Restarting Your ACNH Island? We’ve Got Design Ideas For You

Many Animal Crossing: New Horizons players, especially those who have had the game since its release over two years ago, have or are thinking of restarting the game, and therefore, their island. There is a lot to consider when restarting, especially what theme the player plans on using. The theme of the island can shape the players desired starter island, villagers, and even the island name. While island themes can easily be changed with redecorating, a player's island name is forever unless they plan on restarting yet again.

Many players are familiar with and use the typical Animal Crossing: New Horizons cores for their themes (e.g. cottage-core, fairy-core, etc.), but with so many different items, players have plenty of options to make their island something special and unique. Players have plenty of space on their island to explore different ideas, and once terraforming is unlocked in ACNH, even more options are available. Players with the Happy Home Paradise expansion can even eventually customize their villagers' houses which can also be useful when theming their island.


Related: Animal Crossing: New Horizons - Goofiest Names To Call Your Island

With so many different options when it comes to restarting an Animal Crossing: New Horizons island, players can become overwhelmed. Starting with a blank slate can be refreshing and can spark creativity, but sometimes players need some design inspiration as well. Restarting can give players a new interest in the game and is a great way to explore new island options.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons Islands Can Go Medieval

Reddit user Naydinfar-Crossing created Ocarina of Time's Hyrule Castle Town in Animal Crossing.

With the 2.0 update and added DLC of Animal Crossing: New Horizons, a lot of castle-themed items were introduced. Previously, players were using random materials to create castles, but with the addition of these items, a castle build is easier than ever. Instead of stopping at just a castle though, players can design their entire island to be Medieval-themed.

Combining handcrafted items with the 'Medieval Building Side' and the Castle collection can create an entire island that goes back in time. Some of the villagers, like Sterling and Knox, are even already dressed for the part. There is even a wide variety of clothing offered at Able's that will fit this theme nicely, including suits of armor and royal crowns.

Animal Crossing Islands Can Take City-Core To A New Level

Animal Crossing Overgrown City Build

With the addition of so many new city-themed items in update 2.0 of Animal Crossing: New Horizons, many players are urbanizing their islands, which could make for a fun city-themed Animal Crossing game. Some players, like YouTuber Ninili, have put a spin on that theme. One of Ninili's previous island builds (she has done quite a few) is an abandoned city. She has created an old factory, an abandoned train station, and even an abandoned airport runway. Exploring this island is a completely different experience than most normal city-core islands, with attention to detail in every corner. For those players who enjoy the city-themed items but don't want something too urban, an overgrown or abandoned city may be the theme they are looking for.

ACNH Players Can Use Seasonal Items To Their Advantage

Animal Crossing Christmas Build

Animal Crossing: New Horizons includes an abundance of seasonal items for multiple holidays, including Bunny Day, Toy Day, Halloween, and even Thanksgiving. Many Animal Crossing villagers also fit the seasonal themes. Players who have a certain time of year that they love can design their island based on their favorite season and holiday. Another of YouTuber Ninili's islands, Oatmeal, is an absolute Winter Wonderland. Holiday Trees, mountain terrain, and even ski slopes grace the island in its full snowy glory.

Related: Animal Crossing's Next Game Must Solve The Series' Boring Event Problem

Players have also used many of the items in-game to have a more spooky island design. With the Halloween items, the 'Western Stone', and the new decayed trees, players can have a haunted graveyard on their island in no time. They can even include the mummy-like Lucky as a current resident in their Animal Crossing island.

Games And Movies Can Inspire Animal Crossing: New Horizons Islands

Many Animal Crossing: New Horizons players find inspiration in their other favorite games. Some players have themes related to different towns from Pokémon games, Stardew Valley, or even Animal Crossing islands with a Legend of Zelda design. With the addition of the Mario items in an early-on update, a Mario-themed island would be an easy addition as well. Finding inspiration from another game is a great and unique way to theme an Animal Crossing island.

Players can also find design inspiration from their favorite films and television shows. Players have created islands based on Harry Potter and Twilight, and there are even Jurassic Park-themed Animal Crossing islands. Some islands have subtle hints to the player's favorites while others encompass the entire island. Using an island to give a twist on a player's favorite film is a great way to find inspiration.

Players Could Make Their Animal Crossing Island Tropical

Animal Crossing Tropical Tiki Bar LJC Island

Starting a new Animal Crossing island has pros and cons, including getting stuck on an island design idea. Many players get so stressed about creating a unique island design that they forget about the most obvious theme: a tropical island. Players are already placed on a deserted island so they may as well keep with that theme and make their own little tropical paradise. Many of the possible villagers, like June and O'Hare, also already fit this theme.

Related: Cursed Animal Crossing Island Designs No Villager Would Want To Stay On

There are plenty of in-game items that players can use to give their island a tropical feel, from bamboo items to tiki torches. Players can even make their own tiki bar or lazy river. Having a vibrant Animal Crossing island in the summer is a great way to use the tropical designs, but players should beware that this theme does not always translate well in the winter.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons - Japanese-Themed Islands

Japanese town garden in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Another island design idea for Animal Crossing players and fans of Japanese folklore that already has a lot of in-game content is a Japanese theme. An island filled with bamboo, samurai statues, and even noodle shops has a certain charm to it. Many clothing items and even house customizations also fit this design. Players can even use include this design with another island theme, like a Japanese-inspired fishing village or a Japanese-inspired city.

With many Animal Crossing: New Horizons players restarting their islands recently, coming up with an island design can be one of the hardest decisions to make. Ultimately, the most important thing about a player's design should be how much the player enjoys it. Even if players decide not to have a specific Animal Crossing island design, restarting can give players a newfound interest in the game, at least until the next game is released.