Yeppers, a boring old post about maps 🙂 I’ve been scrounging around for tidbits on AC: New Leaf since it came out on the 8th November in Japan, and there’s not much out there yet in terms of tidbits, but I think I’ve got the (very) basics of how the maps work, which is a start. And totally useless too, considering you can’t control how it turns out 😆

Here’s the map from one of the promotional screenshots.

The main features of your town map are the River, Tree, Townhall and R.Parkers (I think that’s what the looping pink arrows are…), which take up entire “acres” in your town and can’t share with one another. The train station is always in that spot and also doesn’t share. Meanie.

All the other houses, yours included, seem to work themselves out around these, and they can share acres with the larger landmarks.

As for the acres, 4 x 5 worked perfectly, starting below the railway.
Here are are a few examples. I also hoarded some map screenshots by other people on Japanese blogs ^^;

As you can see, you can get a town that faces east as well.
Also, all the rivers start in the cliff wall on the left or right side of your town, and it seems you can’t get peninsulas in this version (nor islands).
On the plus side, it looks like you can plonk your own house down wherever you want, on whichever acre :mrgreen:

For some reason, when AC:NL gets localised, I’d like my tree to be on the southern side of the river, as well as my house. (Less pollution? :P) But I also don’t want the tree to be at the cliff wall, so that means I probably wouldn’t get a long winding river. At the same time I’d be looking out for that square grass I’ve always wanted, so in the end I would probably give up trying to get everything right xP

Oh well, plenty of time to think about it ^_^
Edit: Some random stuff to add 😛

Now that I’ve spent more time getting to know the AC:NL map features, I’ve got a better idea of how I want my town to be (or at least what I’ll be resetting for).

The map sketches are some river shapes I was trying out (for towns facing either way). The rule for all of them was that the town tree would be on the southern side of the river and away from the town wall. The 3rd drawing was my original plan, but now the river’s not windy enough for me 🙂 There were many more options available when I gave up having the tree in the centre.

As for the bottom sketch, that’s where I’d like my house to be 🙂 I still have no idea where it is, but I want it to be in the bend of a river. I wasn’t sure of the size ratio while drawing it so it could be off. I’m also not sure if there are any rules for placing your house. I saw examples of the player’s house sharing acres with buildings, but I don’t know if there are predetermined empty lots at the start of a new town for townies to move into or other obstacles like that.

Also, R. Parkers.  It’ll be a wonderful shop to have, but I’d like that gaudy little pink thing to be on the northern side of the river, with the train tracks 😆 (And that wouldn’t be possible in the 2nd town sketch.)

Aaand now onto the nit-picky stuff that I wouldn’t reset for but would be nice to have:

The wide little patch of beach 🙂 It would be totally useless, but I would make the beach a bit more interesting.


I don’t want any inaccessible beaches! >_< I could be misunderstanding something (like maybe they are accessible some way?) but I hate seeing a place I want to explore in a game, but can’t reach xP

And now some funny little maps I saw while “researching” 😛


I tried to work out all the river formations.

I gave up quickly.


22 responses to “Map

  1. The title Animal Crossing: New Leaf is new to me, I was only familiar with “Jump Out.” I think the New Leaf title is perfect! “Turning over a new leaf” is such a common idiom, and it sounds like this Animal Crossing game will do just that with all the changes they’re making, so it’s very appropriate.

    Thanks a lot for doing this post on AC:3DS maps! Information about what makes individual towns unique is definitely valuable, now I have a better idea of what to look for when choosing a town! If you find any more important features that vary between towns (like are villagers’ house styles unchangeable or can you edit them as the mayor? This one looks interesting…), feel free to let me know or post on it. xP

    It looks like river shape, as usual, is an important varying feature, as well as the number of ponds — I see several different shapes and sizes of ponds, too. They remind me of AC:CF’s, the ponds can be a lot bigger in that game compared to Wild World’s. The lack of river-formed islands simplifies things a bit; I know a lot of people reset over and over so that they can get the perfect island shape, or one with their house on it. But I’m still going to reset, I’ll have to think about what I want my town to be like (in general I like curvy, winding rivers and lots of ponds). At least now you have control over where your house goes! That’s awesome, I think I’ll probably put mine near the waterfall. Or near a pond/lake/cliff wouldn’t be bad… Do you know where you’re going to put your house?

    It sounds like you already have some general ideas of what you want the town layout to be like. ^_^ I don’t think I’d want the tree to be near the cliff wall either, it would be nice if the tree was near the center of town like in the second map in that foursome. I thought you liked triangle grass best like me! 😛 But I’m glad you like square grass as well, I don’t think it gets much love from what I’ve seen on various forum threads, but it’s what I have in my Wild World town.

    • Yeah, New Leaf is perfect! I was really happy when they announced that as the official English title. The image of the leaf has also been persistent throughout the series.

      Haha, when I first saw that house I thought it looked like a big chimney sticking up from the ground :D. There are already Japanese bloggers who have worked out things like all the character options, and there are pictures here and there of different house styles and customisations. (I would feel like I was just taking their credit if I reposted their findings, though, especially since I can’t get my own pictures at this stage. And also I don’t know what they’re saying in the first place, lol :P) I thought this person’s blog was very nice. The upper pink list on the lefthand side is her Recent Posts, and her 4 earliest AC:NL posts (ending in とびだせどうぶつの森 or just とび森) cover character faces, train station + town hall colours, fruits, and ground textures which I’ve linked. (Also I learned from another blog that the town hall interior colouring depends on the exterior.)

      There are surprisingly few possibilities for the ideal town map once you’ve decided where you hope to have your tree, and what type of river to have (short, long, windy). There’s only so many bends your river can do before you run out of acres for the shop and town hall. As such, I was quickly down to a single sketch when I was trying to draw my perfect town layout. And that means it’d be preeetty hard to hit that perfect layout 😛 Funnily enough I don’t really know where I want my house :/

      Oh I still think triangle grass is the perfect grass (because grass is triangular-ish :P), and square snow is just right too, cos it’s not cluttery like star snow but more interesting than circle. But, I don’t know… sometimes I really like the way square grass in AC:WW fans out like tiled mosaics. There’s a pattern to it that the other two don’t have for me. But also since I’ve had both triangle and circle, I do really want square soon 🙂

  2. I’ve been looking through the tumblr AC3DS tag, but I’ve mostly just seen pictures from new towns and people not from Japan expressing wishes that they could play it, no informational guides like that. What a helpful blog, thanks for the link!

    Even though I already have my favorite grass shapes, it’s good to see what they’ll look like in this game. I like triangle grass best partly because the shapes are smaller; if they made the triangles as big as the circles or squares I probably wouldn’t like it so much. Stars makes the snow look sparkly and festive, and it’s such a unique shape compared to the others, so it’s one of my favorite shapes too. But I like all the grass shapes (I see what you mean about the interesting pattern for square grass/snow, and I think circle grass/snow is fun), so which grass I want mostly depends on how I want my town to look and feel, how I want to decorate it, etc. AC:3DS has more realistic graphics and more ways to make landscaping look realistic, so I’ll probably shoot for triangle grass. The Autumn grass looks gorgeous, such a bright gold! The trees are really bright, too, I’ve really admired the vibrant Fall colors in everyone’s pictures. I guess it will (hopefully) be the lush green spring grass when we get the game?

    The town hall and train station differences are interesting! In AC:GC the train stations had different styles, so I thought it might be the same for this game, but the town hall is a pretty big surprise! It’s something potentially worth resetting for if you strongly prefer one of the designs, but for me none of them stand out as being either particularly amazing or dreadful. 😛 It’s not like City Folk with the barn/castle/pink gates that were drastically different, these are more neutral and natural looking. If I had to choose, I think I like the town hall best that resembles the ones from AC:WW and AC:CF most, with the muted, dull browns and greys, but I don’t know about the train station… What are your thoughts on them, do any of them stand out to you? Would you reset for one you really liked, or not keep a town because of getting one of the designs?

    Yeah, I see what you mean about the limited possibilities. No river-formed island, and I think there are more buildings that take up a whole acre this time, like those pink arrow things (do you know what those are? :?) and the tree, so there are possibly less acre spaces for the river to zig-zag. Something like this appeals to me, but I don’t know if it’s possible and I’m open to other map set-ups with less curvy rivers. Sorry for writing another essay! >_< This stuff interests me a lot because in the past I've reset quite a bit to find (near) perfect towns.

    • Hahahaha, awesome map! 😆 I think it’s perfectly possible: link 🙂 I’m pretty sure those pink arrows are R.Parkers (name in Japanese version), the new shop that recycles and lets you customise furniture. It seems like it’s the only shop not placed in the commercial area.

      I’m actually having trouble deciding on the town hall and station 😛 And I’m kind of hoping you can change options later, but I don’t know anything about it :/ I like both the standard town hall and the one with dark blue, and as for the station I think I like the blue one best o_o Usually I’d go for red or brown immediately but somehow the red and brown stations here lack the usual cosiness I choose those colours for. I would probably reset but only after I confirm that the colours are permanent 😛 (edit: Some people are saying you can change the town hall colours, according to Nintendo Direct!)

      I would love it if we could get AC:NL before the cherry blossom festival >_< That would be such a nice welcome to the game :mrgreen: From a few pics I saw here and there, it looks like Japan might have started off with the event for the Mush furniture set. I wonder if they picked mushrooms…

      edit: After looking it up, it seems like occasionally while picking mushrooms one will turn out to be a Mush furniture, so there’s no event. It’s only in Autumn, though.
      Oh and no comment about Animal Crossing is an essay by my book xD

      • Yay, love the curvy rivers! 😛 This is one of my favorites I’ve come across in Wild World, and I’m glad something similar is possible in New Leaf, only the waterfall is placed differently.

        Ohh okay, so R. Parkers is the new shop… I see it’s pink with a heart on the door and a blue roof, much different from the Nook’s Cranny shack. 😛 I wonder if it’ll upgrade at all like Nook’s did or if it will always be like that. I really hope you’ll be able to change the exterior of the town hall, train station, and villager houses! If they’re permanent, I can reset for ones I want as usual, but it would be nice to just focus on the grass shape and the map this time, wouldn’t it? xP I’m curious how the house styles work; when you glance through pictures people take of their towns, it’s easy to see there’s a huge variety, I hardly see any repeats. This person specifically took pictures of all their neighbors’ houses and they’re all so different. I wonder if they’re completely customizable and not like the old permanent house styles at all.

        I was hoping that too! I think the cherry blossom festival is usually in April, so we might just miss it if comes out in May or June. 😦 The mushroom collecting was the same in City Folk, it would’ve been nice to have had the festival again. But Tortimer’s not the mayor anymore so there would be no Cornimer, I guess.

        Wow, I love all the new information in this post and your sketches! The house close to a river bend and bridge does look beautiful and cozy, perfect to have a little garden surrounded on two sides by water. 🙂 I didn’t think much about varying beach areas, but that wide patch of beach would be cool to have. Maybe some of the ramps vary too, I know some people would reset for certain interesting ramps in City Folk. I doubt there would be any completely inaccessible beaches because you can swim now, but it would be easier to just have well-placed ramps.

        I was thrilled when I saw this picture: a candy house, it’s a dream come true for me! :mrgreen: Look at that candy cane mailbox! 😛 The colorful square fence is cute too, and the flowers seem to come in more variety and they look great in bunches of four. Also love the blue hair and sparkly oval eyes in blue! Ahh, I’m so excited about this game, it’s won me over before I’ve even played it.

        • LOL, I forgot you can swim!!! I completely forgot xD That’s awesome, in that case I would love to get a beach you could access only by swimming xP

          Thanks for that blog link, that’s a really nice blog! It’s great to finally have an English-speaking player who also understands what’s going on in the game ^^; I’ve already learnt of a bunch of new features from their blog that have definitely won me over now, too x3 Hearing about townies actively helping improve the town by picking weeds, watering flowers and making donations really makes the town come alive.

          Haha, it’s like that candy theme was made just for you! 😀 Nintendo really went out of their way this time to cater to the player’s needs and everyone’s interests. I really appreciate their promise too, to not have any paid downloadable content for AC, as tempting as it must be for them.

          EDIT: Wowww, this is great! Look at this video from around 2:08 when they are choosing a town! I was actually entertaining the thought earlier that Nintendo might do this, and thought, “No way, that’s definitely wishful thinking”, and… wow, now I’m blown away xD

        • Yeah, that might be kind of cool in a way — maybe a little inconvenient to get to that particular beach, but it would be like a *secret* beach. 😛

          I thought that blog was great too, really in-depth! I might’ve learned more from that single blog than from browsing the AC3DS tag on tumblr.

          Oh wow, so you can choose your own layout! Can you keep saying “no, that’s not it” forever or do you only get 3 options? And what if you say “no, that’s not it” to the first map just so that you can see the later maps too? Will you able to go back and select the first map if you actually liked that best, or is the “no, that’s not it” permanent? I’m curious about those little details, but overall excited about the multiple options for a town layout, hopefully this will make resetting easier for us! 😀

  3. Pingback: AC: New Leaf musings and town name ideas | A Forest Life·

  4. Do you think the waterfalls that are on the side beaches are less visible than the waterfalls that fall onto the bottom beaches? I love a pretty waterfall and would love a clear view of mine.

    • Thanks for asking that, I hadn’t really thought about it before. I think the answer is that it depends on the waterfall shape you get. I think this picture illustrates it nicely. In some ways I think the side-on waterfall is actually more impressive, if you get one on a good angle. As you can see, you can’t always get a good view of the waterfalls that are on the bottom beaches, because they might not fit on your screen unless you move further back.

  5. I think I already know the map shape i want it to have! Also, for the “inaccessible” beaches.. I think we could swim across it and let it be our little private beach? xD

    I’m wondering if you can still put patterns on beaches and you can decorate the ‘private beach’ to your liking? xD

    • Yeah, totally forgot about swimming when I wrote that xD Private beaches are awesome!

      I haven’t paid attention to patterns, but you can’t put public works or houses on the beach. You can still of course plant palm trees and flowers there, so it can look quite nice.

      • I wish to have a private beach on the dream map I have, sad we don’t have those ‘islands’ anymore. 😛

        Oh yeah! I’m excited on planting new fruits! Bananas and Coconuts will definitely fit a beach. 😛 I haven’t seen all new fruits yet but the ‘delicious fruit’ sounds interesting (might cost a thousand bells if you sell it? 😀 )

        • Haha, I answered it earlier before I saw this reply 😛 Delicious/perfect fruit sell for 600 bells in your own town, or 3000 bells in another town! You’re welcome to sell in my town if we don’t get the same fruit 😀
          (You can only get perfect fruit for your native fruit.)

          Hehe, there’s some funny fruit in this version: tomato-lookalike persimmons and spikey durians xP I wonder if they’ll keep those in the localisation.

  6. O: You know you can still access the private beaches by swimming. That is why I want one on my map 😀 it can be my own private area to store things or hang out by. ^^ And bye the way I like how u are seriously planning out you town map. I’m doing the same. i want to have my own seclusive place to put my house and i want my town hall to be close to my main tree. either the town hall being exactly on the left or above it. 😛 and it has to be no matter wait a map with the beach on the right o.0 it just has to be for some reason. But yeah 🙂 I can’t wait to get my 3ds so i can download it. i had to send it in for repair because of a camera defect. But anyway sorry if my message is too long but good luck ^_^

    • Yeah I totally forgot you could swim to it in NL when I wrote that xP Even though I tried to plan it out carefully, getting the town you want is a whole other story x_x I’m resetting for my town as I’m typing this… (and it’s been a whiiiile :P).
      Ugh, too bad about having to repair a defect >.< Was it still covered by warranty? Good luck to you too when you get your copy! Tell me how it goes ^^

  7. Ah I see. :O that great and yes my 3ds was still under waranty. thank goodness o.0. it is actualy being sent back now :O >.> trying to patiently wait it out 😉 but anyway I think my search for a map is over matter of fact right after I had type that message I think I found the map I want to have. It’s here if you want to look 😀

    Ah it so perfect >.< i want to either put my house at the top of the map in the corner between the right water fall and red bridge or below the left water fall. now I just need to figure out what to name my town. <:)
    i hope you find your map soon as well. O: I can also send you some links too some websites that have some town layouts as well if you still haven't found them yet :). GOOD LUCK!

    • LOL, that’s just like my map (which I finally got yesterday)! Except my beach is on the other side :mrgreen: I wasn’t extremely fussed about the map shape, more about getting the station, town hall and fruit types I wanted, which is why it took a while.
      Maybe you don’t need it anymore, but here’s a great picture of all the possible maps. I found it on a Japanese blog.

  8. Ah 😀 I see but actually I had found that chart about a week ago. And it helped out alot for the river pattern I had wanted^^ but i still needed to look at the real maps to find out the placement of the tree and etc. But I see you found your map too already that great. I don’t really mind or care about which fruit it is but I would prefer apples or peaches! really don’t want cherry’s as my town fruit though. 😀 Well good luck once again on your town i bet it beautiful. I can’t wait to start up on mine which I’m sure isn’t to far away from happening. ^_^

    • Heehee, my town fruit is cherries 😛 I wanted either apples (perfect apples look so beautiful) or cherries, because I wanted a red fruit to suit my overall town theme.

  9. Hey! I started a new file (well I lost my DS with my game IN it so I had no choice) this time without time travelling. I actually restarted it several times (3 days) until I got a town I actually liked (with apples) The secret beaches (beaches without slopes) are accessible but you need the wet suit. (My town has a small one)

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