No Politics For Nintendo’s Animal Crossing

By Ben Hamill - December 23 2020
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No Politics For Nintendo’s Animal Crossing

Since the game was first launched in March 2020, Nintendo’s Animal Crossing: New Horizons has become a favourite platform among many with a brand or an idea to sell to players. Much of what has been happening is however about to become stalemate following a new set of rules and terms of use published by the games-maker. 
The gist of it is that companies will not be permitted to market in such a way that players are directed to platforms outside of Animal Crossing, content is to remain family-friendly and free of age restrictions, and users aren’t allowed to benefit financially from using the game. These are of course all in line with Nintendo’s usual terms of use. An interesting addition has however been that of the company expressly prohibiting companies from bringing into the game content of a political nature.  

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Welcome To Biden HQ

Those who have been playing the game in the lead-up to the November 3 U.S. Presidential Election may have noticed the appearance of virtual headquarters belonging to the Joe Biden campaign. 
Biden HQ, described by Director of Digital Partnerships for the Biden-Harris campaign, Christian Tom, as an Animal Crossing: New Horizons island where supporters can rally together to connect with the campaign also on gaming platform, was easy to spot thanks to the town hall flag donning the Team Joe logo. There were more giveaways: campaign flyers scattered across expertly paved streets, a Biden-themed amusement park, and even in-game merchandise exclusive to the Animal Crossing platform only. 
What will have crawled under the games maker’s skin would have been not so much the ice cream, trains, aviators, or even the pomp and swag with which it had all been presented – but the several features calling voters to mobilize and vote for the Biden-Harris campaign. 

Leave The Politics Out Of It

Nintendo has in response to content recently identified as inappropriate and/or disallowed published a number of “reminders” regarding the terms of use as far as businesses and organisations interested in using the game for brand engagement are concerned. 
Notable rules and restrictions include:
•   Users are to refrain from content considered age-inappropriate, vulgar, discriminatory, or in any way offensive.
•    No false information may be shared about any person or business.
•    The game may not be used as a marketing tool directing people away from the game and onto external sales pages. 
•    No financial benefit may be enjoyed from using the game.
•    Most notably: individuals and brands are to refrain from involving politics and/or bringing it into the game. 

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