Look, we get it. You’re probably sick of people posting about Animal Crossing: New Horizons on the internet. What’s the big deal with it, anyway? It’s just a bunch of cutesy characters, running around an island doing menial tasks to pay off an ever increasing debt to a money-hungry raccoon.
And yet for some reason you want it – crave it, even. You want to chat with anthropomorphic villagers; you want to toil the land and enjoy the fruits of your labor. But the mere prospect of buying a Nintendo Switch solely to experience one game just isn’t right.
Well, what if we told you there are some great PC games that can give you those Animal Crossing feels… and they’re all on Steam. Who cares if they aren’t the real deal – these Animal Crossing PC alternatives will make you feel a little less envious of your friend’s island life, at the very least.
1. Graveyard Keeper
No, this isn’t a joke recommendation. Graveyard Keeper is kind of similar to Animal Crossing, albeit the subject matter is a lot less cheery. Grab a shovel (and some bodies) as you manage your own graveyard and do whatever it takes to make a thriving business.
Despite being a game largely about putting people six-feet under, Graveyard Keeper is full of dark humor and will make you appreciate your real world job quite a bit more. Sure, you might have back-to-back meetings and the printer is jammed yet again, but at least you don’t have to grind up organs to sell to the local butcher for a quick buck.
2. Stardew Valley
A genuinely amazing game in its own right, Stardew Valley combines the best of Harvest Moon and Animal Crossing to create a compelling and utterly addictive experience. With farming at its heart, enjoy the simple life as you live off the land, grow crops, tend to livestock and craft more efficient equipment.
Head into the bustling town and forge relationships with its citizens – you never know, it may even lead to marriage and kids! There’s so much to do in Stardew Valley that you’ll wonder why you don’t possess these productivity levels outside of the game.
Oh, and with the recent multiplayer update you can now fish, fight, plant and sow your seeds with your closest farmhouse friends online. It just gets better and better.
3. Garden Paws
Instantly adorable, Garden Paws is the equivalent of Sylvanian Family: the video game (which sadly doesn’t exist). You play as a pint-sized animal tasked with building up a prospering community. Run a shop to earn coins, battle through dangerous dungeons, and take on exciting quests as you work your little paws to the bone.
With over 500+ hours of content to enjoy, Garden Paws continues to grow with regular updates and new gameplay modes to try, like online multiplayer where you can play with up to 32 furry friends. Aww.
4. My Time at Portia
A new life awaits in the enchanting town of Portia, but before you get too comfy, you’ll have to restore your father’s dilapidated workshop to its former glory. Befriend the townsfolk, farm like harvest is just around the corner, and become a house designer as you collect and craft all sorts of furniture.
To aid you on your adventure, you can level up your character with numerous skills to boost a variety of skills to fit your playstyle. Become more social, or put all your efforts into combat – the choice is yours.
There’s so many tasks to tackle in My Time at Portia, that you’ll only wish you had an infinite amount of time to get everything done.
5. Little Dragons Cafe
Have you ever wanted to work at a cafe and raise a dragon? Of course you have! Little Dragons Cafe will help you realize that strangely specific life-long dream as you train your very own scaly companion from a weak-winged baby into a fire-breathing adult.
You’ll also get to run a quaint olde cafe, preparing delicious dishes, serving customers and managing a team of staff and visitors who think keeping a dragon as a pet is totally normal.
To keep your cafe stocked with supplies, you’ll need to venture out into an expansive world filled with secrets, wildlife, and dangers to overcome as you collect ingredients to cook new recipes at your cafe. What a lovely existence.
Hokko Life mirrors the Animal Crossing formula so closely, that you might be forgiven for thinking it’s nothing more than a cheap imitation. But that damning judgment would be rather unfair, considering the game has yet to be released and does bring a few fresh ideas to the table.
For example, Hokko Life lets you craft your own furniture using materials you find in the world. The level of customization goes far beyond what’s possible in Animal Crossing, too – swirl your own paints, upholster a deck chair, or create catwalk-worthy outfits – you can personalize the game however you like.
With a release date set for 2020, we’ll have to wait and see whether Hokko Life can go toe-to-toe with Nintendo’s charming simulation series.
- Give your derriere the throne it deserves – the best PC gaming chairs