Animal Crossing: New Horizons released near the start of the global coronavirus pandemic, and the online mode has allowed players to stay connected and interact despite quarantining in their homes. It has also led to several businesses and organizations using the game in creative ways to promote services, but Nintendo appears to be limiting what is actually allowed.
“While our services and products are generally for personal use only, we understand there may be situations in which businesses and organizations would like to use or reference the game in relation to their business,” Nintendo said. “As such, we would like to share a few guidelines with those businesses, organizations, and anyone representing them, to preserve the experience for the millions of people enjoying the game recreationally.”
Approved activities include inviting others to your island, providing custom designs or Dream Addresses you have made, or uploading your screenshots and footage to “family-friendly” websites and social networks. However, there are several activities Nintendo does not allow:
- Bringing politics into the game
- Sharing false information
- Using the game as a marketing platform that directs people to campaigns or activities outside of the game
- Selling custom designs or earning advertising revenue from the game
The mention of politics and direction players to a campaign outside the game seems to forbid things like Joe Biden’s Animal Crossing island. It had a website address listed for voting, meaning the Biden campaign team likely wouldn’t be able to do the same thing in 2024 should New Horizons still be popular.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons was recently nominated in several categories for The Game Awards 2020, including Game of the Year. The ceremony will take place on December 10.