Although it’s only been on the market for a couple months, that hasn’t stopped the Animal Crossing: New Horizons community from creating some incredibly beautiful islands. The game allows for a degree of freedom not seen in previous titles, and players are letting their imagination run wild — and inspiring others to do the same. Thanks to social media, islands of all shapes and sizes are being shared online for everyone to admire.
We’ve scoured all corners of the internet to pull together a list of the 15 best designs in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. They feature everything from a full-fledged city and a spooky cemetery, to a quaint coffee shop and a simple zen garden. But no matter how unique they are, they all share one thing in common — an eye for great design.
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— marnie ♡ (@kkliIies) April 19, 2020
While many beautiful islands in New Horizons rely on rare items, Twitter user @kklilies has found a way to keep things minimal while bringing out the natural charm of the island. Their town is nothing more than well-designed waterways, wooden plank walkways, and carefully placed trees and flowers. If you have plenty of time on your hands — but lack some of the more valuable items in New Horizons — this is a great island design to try and replicate.
— ボボみ@あつ森 (@imotarez) April 23, 2020
Sometimes you come across an island that looks so different from your own, you wonder if you’re even playing the same game. That’s the case with this masterpiece, which is easily one of the most compact, dense, and gritty urban layouts we’ve ever come across.
— ヒノッチ (@hinopika) April 14, 2020
Making liberal use of custom path designs, this user was able to recreate the visuals from early games in the Pokémon series. It even features a giant Snorlax that is “blocking” the villager’s path.
Another excellent urban design, this island offers players a bit more space to roam about and includes several city blocks full of shops, houses, and public gardens. The amount of zen fencing in this one is staggering — we can’t even imagine how long it took to stockpile enough resources to build it all.
It’s a bit on the scary side for Animal Crossing, but this cemetery is easily one of the coolest things we’ve seen players create. And with the addition of Redd’s sculptures, it’s a bonafide masterpiece. On the bright side, Wisp now has a place to call home!
Finding the right furniture to accent your home can be a frustrating experience. However, this designer shows that you don’t need fancy items to put together a beautiful room. Using simple tables, a few lamps, and lots of picture frames, you can easily replicate this relaxing aesthetic.
— ☆ αshley ☆ (@samanabayisland) April 29, 2020
Summer is right around the corner, but this villager doesn’t want to wait! Not only is their house just steps from the shore, they’ve also found a unique way to use all the seashell-related items in the game to give their corner of the world a washed-out, beachy vibe. Plus, they made great use of custom designs to draw hearts in the sand — how can you not like it?
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i’m not the best at designing yet but I gave it a try! It was very relaxing to put this together. Beau’s Café cookie was my very favorite in Pocket Camp ♡ #ACNH #AnimalCrossingNewHorizons #どうぶつの森 pic.twitter.com/s1w3X4BBue
— ???? ???????????????????????? 公主 ???? (@nookimchi) April 29, 2020
While this design does rely on some rare kitchen furniture, there’s no denying how cozy it is. Accenting the corner bookcases with rustic table stands and flowers pulls the room together, and excellent use of the NookPhone’s camera app makes this shop look incredibly inviting.
— alex ???????? 森 (@faacrossing) April 30, 2020
Sometimes all you need are flowers, trees, and a place to sit. A simple, well-crafted layout goes a long way — and this breezy plaza proves it.
Blathers’ biggest fan
It’s hard to tell what the island looks like on foot, but from the air it’s a sight to behold. While some gamers are struggling to use the new terraforming tools, this player took things to the next level and turned their island into a massive shrine for their favorite museum curator.
Placing sand walkways across the entire island doesn’t sound like an easy feat, but the outcome is truly spectacular. Featuring large swathes of barren desert, this island is pockmarked by oases that harbor villagers, shops, and the occasional pyramid.
We’re not sure if this is good island design, but it sure is hilarious. Visitors to this player’s island are instantly greeted with a series of beds that they need to lie down in before getting to town. All told, it takes an additional 10 seconds to go through the checkpoint — something you won’t want to do after having to deal with the lengthy load times associated with flying on Dodo Airlines.
— Amy ???????????? (@acrossingamy) April 20, 2020
The only drawback to this design is that you can’t play it! Another excellent use of custom paths, this Twitter user found a way to build an entire mini-golf course on their island. Each hole has its own theme — such as Bunny Day, beach, and outer space — and all those unique objects probably go a long way toward raising their island rating.
— John Pirruccello (@PairofCellos) April 17, 2020
While it’s not a true replica, this user pays homage to The Legend of Zelda series by crafting a mini dungeon that would be right at home in Hyrule. Players encounter a “boss” once they reach the end, but it probably won’t be dropping any Heart Containers when defeated.
Simple in design — yet elegant in execution — this tiny zen garden is the perfect place to escape from your daily island troubles. Most of the items seen here can be easily crafted but are arranged in a tasteful way that somehow manages to pack in a lot of content without overcrowding the space.
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