I wrote this really quickly so there are a few things I probably need to change and if it doesn’t make sense…. Well, I totally meant that >.> yeeeaaahh.. Ok enjoy I guess lol (also I’m posting on my phone so I’ll be editing this post later)
Also it’d probably help if you’d actually played the games but I attempted to explain a little for people who haven’t played it before :3
Animal Crossing: Deserter
This story is about what happens when you leave your game for too long..
It’d been a while since I’d played my Animal Crossing game for the GameCube. Well… actually it had been several years, four years to be exact. I never really thought about it, I mean, I had my new Animal Crossing game for the 3DS, New Leaf. I didn’t have to play the GameCube one anymore but the more I thought about it, the more I kinda missed my old town. It was really cool, I had a nice set up, I remember I styled my clothes all cool, usually based off of whatever anime I was watching at the time. I figured it was probably Naruto themed since I’d been into it BIG time when I played my game.
I remember I had flowers planted all over town, made the animal characters have their own garden and I missed the lost and found where you got free stuff and man… it was awesome. I decided once I got home, I’d play it again, for old times sake. I sifted through the boxes within my old room, trying my hardest to find the game. I had moved recently and placed all my old stuff in my guest room, of course the move didn’t go well and I was back home. It was great though because I missed home and missed all my stuff. Finally after an hour or so, I’d found my GameCube and my Animal Crossing game. I was so hyped up I quickly hooked up the console and clicked in the disk. Though when I turned it on, I wasn’t greeted with the usual cube startup, you know, with catchy music… instead it just quickly went to the game.
I brushed it off and figured it was because I had pressed a button and didn’t notice or maybe the system was in bad condition. It didn’t matter, I would see if I could fix it later. I tried to start up the game when I noticed my saved file wasn’t there. Stupid me, I forgot to put in the memory card. I sighed and went back in my room to try and find the memory card for it. I knew it would be fairly easy to spot among any other of the memory cards I had since it was the exclusive Animal Crossing memory card. Finally I had found it and went right back to my game. I stuck the card into the GameCube and restarted it. Once again, the GameCube startup tune didn’t sound and I was greeted quickly with the Animal Crossing start screen.
I clicked my saved file and the usual backdrop of a spotlight within a random wood floor boarded room appeared yet, no animal there to greet me. It was frozen there for a while and I figured that the card was messed up, too much dust got into it or something. I was about to turn off the system when the game suddenly un-glitched and began running properly. The loading bar on the corner tuned in and then as soon as I knew it, my little character came out from his huge house and stared at the screen smiling at me. I smiled back, happy to see my old town again. I took the controller in hand and began my journey to greet all the old animals and see all the knick-knacks I had accumulated inside my house.
I noted that the ground was completely overgrown with weeds. I knew that would happen, I remembered leaving the game alone for a few weeks and coming back to see weeds sprouting up everywhere, but, not THIS bad. I mean, the pixelated ground wasn’t to be seen, at all. It was just weeds everywhere, they even glitched into each other. It was also dusk at this time which was a little odd to me considering it wasn’t even noon yet in real life. “The clock must be messed up.” I mused out loud. It was possible, it happened all the time and I was notorious for winding up or down the clock on the game to suit my needs. The trees were also set to what I figured must have been Autumn because the trees had no leaves, and bore no fruit.
Before I ventured around the town I went inside my house and expected to see a ridiculous amount of cockroaches living inside, instead there were no cockroaches. There was NOTHING! All my furniture that I remember purchasing were missing, the wallpaper and carpet were gone too, there was just nothing but a dusty grey backdrop. I tried to check my inventory for any indication as to where my stuff went, I could have done something with my stuff that I couldn’t remember doing but as I kept pressing the button to enter my inventory it wouldn’t respond. The button wasn’t stuck but the wire could have been broken so I shrugged it off. I left the house quickly and decided to investigate the town. There had to be some sort of reason they were gone. Maybe another glitch or maybe it was a event in the game, like some sort of hide-n-seek but with your stuff. I searched around the town, finding none of the cheerful and crazy townsfolk. There were only a few houses left standing, it looked like most of the animals had left town and left only a few of their belongings behind and a few of the stores were still opened from the looks of it, the lights inside still lit.
I roamed around some more, finding the seaside within my town to be completely still and lifeless, the usual waves and dark shadows of mystery fish gone. There was no wind that blew the dead leaves on the ground and the sound of absolutely nothing was present. It was the most eerie thing I had witnessed within the usual happy game… I checked the message board located next to the post office to see any notifications I had missed only to see several blank pages. I searched through them until I found the last message that was dated two years ago. It said in bold letters “WE CANNOT WAIT ANYMORE. WHY DID YOU GO?”
That text sent chills down my spine… I couldn’t comprehend why the little AI characters would write that down unless maybe it was meant for one of the animals that had moved away. It was possible, it had happened before for birthdays and giving goodbyes but it was so blunt and short, it was almost like you could feel the anger behind those words. I removed my character from the board and tried to enter inside the post office, it took a few moments as my character froze and then finally entered inside. Within was just as abandoned as the rest of the town but as I approached the counter, I had a message flash before my eyes that went away just as fast as it came, I didn’t have any time to read it when suddenly the options to save my mail and pay my debt to Nook popped up. The character meant to be behind the counter must have actually been there but couldn’t be seen because of the glitchy game. Nonetheless, I found a small slimmer of hope in that since something, as bugged as it was; still worked.
From what I could tell, I had nothing on my character and I wanted to get some bells quickly in order to maybe use the bells somehow to get the animals back. Maybe if I play the game normally it would stop glitching so much. At this time I was getting really upset. All the time I had spent getting everything perfect in the game all ruined just because the game was old and dusty. I tried to open the inventory again but it wouldn’t let me. My game was SO broken. “Whatever..” I sighed and decided to just go with it, see what else was glitched out. I walked around the town a bit more, going into some of the abandoned houses and finding nothing within them except clothes on the floor. I tried to pluck up some of the weeds until I found a shovel that had been placed next to a mark on the ground. That moment I was fairly happy to see something normal within the game again, something not glitched out. I picked up the shovel and dug up whatever was under the ground.
It was something I always enjoyed, finding new fossils to either give to the museum or sell. I found my excitement for the game perk back up and tried to find more fossils. Eventually after a lot of weed pulling and digging I had found a total of ten fossils. I had never found so many in one day before, it was actually quite amazing. If this was a glitch, it was the best one so far. I quickly made my way towards the museum and entered inside. The Owl; Blathers, was standing there as usual except something was a little off. He wasn’t moving at all, no cute little swaying like they were dancing to the music, which now that I thought about it, there was no music playing at all, everywhere I had gone to, it had been deathly quiet.. and he was just there, standing as still as could be. If it wasn’t for the fact that he was staring right at my character, I would have thought he was frozen entirely. It was unnerving the way his head just glided around to stare right at my character, like what real owls do but not quite as natural. His black iris’ were bigger than usual, almost taking up the whites of his eyes. I approached him and began to talk with him.
"hooo… WHO?!" Blathers yelled, the text for him appeared brightly on the screen and the usual cute voice that emanated from him sounded so distant and guttural. "Oh dear! Upon closer examination, I have grave news to share with you r̢̹̼̘̗͈̘̬e̬̙̰̱ʇɹe̬̙̰̱se̬̙̰̱d̯̫͙̝̬͙͡…" the text flashed again. My name I had put into the game had been jumbled up somehow it was almost unreadable.
I quickly pressed the B button before I could read the whole thing through, stupid me to ignore that but it was just too weird. I showed him the fossils and the animation of him twitched slightly to indicate he had taken the items. “Hoo hoo! I do believe I’ve found something that’s not yet part of our museum’s collection…” He said and twitched again, presumably handing back the fossils. I tried to donate the fossils but the text kept popping up; “Sadly I cannot assess that which needs no assessing.”
Again, it was probably because the game was bugging out. I left him alone and went on my way towards Nook ‘N’ Go so I could try and sell the fossils so I could pay off my debt to Nook again, probably. What I should have been greeted with was not what I was expecting, yet again.. the store that had been a great pretty store had been reduced to Nook’s Cranny again. The old beat up shack had the lights on and I entered inside to find the store empty as well. Tom Nook was nowhere to be found, nothing was inside it until I heard the pitter-patter of the raccoon’s feet enter inside the store.
"…Well, actually, I was just thinking about the good old days, hm?
I know it seems that the world is my oyster, what with my fine shop…
But in my childhood, I lived the kind of life you couldn’t even imagine!
Yes, yes, but this was all some time ago, but this was all some time ago, before I moved to this town, hm?
Of course, I was born in our lovely town, but I moved away for a time…
Yes, yes, the city years, I like to call them. I was a raccoon of action, hm?
The big city certainly had its charms…but it had its pitfalls, as well.
Indeed, I had to endure certain hardships that I’ve never spoken of, hm?
…Hard to believe, yes?
You’re probably asking yourself, what the heck is Nook talking about, hm?
For now, r̢̹̼̘̗͈̘̬e̬̙̰̱ʇɹe̬̙̰̱se̬̙̰̱d̯̫͙̝̬͙͡, maybe it’s best that we forget we ever talked about this.” Nook said, his voice seemed to echo slightly.
Nook walked up closer and turned to face me. ME… not my character. What the heck WAS Nook talking about? I mean, I know he’d say weird stories sometimes but this was much stranger, almost darker, and my name was jumbled up again. Now I was freaking out, what the fuck happened while I was gone? This was more than just some glitch, it was almost as if they were talking to me, like that message on the board and now Nook, they acted like I…
I tried to check my inventory again, it wouldn’t show up but damn it I tried. “Maybe if I just keep playing it would all get better” I repeated to myself hopeful that this was just some sort of joke or something that would make since eventually..
Finally my inventory came up and I could see the fossils I had collected. I hovered the pointer over them to see what they were and felt my breath escape me when I saw the names. Sable and Mabel Able, Margie, Whitney, Fang, Becky, Bob, Boomer, Petunia and Alfonso. All the names of the villagers within my town including the two seamstresses. I jumped off of my couch and quickly turned off the GameCube. The screen went black and I stared into the TV terrified. For a second I thought I saw something, staring right back at me. My character.. The eyes black and hollow with the mouth gapped open in a silent scream.. It was impossible. I choose to restart the game, delete over it and see what would happen. The little white dog with a guitar greeted me at the start screen as it should have been and I went so far as to play through the little tutorial of the game with Tom Nook to see if ANYTHING was different.. no glitches, nothing.
The next day, I threw the game away and the memory card. I didn’t have the courage to try and start it over again and become another disappointment and nightmare.
I wouldn’t play the game again anyway with having the new game, there really was no reason to have two towns to take care of..
Not after that.
Not after what I had done to the last townsfolk…
Deserter. I figured out that’s what they called me.
I deserted them and left them to rot, without my knowing. They hated me and wondered why I left, why I let whatever happen to them happen.
But even though I had deserted them I vowed to myself to take extra care with my new town on New Leaf so they would never experience the same horror the previous town had gone through. I’ll never leave them.