Nintendo's Animal Crossing: New Horizons Holiday Update Is The COVID Distraction We Need

Animal Crossing: New Horizons Winter Update
The folks at Nintendo are getting ready to serve up a free 'Winter Update' for its highly popular Animal Crossing: New Horizons game, and it can not get here quick enough. Fortunately, it is right around the corner. As in, Nintendo plans to push the update out on Thursday, November 19, which is now just a couple of days away.

This could have just as easily been called a Holiday Update, because of two very distinct themes that will play out, those being Thanksgiving and Christmas. And it arrives just in time—the latest CDC guidelines point out that "small household gatherings are an important contributor to the rise in COVID-19 cases," and many families are opting to skip getting together for the holidays.

Nintendo is not in a position to make COVID-19 take a hike, but it can provide a virtual distraction through in-game gatherings.

"We’d like to invite everyone to experience the holidays together with family and friends in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, along with your island residents bringing their unique seasonal cheer," said Nick Chavez, Nintendo of America’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. "We’re eager for everyone to discover all the changes arriving to your islands during this holiday season."

The update celebrates Turkey Day on November 26, and will entail a gathering in the plaza. You can help Franklin, a first-class chef, collect ingredients to go in dishes that will be on display in the plaza, and receive a thank-you gift from him in return.

This will be followed by a month-long Toy Day event spanning December 1-25. During that time, you will be able to purchase toys from Nook's Cranny and find holiday-themed clothing at the Able Sisters shop. Then on December 24, Jingle will appear, and you can help him deliver toys, if you so choose, and also receive a thank-you gift for doing so.

In addition to the major holiday events, the update will bring about nine new reactions and half a dozen new hairstyles. There will also be some new features. Namely, a whole island transfer feature will let you move your saved user data (including the island and all its residents) to another system. This will be facilitated by a free Island Transfer Tool app in the Nintendo eShop.

There will also be a single-player transfer feature that lets you move resident data to another system, including your name, appearance, and equipment, as well as your inventory, home, an storage.

Finally, Nintendo will be expanding the maximum storage from 1,600 to 2,400 slots. Good stuff.