It has been almost three weeks since we’ve been confined to our homes due to the Corona virus pandemic. We work from home, we read at home, we Netflix and chill at home. Home is everything.

To beat boredom we have tried many things. From streaming all our shows, to playing board games, drawing, writing and many other activities. One of the things that has brought a fair amount of joy and relaxation in these dark days is Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

This game for the Nintendo Switch launched just as the quarantine became a necessity here in NYC. Talk about perfect timing, Nintendo!

Real Life is hard right now, virtual life is awesome!

As we continue to play it safe and wait inside our homes, all of the great things that we enjoy have been taken away from us. No social gatherings, sporting events, shopping, dining and so much more. All that is gone for the moment which makes life difficult.

Nintendo’s perfect timing in releasing Animal Crossing during this time is welcome. The game consists of you playing a character which is placed inside a deserted island with two other animals. You are all given a tent and natural resources. You also share the island with Nook, his two sons who demand you work for your tent, house, and supplies.

I won’t bore you with every detail, but you get to spend time in a virtual world, chatting with other inhabitants, picking weeds, paying off your loan(s) and making your island look awesome. It brings a level of escape and excitement that for a moment makes you forget the real world we live in.

Slow and easy

The game’s pace is unlike any game I’ve ever played. There are no enemies to shoot, a race to finish or a puzzle to solve. The game can be played quickly (a few minutes at a time) or you can play for hours. The game mimics real life day and hour, so when it’s day outside, it’s day in the game, and night when it’s night out.

There will also be events for the game (the first one is Easter (though they don’t call it that)) which will give you activities to complete and you can win clothing, furniture and other goodies for your home and island. Nothing is forced on you, so you can ignore it if you like.

I have never been the kind of person to play these types of games. I like NBA 2K, MBL At Bat, and action shooters for the most part. But even though I have always enjoyed gaming, this game is perfect for everyone! Not only because it’s different, but because it’s the perfect game during this pandemic.

Life should be this joyful

people enjoy the ability to escape real life by entering the world of entertainment. We watch fiction movies that helps us escape reality for a moment, we listen to music that can send our minds to another world, and we play games that helps us escape reality. Why? Because the world we live in is often not very good. Don’t get me wrong, there are good moments in life that bring joy. There are also awful and terrible things that brings stress, pain and grief. Most, we cannot control. So when we have the chance to escape reality, even for a bit, it’s a welcome part of life.

Animal Crossing New Horizons is bringing joy when it’s desperately needed. Though I live 2 miles away from the heart of New York City’s Corona virus ground zero, my family and I have avoided infection. While our lives have been interrupted and the rug has been pulled from under our feet, we wait and hope this is behind us soon. We will continue to do our best to find small moments of joy and escape this hard world. Even if that includes losing ourselves in a digital game that provides a world much better than ours.