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Stuck in Animal Crossing: New Horizons? Ask a friend for help

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Other islands can help you build up your own

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

It’s impossible to play Animal Crossing: New Horizons wrong, but occasionally, you can miss crucial steps that will open up your island’s capabilities. If you’re finding yourself stuck — whether it’s a missing recipe or a location you can’t seem to reach — there’s an easier solution than tearing through your new home: invite some pals over or take a trip to one of their islands.

Like past games, New Horizons encourages players to spend some time with friends. It’s an easy way to hang with friends you can’t see in person right now and snag some new fruits, clothes, and other items for your island. People you spend time with online can also gift you items or make you tools, a handy trick that can help you speed past the game’s natural gates to get what you want or where you want to be sooner. A pole vault, for example, will allow you to get across rivers and into new territories, while a ladder will let you scale cliffs. Craftable items from friends can help you complete island projects or spruce up your home. Friends with excess resources can also save you the wait of a full day or the trip to a random island via precious Nook Miles.

The good news is that even if you find yourself at an impasse, the answer will likely be found by chatting up your residents or members of the Nook family. Early on, I struggled to find the recipe for materials to build a bridge. Days after I’d gotten a friend to craft log stakes for me, I realized I’d skipped an important ask from Tom Nook: bringing him different island creatures. Not only did this get me my missing recipe, but it also unlocked Blathers, the punny owl who runs the island’s museum.

New Horizons has a lot to offer, and discovering new characters, events, or fun items takes patience. Friends can ease those woes a little — as long as everyone is polite on the trip.