Nintendo have been slowly dipping their toes into the waters of mobile gaming over the past year, with Miitomo, Super Mario Run, and their partnership with Niantic. Their latest game for mobile devices is Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, a spinoff of the Animal Crossing series where players run a small village of animals. In this spinoff, you play the owner of a campsite, where you must help out your campers, forge relationships with them, and slowly improve it to suit the needs of your favourite guests.
It's a free-to-play game, and much of it is locked behind either you waiting a lengthy amount of time or paying real money. To get the most out of it, no matter how much you spend, we've put together a guide on all of Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp's features, from where to spend your Bells and Leaf Tickets to what sort of schedule the game runs on.
Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp events
The first Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp even has now begun! The Christmas event has started around the world, with new furniture and a special Santa hat available to players. There's no end to this event, but given the Christmas theme, we expect it to last throughout Winter.
Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp's currencies
There are two primary currencies in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, Bells and Leaf Tickets. Both can be earned in the game, while you can also buy Leaf Tickets with real money purchases. Bells are typically earned by fulfilling requests from campers: gather pears, catch a specific fish, and so on. Bells are used to purchase and craft furniture, upgrade your camper van, and buy new outfits, while Leaf Tickets can buy special furniture and items, as well as upgrade things like your inventory space.
How to earn Bells
The simplest way to earn Bells is buy fulfilling requests from campers. It's the most regular and fruitful method, not taking up too much time but still giving you a nice cash reward. You can also collect fruit or catch bugs to sell them, but they're not a solid source of income: campers are much more generous.
While there's no way to directly purchase Bells with real money or Leaf Tickets, you can use Leaf Tickets in such a way that you'll earn a fair chunk of Bells. Going to Shovelstrike Quarry, for example, costs Leaf Tickets but ultimately nets you some Bells and resources. You can go to Shovelstrike Quarry for free if you've gathered a group of 5 friends, though.
You can also shake trees to sometimes get free Bells. It's not the most lucrative solution, but it's a way to get some extra Bells in a pinch!
How to spend your Bells
This is the currency you don't need to worry about too much. While they're limited, they're relatively easy to come by. Efficient Bell spending is a form of micromanagement that doesn't reap many rewards: if you want something, you might as well buy it if you've got the funds.
There's no 'right' way to play Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, and this is reflected in how you spend your bells. Improving your camp is the best way to attract new campers, as you'll be able to select certain kinds of furniture that fit a certain aesthetic, but it's by no means the 'right' thing to do. You can be a fashionista, buying clothes, or a bit more selfish, just improving your own van.
- 01 Dec 2017,2:23pm
The only major decision is whether you deem your camper van as important. To upgrade it, you've got to pay off loans in sequence, with the final one costing 150,000 Bells (but there's no interest, meaning you can put off paying these loans indefinitely). By upgrading it, you'll get more space inside to fit furniture, and so it's only really relevant if you need that space. Otherwise, spending Bells on furniture and amenities for your camp is a better choice.
How to earn Leaf Tickets
Unfortunately, there's not many ways to do this bar spending cash. There are some launch bundles to sweeten the deal of buying Leaf Tickets now, but otherwise you'll be getting those Leaf Tickets through levelling up or completing the Stretch Goals the game encourages you to complete.
How to spend your Leaf Tickets
This is a more important question, as Leaf Tickets are harder to earn without paying real money. There are four primary functions of Leaf Tickets: buying special time-limited furniture, buying items to give many resources, speeding up crafting and construction, and improving characters. The latter is generally the best choice for your Leaf Tickets.
The most important of these is crafting slots: by default, Cyrus, the alpaca who crafts everything you order, can only craft one item at a time. By spending 80 Leaf Tickets early on, you can get a second crafting slot for furniture, meaning you're no longer limited to creating one bit of furniture at a time. It sounds simple, but can prevent you from getting locked behind timers for a significant portion of your day.
Similarly, you can upgrade your inventory space too: if you're planning to horde bugs, fruit, and fish to ensure you're got a selection ready to give out to campers, it might be a good idea to upgrade it. This isn't as much of an issue as having extra crafting slots, as managing what you do and don't need to carry around will help you out, but it's still an important thing to consider.
Otherwise, your limited Leaf Tickets, after this, are probably best spent on the exclusive, time-limited items. Speeding up crafting or buying items to gather resources are purely ways to save time, whereas there's absolutely no other way (as far as we can tell) to get those exclusive items.
Are the any free Leaf Tickets?
There's no such thing as a free ride, except in the very rare case of Nintendo rewarding you for using My Nintendo. With My Nintendo, which comes under the "More" tab at the bottom of the game, you can spend points to unlock items in the game. Those points, called Platinum Points, can be spent online or through the app itself for in-game rewards. Currently, that store isn't too fleshed out, and there's few ways to earn regular points, but there is currently a one-time offer there for 50 free Leaf Tickets. You might as well pick them up!
How to level up
It might not be the answer you were hoping for, but the way to level up is to continue playing the game. There's no real secret to it, you've just got to keep completing requests and talking to campers. You'll do it slightly faster if you're talking to all campers rather than just helping out one, as friendship levels increase quickly from 1-3, and much more slowly from then on.
Even if you can't complete quests, just talking to campers and pressing the red text for a conversation adds to friendship levels, and helps out with levelling up.
Using your time efficiently
In Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, everything is on a timer. Campers, resources, and pretty much everything in the real game runs off the clock, with certain things changing at different times of day. The most important thing here is that quests and resources update every three hours. That means that at 00:00 am, 3:00 am, 6:00 am, 9:00 am, 12:00 pm, 3:00 pm, 6:00 pm, and 9:00 pm you should expect campers to change.
To use your time effectively, don't spend a huge amount of time in just one of these times, as you won't be seeing a variety of quests change. Similarly, if you time the periods where you collect fruit up to these time shifts, fruit will respawn at the same time as when quests change, making it easier for you to keep track. The marketplace items then refresh every 6 hours: for optimum efficiency, make sure you play twice a day, as the marketplace's items refresh every 6 hours, at midnight, 6:00 am, midday, and 6:00 pm.
If you're only able to play once a day, try to make it on the point where things swap over, so you'll be seeing things change and be given new opportunities to collect Bells and resources.
This also gives you a better chance to complete any daily quests, which typically have very good rewards. Completing those alongside individual quests given to you by campers should be a focus.
Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp Where to Buy
Giving your camp a style
To appeal to one sort of camper, you'll want to make sure your camp is styled towards their theme. The possible themes are Cool, Cute, Sporty, and Natural, with furniture and amenities all associated with one. For example, bright sofas and anything with a love heart is Cute, but wood furniture is Natural.
If you've got a favourite camper, it's best to work out their favourite style and keep to it if you want to stick around. Generally, it's best to keep to one theme anyway, to ensure you're making the most of it, as otherwise you'll be limited. Amenities are especially effective in this regard: having a few pieces of furniture with a mismatched theme is fine, but you definitely want your amenities to have the right sort of theme.