Welcome to Nintendo Support

Get support for your Nintendo systems, software and services

How to Start a New Game (Animal Crossing: New Horizons)

The information in this article will help you set up a new game in Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

Important

  • Character and island names can be seen by other players during local or online multiplayer modes. Never include offensive language or personally identifying information in your name.
  • Character names, island names and birthdays cannot be changed after you confirm them.

Note: There is one island per Nintendo Switch console. Once the island has been created, any additional players on the same console (up to 8 total) will all live on the same island.

Complete these steps

Are you setting up a new island or adding a resident to an existing island?

  1. When you first launch the game, you will meet Timmy and Tommy, who will go over some information about the island.
  2. Use the onscreen keyboard to enter a name for your character. Select Confirm, then OK.
  3. Select a month and day for your birthday. Select Confirm, then OK.
  4. When prompted to "Choose your style", choose either picture to get started. Adjust your character's appearance in whatever way you'd like.
    • All character features (like hairstyles) are available regardless of which picture you choose to begin with.
    • Once you've played through the game for a bit, you will be able to change your character's appearance whenever you'd like to.
  5. When you're happy with your character, select Confirm, then OK.
  6. When asked where you live, use the onscreen options to narrow down the region and hemisphere where you want your island. (If a region isn't displayed, choose Elsewhere for more options.)
    • Remember that seasons are reversed for regions in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. In other words, summertime for countries in the Northern Hemisphere (like Canada) is wintertime for countries in the Southern Hemisphere (like Australia), and vice versa.
  7. Use the onscreen pictures to choose a layout for your island, then select OK.
  8. Answer Timmy and Tommy's remaining question to board the plane to your new island.
  9. When you arrive on the island, follow Timmy and Tommy to the plaza and talk to Tom Nook. Follow the characters' directions to set up your tent and build a campfire.
  10. When prompted to choose a name for the island, use the onscreen keyboard to enter a name. Select Confirm, then OK.
  11. After the villagers agree on the name, talk to Tom Nook again for your cot, then return to your tent. Place your cot in the tent and sleep for the night.
  12. In the morning, leave your tent and speak to Tom Nook again for some additional items and information. Then explore and enjoy your island!
  1. When you first launch the game, you will meet Timmy and Tommy, who will go over some information about the island.
  2. Use the onscreen keyboard to enter a name for your character. Select Confirm, then OK.
  3. Select a month and day for your birthday. Select Confirm, then OK.
  4. When prompted to "Choose your style", choose either picture to get started. Adjust your character's appearance in whatever way you'd like.
    • All character features (like hairstyles) are available regardless of which picture you choose to begin with.
    • Once you've played through the game for a bit, you will be able to change your character's appearance whenever you'd like to.
  5. When you're happy with your character, select Confirm, then OK.
  6. When you arrive on the island, Tom Nook will give you a NookPhone and put a tent in your inventory. Find a nice spot on the island and build your tent. Then explore and enjoy your island!