“In-game purchases” could mean anything from DLC to microtransactions. Would Nintendo add microtransactions to Animal Crossing: New Horizons?
Nintendo fans were ecstatic when a new Animal Crossing title was finally announced and the hype has been… weird these last few weeks. A lot of fans and newbies are excited, meanwhile, others are wary of Nintendo’s new choices and limitations. Not only are they not allowing players separate islands on different profiles in the upcoming Animal Crossing: New Horizons. They also chose to dismiss the ability to transfer data from one Switch to another due to time mechanics. Not only those, though, they also went about dismissing cloud saves… but now, they appear to be adding “in-game purchases” to its no doubt $59.99 game.
Nothing is set in stone or at least noted by Nintendo, it’s DLC likely as they’ve been doing this with other titles of theirs on the Switch. Just look at Pokémon Sword and Shield which are getting two upcoming DLC packed with 200+ Pokémon, new areas to explore, and new clothing to waste your simulated money on that you got by extorting people after you brutally beat up their pets.
Some believe this is a method of Nintendo adding in microtransactions. This kind of content is a commonplace thing in modern gaming, not just in the mobile, free-to-play market, but also in triple-A titles and full-priced games. Odds are that’s not the case, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has this same “in-game purchases” tag. All it has is DLC characters, but because you purchase them with real money, it’s deemed an in-game purchase.
Nintendo has, however, dabbled in microtransactions in the past, 2013’s Rusty’s Real Deal Baseball is a prime example of how they felt about them at that time. They should be optional and only be there if you don’t want to grind for the satisfaction of accomplishing something. Heck, it’s even discouraged you go about paying real money.
Would it be an outlier?
Once Nintendo hit the mobile market, though, all that seemed to fly out the window. Pokémon GO, the mobile title that allows you to walk around the world and catch the adorable pocket monsters, has microtransactions. In the app, you can purchase Pokécoins with real cash. What do you get with said coins? Well, they offer a myriad of options. Pokéballs are up on that list alongside incense, lucky eggs, potions, and revives, all of which you can earn by leveling up and visiting Pokéstops in the real world.
It gets murky quickly as you find things like extra items and/or Pokémon storage in that list. Without upgrading, the average trainer can carry 300 pocket monsters without having to get rid of a single one. Items are capped at 350. Each purchase gives a trainer 50 extra slots. Sure, it’s only the equivalent of $2, but that can add up. Later in life, Animal Crossing Pocket Camp, the mobile game made to satiate fans, also added microtransactions and followed the steps of Mario Kart Tour and did a subscription service.
The odds of them going through with a microtransactions system doesn’t seem likely as they’re already in deep, hot water for the other problems plaguing Animal Crossing: New Horizons, such as data transfer and one island per console. But, with Nintendo, you never know. It could be DLC, it could microtransactions, we’ll all know when it releases on March 20, 2020.
Has this faltered your excitement for the game’s release?