Here’s a post from Tara, our pal and co-worker and the Community Manager for many games here at PopCap. She likes to stop by the Blog Ride now and again to post it up (most recently when she wrote about her Top 5 Video Game Characters) and we like it too.
Working at a game studio, you can probably imagine that we all love playing video games. And since June 9 there has been quite a shift in our gaming conversations here at PopCap. Rather than talking about our high scores on the leaderboards or our favorite latest application from the App Store, we’re talking about our newest obsession: Animal Crossing New Leaf. In case you don’t know, Animal Crossing is a franchise from our friends over at Nintendo, who have just released the 4th title in this series. The journey begins when you arrive in your new town where you are now the mayor. Each day brings an opportunity to make your house bigger, build new shops or landmarks, scavenge your town for items to sell, create new designs to wear or display and so much more.
Meeting with a big group to play Animal Crossing at lunchtime is so fun and rewarding. Not only have I met people from the office that I’ve never met before (we are all spread out across multiple floors), but I ended up with almost 20 new Nintendo 3DS friends! Jason from the Bejeweled team brought everyone a FAQ sheet explaining some Animal Crossing basics, Veronica our Solitaire Blitz producer gathered a long list of all the PopCappers playing and created the FB Group, and it became official… our Animal Crossing club was formed! Because we can chat in our FB Group every day, we have become quite a tightknit Animal Crossing/PopCap family. We have used this space to share our daily Turnip prices for the Stalk Market (Janie in Customer Support was the most popular co-worker in the building yesterday with a selling price of 601 Bells!), share any instructions from Nintendo (how to share pictures, what new items are available for the month, etc.), and of course we have to keep each other in the know on extremely important Internet finds like this: http://youtu.be/h_kEXtDlQFc.
It’s easier discussing these things in our Facebook Group because when I turn around to ask someone about their town, I can see the people around us who don’t play wondering if we are talking about real life or our virtual life. This game has become such a part of my real life these days that sometimes I’m not sure either. When I’m watering my real garden, I think about switching out my watering can for a net when a butterfly flies by! Even though my worlds seem to be colliding, having this new connection with my co-workers (yes, even Jeff Green is playing!) has been such a fun addition to our days. And it just reminds me how games really help develop communities (among other things).
If you haven’t hopped on the Animal Crossing train yet, Taradice is just a hop, skip and jump away. Come on by for a visit and grab some Persimmons, Coconuts, or the local fave, Apples. Everyone is welcome!