Winter!: Prepare for holiday gaming!
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Dubbed as a "communication game" by Nintendo, Animal Crossing creates a virtual community of which the player is but a single member. Players begin by naming their character and town, and then setting the date before moving into their new Animal Crossing settlement. The town's denizens are talking animals, and the emphasis is placed on making friends and creating a virtual life.
By using the GameCube's real-time clock, the game reflects actual time of day or night. Play at six in the morning, for example, and many characters will still be asleep, while others will be getting a jump-start on their day. Holidays are celebrated and the world changes accordingly, with lights hanging on trees at Christmas, for instance. Certain in-game events will only occur at specific times during the day, and some characters will only appear at set intervals.
As with everyday life, characters need to get a job in order to make the money needed to purchase new items for their house as well as pay off loans. Using the Nintendo GameCube — Game Boy Advance Cable, players will be able to design new textures and outfits on the handheld and transfer them back to the GameCube so they appear in the game. Animal Crossing can also be played by up to four players, though not simultaneously. Others can visit and leave notes and items for the primary player.
The game also provides a host of events and things to do to keep players occupied. Catching bugs and fish could yield some extra cash, but time might be better spent on planting fruit trees or perhaps forging new relationships with some of the neighbors. Faithful reproductions of NES games can also be collected, played, and transferred to the Game Boy Advance, including Donkey Kong, Ice Climber, Baseball, Punch-Out!!, Pinball, and Excitebike. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide