Animal crossing: new leaf

Animal Crossing: New Leaf – A Beginner’s Tutorial

There’s no better feeling than paying off your house loan, catching that rare fish, and kicking off a successful fashion line… even if it is only in a game. This game, Animal Crossing: New Leaf, is massive and brilliant filled with tons of things to do and start. However, if you don’t know where to start and even how to start, it can be rather boring. Why is your High Street so empty? How do you make money fast? How do you get those presents floating along in the sky or finally get a wetsuit?


Geek Insider is here to help with all your Animal Crossing: New Leaf needs!


Walk – Don’t Run!

Holding B allows your cute little character to run around town but you don’t want to rely on this too much.  Although it might seem annoying to toddle along, running has quite a few drawbacks. The main two are that you’ll scare away fish and bugs that you could be catching. The other is that, the more you run, the more the grass in your town wears away. This makes your town look ugly and you can only grow your grass back by planting trees or flowers in the ruined areas, which takes a long, long time.

Stick To A Routine

Make sure not to miss the things that renew with each new day. These are the five cracks in the ground that appear randomly, make sure to water all the flowers, and shake those trees for the 2 pieces of random furniture, 5 beehives, and Bells.

Animal crossing: new leaf

Fun fact: Bee hives are worth 500 Bells while bees are worth 1,500 Bells.

The rocks around the town will also have some daily surprises. By hitting them with your shovel, you’ll eventually find one that breaks and reveals a gem and one that will spit out up to 16,100 Bells. The money rock is a little tricky because from the first time you hit it, you’ll only have a limited time to strike it as many times as you can. The gems can be sold to Re-Tail for a couple thousands Bells or given to Cyrus (he wakes up around the 7 day mark) to make customizable furniture.

Animal crossing: new leaf

Take Anything New To The Museum

As tempting as it may be to sell any and all the new bugs, fossils, and fish to get those sweet, sweet Bells, it will make it so much harder to remember what you need to donate and what you already have. However, if you donate every new item you get, you won’t have to double check each time at the museum.

You can tell it’s a brand new species because your character will wonder out loud what their encyclopaedia says about it.

Customize Your Shop Hours

Once you have your mayoral powers, you can build Public Works Projects and put Ordinances into place. Ordinances might become super useful for you because two certain ones will let you change the opening and closing hours of the shops to fit into your schedule.

Animal crossing: new leaf

You can only have one at a time so choose wisely. Two to look out for are the Early Bird and Night Owl ones. Early Bird will get all the shops to open three hours earlier, Night Owl will make them close three hours later.

Don’t Worry About High Street

Your High Street will probably look pretty lame when you start playing but it will grow. It all depends on you completing certain criteria. Eventually you will get a T&T Mart, Club LOL, a Garden Shop, and more. This game is set up so as long as you keep playing, you will eventually get all these shops.

What’s The Point Of the ABD Machine?

The Post Office has an Automatic Bell Dispenser where you can store your Bells and pay off your loans. But is it worth it to even use the Deposit option? Well, if you hit certain milestones in your Savings account, you can get rare and unique gifts. Here’s a list:


  • 100,000 Bells – Tissue Box
  • 500,000 Bells – Letter Set
  • 1 million Bells – Piggy Bank
  • 5 million Bells – Aluminum Case
  • 10 million Bells – Post Office Poster
  • 20 million Bells – Safe
  • 50 million Bells – Deliveryman Cap
  • 100 million Bells – ATM


Redd Is A Jerk

Animal crossing: new leaf

This sneaky fox sets up a tent in your town square one day every week and tries to sell four pieces of ‘rare’ artwork.You can only buy one each time he visits and three will be fake. Obviously, you want the real one so you can give it to the museum but it means brushing up on your art knowledge. The fake ones will have slight difference from their real life versions. Google will be quite helpful in this respect.

Don’t Worry About Turnips

So you met Joan the Boar, who sells turnips every Sunday between 6am and noon. The turnips usually sell from 90 – 110 Bells each and you can buy however many you want. You need to sell them before the next Sunday, trying to make a profit as each day the price of turnips will change twice at re-Tail.

Animal crossing: new leaf

The “stalk” market isn’t all that vital in this game, you’d need to drop a lot of Bells in order to ever make a decent profit and it’s just not worth the time.

The Island

Here’s the real money maker in the game. You get access to the island once you pay off your first mortgage of 39,800 Bells. You’ll need to pay 1,000 Bells to the Kapp’n so he’ll take you to the island, serenading you sweetly all the way.

On the island, you’ll get to take part in tours, which are mini-games that give you medals as prizes. You can use these to buy special items only available in the island shop.

During these mini-games, you’ll be able to talk to the Gyroid to borrow tools from him. Then you can go fishing and bug hunting for those rare island species that will really reel in the Bells. Just remember to put anything you want to keep into the drop box by the desk in the island hut and collect them from the basket on the dock in your town.

Animal crossing: new leaf

Fishing Tips

Here are some key tips to remember:

  • Some rarer fish will only bite for an instant. It is much easier to catch based on the sound cue vs. the visual cue.
  • Fish will tap the line up to four times. If it’s tapped four times, you know it will bite on the fifth for sure.
  • Look at the fish’s shadow and make sure to always try and catch ones with fins. The least valuable finned fish is the Ocean Sunfish, worth 4000 Bells, while the most valuable is the Shark and is worth 15,000 Bells.

Animal crossing: new leaf

Bug Catching Tips

  • Creep by holding A while your net is out.
  • To go even slower for rarer, trickier bugs; hold A but only slowly nudge your Circle Pad forward. This will allow you to sneak even slower.

Animal crossing: new leaf

Avoid Creeps

Animal Crossing wants you to share your space with your friends by leaving your gates open. That also leaves you open to have people with less than honorable intentions: ruining your town by trampling your flowers and chopping down trees.

You can easily prevent this by inviting over a friend you trust and marking them as your Best Friend by tapping the heart icon next to their name. Then open your gates to Best Friends only, which means that nasty strangers can’t get in.

QR Codes

Animal crossing: new leaf

You can unlock the QR Code feature by constantly talking to Sable, the moody Able sister at the sewing machine. Eventually she will start to get chatty and will soon let you use her sewing machine. This sewing machine will allow you to read and create your own custom QR design.

The Happy Home Academy

Animal crossing: new leaf

So, every morning, without you noticing, the Happy Home Academy checks out your house and grades it based on how good it looks. Creepy. You get points on amount of furniture, type, and placement as well as extra points for seasonal items and themed furniture.  There are two reasons to trying for a high HHA score: bragging rights and the rare gifts you’ll get for meeting milestones.


StreetPass is really important for New Leaf. This feature allow you to possibly buy items you would never have access to otherwise. Anytime you pass someone with Animal Crossing: New Leaf, their house will appear in the Happy Home Showcase at the top of your High Street. You’ll be able to enter and check out all their furniture and, more importantly, buy anything that wasn’t a custom made item. A downside is that these items will be more expensive than usual and you can only order up to five items a day.


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