A welcoming start to terraforming…

…literally! I started with my island entrance…which welcomes guests. Get it? Haha…

So I know in hindsight it feels like such a brief period of time, but the few short days before and after unlocking terraforming felt like a depressing eternity of not knowing exactly what I wanted to do with my island. I didn’t have a concept or a theme. It was easy to pick out furniture I liked or plants that looked pretty to decorate little spots here or there, but on a grander scheme to give direction to something like terraforming, I had no concept, so I had no direction.

In the end though, I did come up with a concept, and it felt sooo good to have one! At the time of writing this, said concept is still in the process of coming to fruition on my island, so I don’t want to be too specific. Suffice it to say, my town would have two parts, one Zen themed and the other just…whatever I want (so basically think New Leaf Arcadia). The Zen area would be nestled within my island. It also gave me a good idea of which villagers I wanted.

This was my map current map. No terraforming except for a bit of tiling by the airport and town hall.

After coming up with a concept, I had a better feel for what sort of atmosphere I wanted for my island, and that helped me decide on how to do my island entrance.

A last photo to show the view from the island entrance. There’s the little fenced area to swap gifts with my partner, the pond (left of that was Bam’s house), the town hall plaza to the right, and a whole load of flat nothing in between.

I didn’t feel the need for my island entrance to be particularly grandiose. When I thought about it, an exit onto a seaplane dock wasn’t a particularly important place in comparison to the rest of town, so it didn’t make sense to me to make it too extravagant. I also had the town hall location to consider. Everything was close, flat and open.

I decided to build a bit of a tree-lined path to the airport, with an offshoot to the area with the town hall and shops. Almost like a quiet path on the edge of town that you only take if you need to and know it’s there.

And it worked out pretty nicely! I tried visualising and planning beforehand, even using an online modelling tool made for New Horizons maps, but in the end the best way was to just try it out and see. In an effort to give the town hall some privacy, I built some taller cliff features to block it from view of the airport. The cliff continued on either side of the path, since the rest of the area was going to be on the second tier. In the end it all really gave that cozy vibe I was going for. I put two marketplace banners by the side path to hint at the town plaza area beyond.

Not the best picture to illustrate the airport entrance, but I’m sure there’s plenty more to come. It was cute to see villagers come to walk down the path like they were going to take a plane somewhere.

The morning after building the entrance way and cliffs…

Rodeo, honey, it’s not finished! 😂
He could have sat anywhere else on the island, but Rodeo chose to sit here, on the edge of my sloppy blatantly unfinished manmade cliffs, to admire the view :’) And eat his donut.

A view of the path from higher up. I nestled some stone stairs into the rock at the end. Maybe eventually I could put a couple of stone lanterns by the foot of the stairs to add a bit of a cozy spot.

☺️ (By the way aren’t those colours gorgeous on her?)

So I had basically built over half my pond to make way for the path. While my plan was to raise my island by a level, that didn’t mean I wanted to remove everything in its wake. I was already attached to my pond, and to be quite honest it was one of the nicest places on my island at that point. My solution was to build over the rest of it……and then replicate the entire pond on the higher level!

It was funny and sad at the same time to watch as Bubbles remained determined to fish from the pond, moving to chase after the last remnants of it as I filled it in. And from the upper tier no less!

The last of the pond! I was starting to see where this was going…

Yep I made a mistake.

There was also a Bam-shaped hole left from where I moved him onto the beach for safekeeping. (Okay it’s just house-shaped.)

And here is the finished pond in its new location! A few squares to the left of the original to steer clear of the town entrance path. It didn’t quite have the charm of the original with its row of trees lining the river and wooden bridge, but it needed to be done. And eventually I wanted to replicate the river a level up anyway.

I made a bit of a barrier with stone seats and flowers that looked quite good together. Nice and subtle.

This time with New Horizons, I don’t know if it’s just because I’m older or what, but with this iteration of Animal Crossing I kept going OH&S with my building. Or I had different standards from before. When I built a cliff, I felt like I needed to adorn its edge with some kind of barrier. Otherwise the cliff felt naked and “unsafe” (unsafe from what??).

Or maybe I would have always been like this but past games never gave me the power to build cliffs. With great [terraforming] power comes great responsibility.

With the new cliffs gave I got a great vantage point to admire my first double rainbow!

I started to tentatively build a cliff behind the town hall (you can just see where the plaza is at the bottom of the picture).
This was also my first time noticing cloning flowers, but didn’t understand them, so this blue pansy bud had me really confused.

I had also planted some hybrid pansies I had taken from a mystery island around the town hall plaza, and they were popping off purple pansies like nobody’s business 😆

Since the town hall cliff was in front of my house, I tried to make it a bit more appealing by keeping a little opening connecting with the path. This is basically right behind the town hall bulletin board.

Then I had to tear that cliff down temporarily because Melba decided to be adorable and hang around in the flowers, and I couldn’t take a good photo of her 😂

An interesting glitch happened when I talked to her as I was putting the wall back up. I must have pressed A to speak to her the same moment she decided to hop off the bench, so instead she landed on the ground but still sitting. Then when we were done, she “hopped off” the ground.

This is a video of a classical example of having the wrong shovel equipped (this has happened to all of you by this point, right?), but it also gives a good overview of the area I was working on above.

Nearby, I replanted those money trees that used to be in front of Bam’s house since they needed a place to go with all the restructuring. As you can see I was still intent on continuing with this “experiment” that turned out to be a rumour. I was marking off how many thousands of Bells I buried, and then whether the bags I shook off were the big amount (the full amount buried or the regular 10k).

I also wasn’t happy with where the Nooklings’ shop was, and moved it off onto the beach. You can see in the picture above where it was between the town hall and the Ables’. I didn’t really have a plan when I placed it and put it there for convenience, but now it was starting to get in the way. It almost created a wall across the space with the Ables’, and was also directly in front of the museum.

Nook’s Cranny was also surprisingly well-suited to being on the beach! The wooden shack appearance and the log stakes really gave it that beach shack look.

Still didn’t stop this from happening, though.

Speaking of the Nooklings…

Thanks, you fuzzballs.

And here’s the view with the shop out of the way! Doesn’t it feel so much better?

Here’s a clip of the museum fountain striking 6pm.

And here’s a (very short) clip of me doing the camera whoosh from across the town centre. Get ready, it’s fast!

And if you’re not tired of videos yet, here’s a last one, of me having flower-planting difficulties. Flowers were going everywhere except in the hole I wanted. Don’t try planting diagonally, apparently.

Here’s a photo of me saying hello to the seaplane to show that little cliff feature from the other side. I love the amazing job that little lump of cliff does in hiding the sea from one side and the town centre from the other. And adds a nice bit of privacy to the town hall from any visitors coming in from the airport

That’s about as much town planning stuff as there is for this post, but here’s some more other stuff from during this period. Uh by which I mean, prepare for WADE.

I got to see inside Wade’s house. He definitely won the award for most eye-opening interior on the island🏅

I just found this little guy so stinking adorable. Look at his little butt!

Can you guess what he’s doing? He’s…a huh huh huh…he’s sitting!

When I visited his house again, he went up to his shell speaker and sang in the sweetest voice 🥺

So then next time I saw him outside I got him to sing to KK Metal 😆

Here’s a photo of Bam’s new location on the beach but you know it’s really a photo of Wade.

In other villager news here’s a picture of Rodeo in an old-school jacket I gave him. I thought he looked pretty good in it! I don’t have a good photo of it but there’s a cool giant golden disc on the back too.

Look at this guy! Look at him! On his phone. Oblivious. You can’t even talk to him until he’s put it away. I was mashing A.
Actually he probably took it out because I was talking him too much shortly before this… The animals are becoming too much like us!

I found Chief sitting peacefully on the riverbank.

Exactly, Chief!

This one was not my villager, but my partner’s. He has Puddles! 🥰 This was another example of unexpected nerdiness from Peppies!

This was also around the time I made the shocking discovery that…pitfall seeds were not extinct! Some kind soul let me visit their island to pick up a spare pitfall DIY (no idea how they got it…I’ve never yet seen a villager craft them). The great thing about it is that, even if you don’t have the DIY recipe, it’s still easy to learn! I taught my partner on his island the next day 😉

So that’s the update of my town landscaping and residents up to this point. I did want to share these last few pictures of some purely experimental terraforming I did though.

This one was at the my south-facing river mouth. I was going to have at least a single-level waterfall since I was going to have that extra tier across the island, but I wanted to see how a double-storey waterfall would look. It’s pretty funny being able to fish off it. The bobber kind of just floats and falls off the edge with the water.

Since I was inevitably going to have to put my house on an upper level too, I thought I’ve have some fun with it too.

This kind of terraforming design was making the rounds on the Internet around this time. Lots of people were showing off extravagant town entrances making the most of the waterscaping features. I thought I would try my hand at making some, and learn more about the way of the water shovel while I was at it.

It was quite loud!

It was fun doing it and I enjoyed the view up there.

Phew! Were my blog posts always so long? I’ve been working on this one for three days 😂 To end with, here’s a photo I really love that I took of Annalisa examining my pet a wild snapping turtle outside Nooklings’. See you next time!

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2 responses to “A welcoming start to terraforming…

  1. I always thought you made your island look so nice at the beginning, quaint and charming! 💚 I felt like mine was a flower breeding mess and I had trouble taking decorating seriously until I could enact my plans xP It’s interesting how you had trouble coming up with a plan! But I like how your towns always feel very true to you, whether it’s a love of red or putting turtles everywhere 😆

    Haha I’ve totally done that terraform-yourself-into-a-hole thing before as well! It’s really kinda annoying, you have to carve a path out and fill in the path as you go.

    Your villager interraction reactions reminds me a lot of your ACWW Happiness blog, or maybe it’s also helped by seeing familiar faces like Chief and Puddles from Bundeena 😄 Always enjoy a post from you, what a treat to keep up with your adventures in 3 games now 💕

    • My town was so empty and messy (at the same time lol) back then xD. I think decorating an entire island was too much to process so I just spat out items whenever wherever 😂 Aww it makes me happy to hear you say that my towns feel true to me ☺️

      Yeah, painful lesson to learn, lol. That said I almost did it again the other day!

      It does bring back a sense of nostalgia. And it makes me realise how long ago ACWW feels! Aww, it’s always lovely to get a comment from you too, like the good old days, and to likewise be able to keep up with your adventures across the generations, in whichever form it takes 🥰

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