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How to spot fake art in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Jolly Redd is a lovable yet difficult character in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. On the one hand, Tom Nook warns us to never interact with him. On the other, Blathers loves the artwork you bring after visiting. Redd will happily trick your younger sibling or your grandparents into buying something they don’t need. Jolly Redd should find himself behind bars, but now he finds himself on a boat, heading to your island.

New Horizons is already the most successful entry in the entire franchise. It’s also the most extensive release by far, adding intricacies on top of familiar challenges.
how to plant money tree animal crossing new horizons glowing spot

You’ll need to find a way to utilize Redd in order to keep from falling for his schemes. Although he does carry a lot of art forgeries, there are usually at least one or two gems in his collection that Blather will melt over. But how can you decide when Redd is selling a fake or a real-deal work of art? Here’s how.

When does Redd appear? — How to get art in Animal Crossing

Animal Crossing Redd location unlock and times
Image used with permission by copyright holder

You first have to speak to Blathers in the museum after updating your game. He’ll mention how the museum has grown over time and express an interest in expanding its collection into fine art and paintings. It’ll only happen if you’ve donated 60 unique items to the effort, but so long as you’ve been keeping up with your daily fossil haul since launch day, you should have done more than enough to kick-start the initiative.

With that particular event flag triggered, the stage will be set for Redd to show up in the near future with a couple of these paintings to pass off to you. The first time he appears, he’ll be wandering around town ready to scam any old sucker.

While he’s strolling around ashore, he’ll offer you a painting for an eye-watering 498,000 Bells, but you can tempt him down to a modest 4,980 with a few choice words. Unlike the rest of his goods, this first purchase is guaranteed to be a legitimate work of art, and exactly the kind of item that will push Blathers to open up the museum’s art exhibition should you donate it.

After this choice first encounter, Redd will appear periodically like Leif, Label, and Kicks. You’ll find his Treasure Trawler ship down on the secret beach over the north cliff of your island. You might want to bring a ladder (and a few hundred thousand Bells).

How to identify fake paintings

Animal Crossing Redd fake paintings
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Just like in past titles, many of Redd’s fine works of art aren’t the real deal. He’s a con artist that specializes in selling worthless fakes for a lot of money. But while the vast majority of his wares would ruin Blathers’ reputation as a curator of wonders, some of his goods are legit. You can only buy one each time he comes around, so knowing how to spot a fake will save you a lot of heartache.

As the reveal video showed, you’re free to inspect anything Redd sells before you pull the trigger. You can zoom in real close to look for any abnormalities in whatever it is he happens to be selling. The thing is, the paintings he offers aren’t original to the Animal Crossing series. They’re real works of art.

In the digital age, that means all you have to do to quickly and easily tell the two apart is to search the internet for the real thing and play a game of spot the difference. Find the painting that matches up perfectly to its real-world counterpart, and you’ll have yourself a work of art that Blathers will proudly display in the museum’s new wing. Hoo hooray!

Previous renditions of the game had Redd offer at least one real painting per visit. In New Horizons, Redd switches things up. Unfortunately, it’s been noticed that sometimes, he appears on your island with only fakes. Other times, he may show up with more than one real work of art. It’s important to try to remember what you’ve already collected as well because sometimes the real painting he shows off is one you’ve already collected.

What does else does Redd sell?

Animal Crossing Jolly Redd shop
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Crazy Redd, or Jolly Redd as he goes by now, deals in the fancy and the fake. He’s out to become a bellionaire selling forgeries, but he has a few things actually worth your time, too. Besides paintings and sculptures, Jolly Redd’s Treasure Trawler has a few unique furniture items on sale. These items are usually in colors that your island doesn’t carry, though the price he demands is often far higher than they’re worth.

What to do with Redd’s fake items

If someone happened to persuade you into purchasing one of Redd’s copies, the truth is – there isn’t much you can do with them. Blathers understands that showcasing replicas in his reputable institution is a big no-no. The Nooklings would willingly purchase weeds rather than step into the dangerous world of the black market.

You have the opportunity to either hide and store any undesired products in your home warehouse to collect digital dust, publicize them inside if you are one of the few who actually relish Redd’s novel takes on fine art, or throw them in your trash never to be seen again.

Don’t get your hopes up; you won’t be receiving your cash back if you fall for Redd’s schemes, but his fakes aren’t entirely stripped of appeal.

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Josh Brown
Josh Brown is a UK-based freelancer with devoted interests in video games, tech, film, and anime/manga. Just don't talk to…
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