Let’s take a look at Animal Crossing: Amiibo Festival. I was very apprehensive with playing this game at first since I had only seen negative reviews but I have to say, I feel everyone is missing the point of this game. It’s a really cute virtual board game that I think very much deserves a place in the Wii U’s library.

I feel like most people go into this game expecting a Mario Party game and that’s where the problems begin. This game is nothing like Mario Party’s competitive, fast-paced play style. Amiibo Party is a medium-paced E-board game that is similar to life or, in some ways, Monopoly.  It’s actually a very well put together E-board game and it even adds in a few mini games you can buy with Happy Tickets you earn by just playing the board game.  The amiibo part isn’t really that bad either since the game itself comes with Digby and Isabelle and 3 villager amiibo cards.  You can use all amiibo and earn points to get new costumes for your favorite Animal Crossing characters as an additional purchase.

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From the official trailer: Event spaces.

This game plays very strangely to say the least.  Your goal is to get happy points to win the game, which you gain by landing on the most happy spaces or having a lot of Bells.  Bells are the currency in Animal Crossing that transfers over to this game and every 1,000 Bells is worth one happy point at the end of the game.  There are also gyroids on each corner of the map that give you a stamp that reveals a picture and if you can make it around you get bonus happy points with each stamp.  There are, however, unhappy spaces that you can land on that are purple and can cause you to lose all of your money or get stung by a bee and be less happy.  Seems simple, right?

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From the official Trailer: Money Space.

Now we introduce the events!  The events are ever changing and what make this game pop.  The board itself does not change (unless you use happy points to edit it later on).  The month does in fact change though and you can choose which one to play in to cause different events to appear. Normally there are events that play when you land on a space saying why you got happier, but on certain days, like the 25 of December, characters will appear and give you happy points if you land on their space.  When events activate they change the board spaces to event spaces and can take up every space on the board for events like a tournament.  There will then be green, silver, and gold spaces you can land on to increase your chances of winning.

This all seems kind of random, so is there any strategy involved?  YES, THERE IS!  Every Sunday, you are allowed to gamble your money on the stalk market.  The stalk market is where you buy bunches of turnips for an ever-changing price from Joan.  Through the rest of the week, every space has a turnip price you can sell for but the market can rise or crash at any turn.  On top of the stalk market, you have several chances that will appear to buy or get cards that let you pick how many spaces to move by paying a small fee.  About once a week Redd’s shop can pop up and you can choose a card to purchase or Katie will visit and you can land on her space to trade or play a game for a card.

Should I get this game?  If you like board games, then it’s great!  I tested this play through with 2 other people who had little and no experience with Animal Crossing and they both thoroughly enjoyed it.  The mini games however are more geared toward Animal Crossing fans themselves so they may be a little confusing for others, but the core game is completely welcoming to new and old fans.  I would especially recommend getting this game for around $35 as I do feel $60 is little much.

How do you guys feel about Amiibo Festival?