rustle or plop noise when dropped like many other objects, the rustling coming from when they drop from trees). The aforementioned note above also is proof as tanukis indeed are notable for turning leaves into other objects, especially gold (among other... aherm... notabilities...), and wouldn't be too much of a stretch to indicate Nook could make most of his money by transforming leaves into bells, but the bells themselves are not leaves. It also doesn't prove that Nook has invented all bells so much as was just a key influence in circulating them among your town (and although other businesses existed, such as the Able Sisters and their tailor shop or WW's hair salon with Harriet, it can be argued that their business relies on bells from the villagers who likewise got their bells from Nook). Examples of things that are not in Nook's control that could indicate that bells are not solely seen in that town were instances you have special characters visit the town who do not in turn lose their money back into the town and back into Nook's network. If someone buys something from Redd, for instance, Redd takes the money and leaves town without spending it further within that town. The same applies to Katrina, Sahara, Joan and so forth (although it may be argued Joan is not the straightest example since she may do business with Nook and it's not known just how far the Stock Market really stretches to). Then WW also introduced the added businesses of Brewster (whose payments are probably limited to either rent to Blathers or food, which Nook doesn't outright sell), while CF has the city (which aren't entirely in Nook's hands). Finally, in addition to the player coming into town with some kind of amount of bells at the start, your mother supplies you 1,000 bells every new years. If bells are currency solely used within the town, there is no reason for other businesses to accept them if they don't live long enough in the area to spend it anyways. Now, as far as whether or not Nook used his tanuki powers to give our furniture (and other things) the ability to become portable...
  • Why do all the animals live segregated lives away from all the humans? Given the letters from your mother, it's implied that humans and animals live in different cities, and for a human to move to an animal town is highly unusual. What happened? Was there a human/animal war? And why would a human choose to move to an animal town? The animals don't seem to think you're all that strange, but your mother thinks in her letters that they "must smell."
    • Speaking of your mother (so to speak), what's up with that letter where she says "Have you met anyone special? We want grandkids!"? She clearly knows you're in a town of animals. There can be up to three other human PCs in town, but in Real Life, these are most likely your siblings -- or even your actual mother. Massive amounts of Squick.
    • Interspecies Romance? Gender Equals Breed, maybe? Or maybe Biological Mashup hybrid babies? The other animals don't seem against dating outside their species (if the gossip you encounter is anything to go by)...
      • The humans in other towns? Hopefully...
    • It's really quite obvious. The world was ruled by a absolute Dictator, who had a Hitler-like segregation plan for the animals and was going to put them into concentration camps. But before he could put his plan into action, he died and was replaced by his more moderate second-in-command, who didn't want to imprison the animals, but couldn't go against segregation because of the political landscape. So he put all the animals into fairly pleasant towns away from humans to keep with the separation policy without being overly cruel.
    • Mom's a little racist and humans are just another animal.
  • How come the animals never let you borrow anything?
    • Don't they give a lot to begin with?
      • Yeah, I recall getting a couch for delivering mail to someone that was 9 feet away.
  • If the creators didn't want the players resetting the game every time something doesn't go their way, why didn't they just put in an auto save feature?
    • Because they wanted us to experience the terror of coming against Resetti.
    • Or because auto-saving doesn't work quite well for real-time games anyway. What would happen if you turned the game off just one minute after the game auto-saved? That's right, one minute of your game life lost forever! So that's the reason behind Resetti: he works better than auto-saving (oh, yeah, I know...)
      • Then have it autosave whenever the player does something irreversible, such as after a conversation with an NPC. Keeping it in the form of a transaction journal might help efficiency.
    • Now, I don't own a Game Cube, so I don't know how exactly saving works, but I read here that you apparently need a memory card to save the game, so I guess that's the problem. You could just remove the memory card and the program can't save.
      • The DS game saves to an 88 KB file on a 256 KB flash chip on the Game Card, and the Wii game saves to a 4.5 MB file on 512 MB xD-Picture Card soldered into the console. Perhaps an autosaving game would just pause when the memory card is removed, just like Super Smash Bros.. Melee pauses when the Game Disc is removed.
        • Worse, what if you or something else accidentally shuts the game off DURING the auto-save? (like in a thunderstorm)
  • Gyroids are funerary statues of sorts, and they are alive (and singing, no less). What the heck? And how come no one ever created a good WMG theory about them yet?! And consider we have a "Tom Nook is a Time Lord" apparently just for the sake of having it...
    • Why hasn't anyone created a good WMG theory about them? Because someone already has...
      • And also this. But I was expecting someone to come with something even better or different...
        • If you want something made, you gotta make it yourself... And thus I did.
    • They're mechanical clay dolls. Some people or animals made them for a nondescript reason- they're not any more alive than wind-up toys.
  • Speaking of humans in Animal Crossing, you can have three human neighbors. You never see them. Humans from other towns can visit yours, but only when you're nowhere to be found. Possibly weirder is in Animal Crossing: Wild World, where you never see your fellow human housemates. By contrast, you can see other humans... if they're from another town. Something about that strikes me as weird.
    • Actually, you can see your housemates...they're just always asleep...
      • Which, in itself, is rather creepy if one thinks about it...
    • The animals mention going into your house and just lying on your floor when you aren't there. Besides the fact that going into someone's house when they aren't there or when they are asleep and just hangin' is incredibly creepy, it allows them to do whatever they want to you with their furry little arms to the comatose neighbors upstairs. Seriously, why can't I get a damn padlock? Nook probably doesn't sell any because he likes to go into your house and be a creepster at night. Wait, it all makes sense now.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation, if there's any story at all. Really, I find it even weirder that the bee I caught got ten times bigger than when it was stinging me. And then there are talking animals all around...
    • About the bees: I think those are supposed to be sparrow bees ((雀蜂, suzumebachi), two inch long hornets that are quite deadly under the right circumstances....
    • When you are chased by bees, you are chased by a huge swarm of them. If you catch them, however, you catch a single huge bee. Where did the other bees go? Did you kill them with your net when you caught the one?
      • When all the little bees get caught in the net, they morph into one huge bee.
  • What really bugs me is the bus in City Folk. First of all, there's no pavement for cars to drive on. Second, depending on the layout of your town, your bus should have crashed into trees, plunged into the river, or crash head on with a cliff wall because the bus ALWAYS drives in a straight line. The bus is yellow and could be considered a magic bus, but come on, Nintendo!
    • Or if you're like mine where the bus plows right into a house right as it leaves the screen.
    • GHOST BUS.
    • Maybe its like the cat bus from My Neighbor Totoro.....
  • Why is the "city" smaller than your sleepy animal village? Why does no one actually live there? It has more in common with an outdoor mall than a major urban area. Would a more accurate translation have been Animal Crossing: Mall Rats?
    • There's a road that runs past the fountain in the city. One could always assume that Kapp'n just drops you off in the shopping district of the city.
  • Blanca. Why doesn't she have a face? There has to be a reason to it, especially since she can talk without a mouth!
    • She used to work for the Tanuki Mafia. She betrayed Nook, the head Mobster and escaped, but he managed to erase her face (don't ask). She doesn't want you to mention it to people because she's afraid Tom will find her and get her. Rover always asks you about her because he works for the Tanuki Mafia and wants to finish her off. He does use the only phone in the game, after all, and he himself has said he is friends with Tom Nook.
    • Maybe someone was displeased Blanca was a feminine boy. (http://www.nintendo.co.jp/wii/ruuj/character/village_visitor.html#cat-navi01)
    • To be exact, the page translates to "What is said to draw a face suddenly met me, surprised! Why did I fell makeup? What? But who? !"
  • Seriously, how do all those boots keep getting in the river? I mean, you're the only human here, and none of the townsfolk wear shoes...
    • That's why none of the townsfolk wear shoes, they kept losing them in the river.
    • I would guess that the town you live in is downriver from a human town.
      • As I can recall, the river in our towns starts from a spring up on the cliff.
    • And the river and ocean never run out because they're the same boots over and over. When Nook takes them or the garbage collector picks them up from the dump, they just throw the boots back into the river for you to catch again.
  • Why in the world would a man build you a gold statue because you paid off your debt? That makes NO SENSE.
    • It's obvious, the animals believe you're God (how else did you manage to get the Raccoon Mafia to build you a mansion?). Just roll with it and hope they don't begin sacrificing goats in your honor.
  • I do not get the censors on the DS and Wii versions of the game. In the DS, you can't type out certain swear words or they will be blanked out. On the Wii, you can type it out in the keyboard function, but aren't allowed to swear for names or catchphrases.
    • You also can't say anything ending in -astic. From funfantastic to spastic, nothing gets through.
  • Why do the animals treat you like a slave? Sure, a lot of humans treat animals like 4th class citizens but..? Does this have to do with the fact that humans live separate from animals?
  • Why is it that the real paintings you buy from Crazy Redd's are able to be reordered from the catalogue, and not the counterfeit ones? Why are there multiples of real ones at all?
    • Bring a second real painting to Blathers after having donated the same one to the museum earlier. He's concerned, too.
    • Multiple real paintings are reprints authorized by the painter's estate. Counterfeits are infringing.
  • Marina (Wild World) is an octopus. You can catch octopi in the ocean. Discuss.
    • Camofrog, Cousteau, Drift, Emerald, Frobert, Gigi, Huck, Jambette, Jeremiah, Lily, Prince, Puddles, Ribbot, Tad and Wart Jr. are frogs, and yet, you are able to catch frogs in the river/ponds.
    • There is a birdcage furniture piece with a non-sapient bird in it, and there is a non-sapient bird that perches on the scribble board in some versions. Perhaps only specific species have been uplifted.
      • In one conversation with Marina she can lampshade this.
      • I figured it was a limited number of species that were actually sentient. Bufonidae and Octopoda are fairly diverse orders, and Aves is a class (even broader than an order). It's not much stranger than humans hunting and eating monkeys or keeping them as pets. (At least until you consider that you can have a pet dog and a wolf neighbor...)
  • In every game, Sable is always the same way. Withdrawn, meets character, with regularly talking goes to a near romantic friendship with player, sudden dropoff down to kind-of friend. Dang it, she's the closest any given player gets to a romance option, and they know it, but when things start getting serious, she just seems to forget anything that happened in the past few weeks, it seems. WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT TO ME?
    • Nintendo looks down on Interspecies Romance? But then why even suggest it in the first place... Well, guess you'll just have to wait for someone to make an Animal Crossing dating sim.
    • Sable isn't the only "close-to" love interest in the game. If you play as a girl, both Kapp'n and occasionally the grumpy-type villagers will hit on you.
  • Nook. His name. Is it "Noo-kay" like most pronounce it ingame (would make sense since he's a Tanuki) or "Nook" (like "book")?
    • I pronounce it like "book"
    • Considering "Nook's Cranny" (as in "clean every nook and cranny in the house"), it almost certainly rhymes with "book".
    • They pronounce it "Nookay" in game because the talking ingame is actually just a computerized voice saying the letters of the word very fast.
  • Gracie, Saharah and Blanca. What are their genders in the Japanese GC and DS games?
    • Male. That's kind of common fact now. Same with Katrina. What about it?
  • The new look for the humans. It's some odd mix of the regular and Noodle People..
    • Perhaps you're just seeing that the proportions are slightly less Super-Deformed than you're used to. Humans with realistic proportions would look noodly to someone from the universe of Precious Moments, South Park, Little People, or AC.
      • I'm not so sure about that... I think the issue is that their bodies appear to be longer than their legs, which is just plain weird looking.
  • Why doesn't Franklin just stay at home from the Harvest Festival?
    • Quite plausible that either he doesn't have a home, or the villagers would break in and eat him anyway. Which leads me to...
  • Why the heck do the animals want to EAT another sentient animal their own size at the Harvest Festival? For a family-friendly game, this is extremely scary to my three-year-old niece who has only watched me play the game. She came to the conclusion herself!
    • It's been ages since I've played, but is it possible that Franklin's just paranoid?
      • No, I'm pretty sure the animals at the party pretty much say "we want to eat him".
        • I was convinced the animals wanted to eat Franklin too up until I played Mystery Dungeon Time & Darkness. In it, there was a swellow (a large bird) and a wurmple (a tiny worm) that lived and breathed this example with Swellow making remarks very similar and forward to Wurmple as the villagers did and with Wurmple sharing the same suspicions Swellow would one day eat him as Franklin shared with the villagers (only unlike Franklin who only fears this on Thanksgiving day, Wurmple shares these fears every waking hour he's with Swellow). Their team was named Team Tasty, for all manner, and Wurmple drew enough conclusions to convince the player that Swellow could very well be saving Wurmple as an emergency ration of some sort (or making it clear otherwise "read my beak. Tonight, you! Yum yum!). In the end, though, as forward as Swellow seemed on the idea, when Wurmple outright voiced his fears it turned out Swellow actually had no intention to eat Wurmple and was horrified of the idea, and I pictured Franklin also took these remarks out of context (and possibly combined with the villagers making such remarks either just on the feast itself or about a completely different turkey neither Franklin nor the player ever sees, which, as we have frogs, birds and octopi alongside villager frogs, birds and octopi, is not that big of a stretch), would make for a very akward Thanksgiving if Franklin took a deep breath and voiced his suspicions to the public.
  • Is Blazel, the unused squirrel character, a boy or a girl? She looks female but I've heard people use "he".
    • Based on the fact that its nameplate in the screenshot is blue, and all boys in the game have blue nameplates while the girls have pink, I think you're looking at a feminine guy here.
  • Is the protagonist a child, or an adult? The Movie seems to imply childhood, around 10 - 13, but I've always seen them as being in their late teens or early twenties. You drink coffee, are allowed to move out, and your parents bug you about having kids.
    • Considering you're allowed to get a job as well, I like to think of them as being around 16 or 17. I doubt they're actual adults; the line about your parents wanting you to have kids probably means "in the future". I also picture most of the neighbour animals as being around your age, with the exception of the 'grumpy' ones, who are a year or two older.
  • Why did Nintendo feel the need to make the Harvest Festival last from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.? I mean I get that there are some people who stay home on holidays, but most people around this time are visiting family for Thanksgiving, for example I have always never been able to play on the Wii at My grandparents due to football family wants to watch and the only handheld Animal Crossing (for now) got rid of the Harvest Festival so I can't celebrate it on My DS. Nintendo should really realize most people won't be home during the hours they set for this holiday. So why can't they set the event to start earlier in the day like during the morning when people are still home, or at the very least make it last until midnight so there can be a little extra time, I know you can time travel but your town suffers when you do that and its just not as fun as doing it on the actual day.
    • A lot of us don't have family to spend time with.
    • There's always time travel.
  • Am I the only one who wants a romance option?
    • I don't think Nintendo endorses that kind of stuff...
    • You're not the only one. A romance option, or at least a chance to "date" a town member would be nice. Would prevent them from moving out.
      • Isn't the human character a little young to be dating, much less an animal?
    • Isn't it implied they're college aged? It's just they're Super-Deformed.
  • In City Folk what's up with the Summertime not being all that eventful in America until the fireworks show in August? I mean yeah we got a DLC Hot Dog Hat for the 4th of July but that doesn't really have the same feeling as a true Fireworks show during the actual 4th of July like in the GCN one, also why is July such a dull month in City Folk? I mean that month is My Birthday month but all that happens in America during that time is a Bug off and a Flea Market. Why is it that they made the time around June, and mostly July so uneventful in America, because I don't really see things picking up until the end of the year holidays (Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years) and the early in the year holidays (Valentine's Day, Easter/Bunny Day), so why is it that Summer seems to be the least eventful season in City Folk in America, especially during the month of July?
    • Don't they have summertime events in other places, like Japan and Europe? If so, visit a friend's town that's in another region.
  • There is something that keeps me up at night sometimes. What do they eat?
    • Fruit and Fish; a very healthy diet.
      • And turnips. Can't forget the turnips.