The franchises we know have gone through many moments of evolution. Consider Zelda, which took a major turn with the release of Ocarina of Time in 1998. Or Pokemon, whose combat system was forever changed when Ruby and Sapphire were released, which introduced double battles. Call of Duty strayed far from “classic” battles with the release of Modern Warfare. Resident Evil 4 took the franchise in a much more dynamic direction. In the case of Animal Crossing: New Horizons, this also represents a major change.
In an interview with La Vanguardia, a Spanish video game medium. director Aya Kyogoku spoke about the game she has directed: Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Kyogoku commented that:
I consider Animal Crossing: New Horizons to be the start of the third generation in the series. The first Animal Crossing had no online gaming features and was built around communication using asynchronous gaming in an environment without an internet connection. Online features were added with Animal Crossing: Let’s Go to the City and it was possible to play together. In New Horizons, because you start out from not having the normal Animal Crossing village, there are a lot of changes even if you play alone. We’ve also added a mode called Party Play where you can play with people who live on the same island simultaneously, rather than asynchronously.
It is an interesting division of the franchise that had not been raised until now. The first two games, the Nintendo 64 and the Nintendo GameCube did not work online. The franchise changed a lot with Wild World and City Folk, which introduced the ability to play with friends in an online dimension. Now with New Horizons, it is possible to share with users locally.