Forever Island tips and experiences or New Leaf challenge for NH?

Lopdanshi

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2024
Posts
3
Bells
28
Points
0
Heya.

As a huge New Leaf fan, I did love New Horizons a lot when it came out, but the more I've played, the more I've missed what New Leaf had to offer. I always seem to run into a slump after a few months and end up resetting my island, really not getting far with anything due to terraforming and whatnot being so overwhelming T__T

But I ran across the idea of a Forever Island and fell in love with that. I think that could be fun, make the game less about decorating and more about playing. Planning to reset my island one last time soon :) So anyone have any experiences? How's your island growing alongside you?

Also I heard of a New Leaf challenge when I looked for AC burnout help, but found no info whatsoever about it. Anyone know how to make NH more like NL as well? I miss how NL is so much more about playing and living in your village when NH is just... A fancy decorating game that doesn't feel progressive after unlocking "Town hall",,,
 
I looked it up... I believe it's a term for an ACNH island that you plan to keep for a while, without resetting.
Ah, thank you Suguri
I looked it up too before posting my question and just wanted to ask in case it was something else. Or if it was a challenge of some sort..?
 
Heya.

As a huge New Leaf fan, I did love New Horizons a lot when it came out, but the more I've played, the more I've missed what New Leaf had to offer. I always seem to run into a slump after a few months and end up resetting my island, really not getting far with anything due to terraforming and whatnot being so overwhelming T__T

But I ran across the idea of a Forever Island and fell in love with that. I think that could be fun, make the game less about decorating and more about playing. Planning to reset my island one last time soon :) So anyone have any experiences? How's your island growing alongside you?

Also I heard of a New Leaf challenge when I looked for AC burnout help, but found no info whatsoever about it. Anyone know how to make NH more like NL as well? I miss how NL is so much more about playing and living in your village when NH is just... A fancy decorating game that doesn't feel progressive after unlocking "Town hall",,,
Hi there!

I would like to begin with I didn't get a chance to really play ACNL, so I don't know how to compare the games from personal experience, but I wanted to touch on your question about forever islands on ACNH. Will probably be a long reply. Read what you want.

Currently, I'm working on my forever island, probably my 3rd or 4th reset. Although I agree that decorating has become such a huge component for ACNH, I think it is totally do-able to play in other ways as well. Personally, when I first started playing this game four years ago, I didn't start with decoration. I just cataloged and somehow I got really into trying to complete picking up every single item, donating every single creature to the museum, and basically living such a completionist lifestyle. It actually seemed pretty bothersome to decorate. I took a long break from the game when I started back at university and grew tired of playing. However, fast forward to this year, the only reason now that I'm actually finding motivation to decorate and terraform (like you're supposed to) is to complete this forever island. It has been about 4 weeks now and I've accomplished a lot. Now, I know you were asking about playing more so than decorating, so now that you know my backstory, I really could see myself being able to actually play again once I'm majorly done with decoration.

I think one trick is, switching mentality. It's an incorrect assumption or idea that "I have to complete decorating my island before I can play." I'm not saying that's how you think, but I'm associating it to how some humans believe in order to achieve happiness, they must reach a certain point in their life (ie. I'll be happy once I get this done and I've finished this, or once I get married, or once I make this amount of money, etc). So at least, that was my idea in my head, but I've learned that it's possible to take breaks from building or decorating to play. I know a lot of decorators focus solely on decorating because they want to release a DA for their friends and followers or move on to making another island (totally valid way to play the game as well- not talking negatively about that aspect), but for players who like you want to try moving away from decorating as the sole goal, it is totally do-able when you switch mentality.

So, because I've figured out that I don't need to finish all my island first or at a certain time, I've accepted that my island will never be finished. With this acceptance, I've learned the best way to play this game is to switch it up whenever you get burnt out or take breaks from the game when needed. For such a long time, I was playing as much as I could because I was motivated to work on my island terraforming & custom coding. Then, I was stuck with working on a section and didn't play for a day or so, maybe two. Then, I would be motivated again. The other day, I didn't feel like decorating my forever island, and instead would sit with one of my villagers, or explore my unfinished island. I would walk alongside another villager, or stalk them to see their life from their point of view. So, for me, even though I'm nowhere near finished with my first entire island decoration, I'm taking the time to enjoy the game beyond the goals I set for myself. It allows you to appreciate what you've built without growing tired of it. Additionally, hypothetically let's say I finish my island and want to change up my entrance, or I want to change my restaurant to a cafe....or, I want to rebuild an area to represent something else- that's okay too! I think what keeps me from getting completely burnt out is not focusing on 1 goal the entire time I play, but, allowing myself to be motivated with different goals that change.

Like, my major goal is finish my island terraforming the first time around, but my smaller goals consist of gifting my villagers specific outfits, or, creating new outfits. I'll also take time to just browse through Pinterest for custom codes I can switch out possibly. One day, all those goals will change. Especially because with seasons, unfortunately only changing "the path" won't switch everything; not as simple. Maybe I will be lazy and feel like enjoying my villagers without redecorating everything to match the season. Or maybe I will be motivated to switch out decorations too. I think for me, the best guide to playing this game is listening to what you want to do.

I think burnt out is created when you're tired of one thing without allowing the flexibility to explore all the different aspects of this game. On a simple level, this game is advertised talking to villagers, fishing and decorating. However, anyone who's played this game for an extended amount of time knows that there's so much more to this game. There's complexities in the villager personalities, there's cataloging, there's customization, there's collecting, there's building. All the ways you can play this game are allowed- whether it's someone who plays only to fish and minimally decorates, or someone who plays only for decorating; the entire spectrum from one extreme to the other is acceptable. Just because someone plays one way doesn't mean you have to and vice versa. So, if you've focused a lot on decorating and are burnt out, maybe try playing it a different way. Take a break when you want to. Focus on one build if you want to and then don't do another until you feel like it. I think that's helped me.

So, you asked about how has my island grown with me? I've changed my custom designs a few times. I've even combined multiple "the path" versions to make my own Frankenstein walkway...because as nice as it is to have it be just 1 version, there's no rule that says you can't switch it up. I tried to make it cohesive, I think one of the versions I used is a little lighter, but I don't mind it. I made an ice cream shop, and then switched it out for a ramen shop. I figured, why not change things up when I want to? I guess that's the beauty of a forever island. It's not supposed to be made a certain way frozen in time through a DA. It's supposed to be an island that you can do what you want to whenever you want. Re-add, demolish. The purpose isn't to have a whole map made and then start all over, but more so, explore different options, switch it up when you don't like it or want to change. My original ideas have changed. I also made one part of my island Japanese and the other part more cottagecore. Like I said, these mini goals are nice because you finish something like say, a boardwalk with rides and you get the dopamine pleasure of finishing the goal. Then, you get the dopamine to move on to the next. Then maybe, you'll return to that area and do something else. Or like I said, maybe you don't feel like decorating or building and you just want to focus on say, fishing for 100 fish without messing up. Or maybe, you just want to visit villager homes and sit with them until you don't feel like playing the game anymore that day. I've definitely played on days and literally did no work on my island. I just walked around trying to catch insects to fill my critterpedia and letting them go. Or I spent some time hunting for resources. Or I decided I wanted a different villager and went on a villager hunt for someone. I didn't end up getting who I wanted but settled with someone else for the time being fully knowing I can try again a different day in the future. Then, later I went villager hunting again and did find the villager I wanted. Currently, I have 4 forever villagers and switching out the rest until im happy with them. Maybe eventually, I'll even switch out my favorites for some new ones, and then reinvite those back at a later date. I'm also reworking on my bakery because I'm trying to make it more detailed. I'm sorry for all the rambling, but I hope that what you get out of reading this mumble jumble is (TL;DR) allowing flexibility is how to keep going on your forever island and not be burnt out.

I see now why people like completing island decorations. I mean, not only because there's only so much room on an island for decorating and number of villagers, but also because, it takes so long to decorate that by the end some players might want to try an entirely new design or theme. I still have 1/4th terraforming left on my island and still decorating all the parts I've "finished" (done terraforming, now just adding flowers and whatnot) and already sort of wishing I had a different entrance. I added some castle walls though and built on my original idea and really like it, so im going to enjoy it for now. I guess that is the beauty of a forever island- it's forever in WIP. Just make sure to take time to appreciate and enjoy your hard work in between and find new motivations. It will never be fully finished. I mean, you may finish what you set out for, but then you will have new goals.
 
Last edited:
Ah, thank you Suguri
I looked it up too before posting my question and just wanted to ask in case it was something else. Or if it was a challenge of some sort..?
Yeah just like Suguri said! Not really a challenge I think, more about switching the style you play in..? It's an island you plan to keep forever, committing to it
Post automatically merged:

Hi there!

I would like to begin with I didn't get a chance to really play ACNL, so I don't know how to compare the games from personal experience, but I wanted to touch on your question about forever islands on ACNH. Will probably be a long reply. Read what you want.

Currently, I'm working on my forever island, probably my 3rd or 4th reset. Although I agree that decorating has become such a huge component for ACNH, I think it is totally do-able to play in other ways as well. Personally, when I first started playing this game four years ago, I didn't start with decoration. I just cataloged and somehow I got really into trying to complete picking up every single item, donating every single creature to the museum, and basically living such a completionist lifestyle. It actually seemed pretty bothersome to decorate. I took a long break from the game when I started back at university and grew tired of playing. However, fast forward to this year, the only reason now that I'm actually finding motivation to decorate and terraform (like you're supposed to) is to complete this forever island. It has been about 4 weeks now and I've accomplished a lot. Now, I know you were asking about playing more so than decorating, so now that you know my backstory, I really could see myself being able to actually play again once I'm majorly done with decoration.

I think one trick is, switching mentality. It's an incorrect assumption or idea that "I have to complete decorating my island before I can play." I'm not saying that's how you think, but I'm associating it to how some humans believe in order to achieve happiness, they must reach a certain point in their life (ie. I'll be happy once I get this done and I've finished this, or once I get married, or once I make this amount of money, etc). So at least, that was my idea in my head, but I've learned that it's possible to take breaks from building or decorating to play. I know a lot of decorators focus solely on decorating because they want to release a DA for their friends and followers or move on to making another island (totally valid way to play the game as well- not talking negatively about that aspect), but for players who like you want to try moving away from decorating as the sole goal, it is totally do-able when you switch mentality.

So, because I've figured out that I don't need to finish all my island first or at a certain time, I've accepted that my island will never be finished. With this acceptance, I've learned the best way to play this game is to switch it up whenever you get burnt out or take breaks from the game when needed. For such a long time, I was playing as much as I could because I was motivated to work on my island terraforming & custom coding. Then, I was stuck with working on a section and didn't play for a day or so, maybe two. Then, I would be motivated again. The other day, I didn't feel like decorating my forever island, and instead would sit with one of my villagers, or explore my unfinished island. I would walk alongside another villager, or stalk them to see their life from their point of view. So, for me, even though I'm nowhere near finished with my first entire island decoration, I'm taking the time to enjoy the game beyond the goals I set for myself. It allows you to appreciate what you've built without growing tired of it. Additionally, hypothetically let's say I finish my island and want to change up my entrance, or I want to change my restaurant to a cafe....or, I want to rebuild an area to represent something else- that's okay too! I think what keeps me from getting completely burnt out is not focusing on 1 goal the entire time I play, but, allowing myself to be motivated with different goals that change.

Like, my major goal is finish my island terraforming the first time around, but my smaller goals consist of gifting my villagers specific outfits, or, creating new outfits. I'll also take time to just browse through Pinterest for custom codes I can switch out possibly. One day, all those goals will change. Especially because with seasons, unfortunately only changing "the path" won't switch everything; not as simple. Maybe I will be lazy and feel like enjoying my villagers without redecorating everything to match the season. Or maybe I will be motivated to switch out decorations too. I think for me, the best guide to playing this game is listening to what you want to do.

I think burnt out is created when you're tired of one thing without allowing the flexibility to explore all the different aspects of this game. On a simple level, this game is advertised talking to villagers, fishing and decorating. However, anyone who's played this game for an extended amount of time knows that there's so much more to this game. There's complexities in the villager personalities, there's cataloging, there's customization, there's collecting, there's building. All the ways you can play this game are allowed- whether it's someone who plays only to fish and minimally decorates, or someone who plays only for decorating; the entire spectrum from one extreme to the other is acceptable. Just because someone plays one way doesn't mean you have to and vice versa. So, if you've focused a lot on decorating and are burnt out, maybe try playing it a different way. Take a break when you want to. Focus on one build if you want to and then don't do another until you feel like it. I think that's helped me.

So, you asked about how has my island grown with me? I've changed my custom designs a few times. I've even combined multiple "the path" versions to make my own Frankenstein walkway...because as nice as it is to have it be just 1 version, there's no rule that says you can't switch it up. I tried to make it cohesive, I think one of the versions I used is a little lighter, but I don't mind it. I made an ice cream shop, and then switched it out for a ramen shop. I figured, why not change things up when I want to? I guess that's the beauty of a forever island. It's not supposed to be made a certain way frozen in time through a DA. It's supposed to be an island that you can do what you want to whenever you want. Re-add, demolish. The purpose isn't to have a whole map made and then start all over, but more so, explore different options, switch it up when you don't like it or want to change. My original ideas have changed. I also made one part of my island Japanese and the other part more cottagecore. Like I said, these mini goals are nice because you finish something like say, a boardwalk with rides and you get the dopamine pleasure of finishing the goal. Then, you get the dopamine to move on to the next. Then maybe, you'll return to that area and do something else. Or like I said, maybe you don't feel like decorating or building and you just want to focus on say, fishing for 100 fish without messing up. Or maybe, you just want to visit villager homes and sit with them until you don't feel like playing the game anymore that day. I've definitely played on days and literally did no work on my island. I just walked around trying to catch insects to fill my critterpedia and letting them go. Or I spent some time hunting for resources. Or I decided I wanted a different villager and went on a villager hunt for someone. I didn't end up getting who I wanted but settled with someone else for the time being fully knowing I can try again a different day in the future. Then, later I went villager hunting again and did find the villager I wanted. Currently, I have 4 forever villagers and switching out the rest until im happy with them. Maybe eventually, I'll even switch out my favorites for some new ones, and then reinvite those back at a later date. I'm also reworking on my bakery because I'm trying to make it more detailed. I'm sorry for all the rambling, but I hope that what you get out of reading this mumble jumble is (TL;DR) allowing flexibility is how to keep going on your forever island and not be burnt out.

I see now why people like completing island decorations. I mean, not only because there's only so much room on an island for decorating and number of villagers, but also because, it takes so long to decorate that by the end some players might want to try an entirely new design or theme. I still have 1/4th terraforming left on my island and still decorating all the parts I've "finished" (done terraforming, now just adding flowers and whatnot) and already sort of wishing I had a different entrance. I added some castle walls though and built on my original idea and really like it, so im going to enjoy it for now. I guess that is the beauty of a forever island- it's forever in WIP. Just make sure to take time to appreciate and enjoy your hard work in between and find new motivations. It will never be fully finished. I mean, you may finish what you set out for, but then you will have new goals.
Wow this was such a joy to read!! I think your thoughts will help me a lot when I get to begin it soon. Gotta appreciate and make the most of everything now, not hold onto later... Happy to hear that you've found a good playstyle for yourself, also cool to know other people are actually doing it instead of it being just a short whim of a new term?

NL was so focused on making every day different for the player with different events, shop upgrades that lasted all the way up til endgame, and for an indecisive person the limitations of it (can't place items outside for example) helped me focus into the things that brought me the most joy. I feel like in NH it's up to the player themself to make the most of it and create the fun instead of finding it..? But maybe I'll return to the roots of befriending villagers and catching bugs 😸

Definitely will get back to read this again later on as well. Thanks for such an insightful deep dive and encouragement, was very comforting (* ´▽` *人 )
 
Last edited:
Wow this was such a joy to read!! I think your thoughts will help me a lot when I get to begin it soon. Gotta appreciate and make the most of everything now, not hold onto later... Happy to hear that you've found a good playstyle for yourself, also cool to know other people are actually doing it instead of it being just a short whim of a new term?

NL was so focused on making every day different for the player with different events, shop upgrades that lasted all the way up til endgame, and for an indecisive person the limitations of it (can't place items outside for example) helped me focus into the things that brought me the most joy. I feel like in NH it's up to the player themself to make the most of it and create the fun instead of finding it..? But maybe I'll return to the roots of befriending villagers and catching bugs 😸

Definitely will get back to read this again later on as well. Thanks for such an insightful deep dive and encouragement, was very comforting (* ´▽` *人 )

Yes! Absolutely no problem! I realized today that I really went on about designing & decorating, even though you were asking about gameplay away from that. So, I guess I was trying to say by combining both parts and deciding which you want to do for the day, it's playing. However, I wanted to reply to what you asked about originally and yeah- I think it will be nice to open the game, listen to Isabelle's daily news intently (instead of rushing to pass it so that I can continue working on my island), check the mail and say hello to one of my villagers. Not that I don't already do that, but, if I'm really motivated to work on my island, I don't really take the time to read letters. Like, when you first start the game, I think that's what you meant by "playing" it right? So, even though I'm not taking the time to do that right now, I'm excited to do that for awhile once I'm finished doing the first round of terraforming. It will be nice :)

You are completely right about NH = it's up to the player themself to create the fun! There's still people every day who just started playing this game and make their island normalcore (who haven't explored the custom design code world and terraforming) and they seem pretty content with just the basics. So, I think it's definitely do-able to do all the fancy/aesthetic stuff and then return to the roots of the game, like you were saying. And if you ever get bored of the basics, explore one of the complexities mentioned above. This is how I see this game lasting. I guess the only reason one would restart again after creating a forever island is due to it being too much time/effort/energy to tear down the entire island terraforming- that's what happened to me last time. I did so much terraforming and wanted something new, so I restarted because it seemed a lot easier than having to demolish everything. Also, I wanted a new fruit. But, if you want to change little areas every so often, I don't see a need to completely restart. Only if the project seems too bothersome.

Anyways, I hope you are able to enjoy your journey. Would love to hear an update if you remember in the future 😊 I'm glad that my experience has helped you!
 
Last edited:
Back
Top