Disney’s Answer to Nintendo Animal Crossing: Dreamlight Valley

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Credit: Disney Dreamlight Valley

Disney Dreamlight Valley was launched, or rather opened in Early Access, in August 2022. This game is still being developed, and it will eventually be free to play. It’s a life simulation and adventure game that’s very similar to Nintendo’s Animal Crossing. So, I thought I’d look at the differences and similarities between the two games.

Starting out with the similarities:

Nintendo Animal Crossing

  • Complete daily tasks for Nook Mile Rewards
  • Run an island filled with villagers
  • Build relationships with villagers for rewards (reactions, gifts, etc.)
  • Collect resources
    • Fruits are endless on trees
    • Vegetables have to be planted, watered, then replanted after harvesting
    • Pick up weeds
    • Mine rocks for stone
    • Cut down trees for wood
  • You can cook and craft using resources found
  • Timmy and Tommy sell items in the shop that change every day
  • Ability to take photos in multiple modes with filters

Disney Dreamlight Valley

  • Complete daily tasks for Dreamlight
  • Run a valley filled with Disney characters
  • Build relationships with characters for rewards (furniture, clothes, etc.)
  • Collect resources
    • Fruits are endless on bushes and trees
    • Vegetables have to be planted, watered, then replanted after harvesting
    • Pick up sticks, mushrooms, and spices
    • Mine rocks for stones and gems
    • Dig for pebbles, clay, soil, and sand
    • Clear night thorns (aka weeds)
  • You can cook and craft using resources found
  • Scrooge sells items in the shop that change every day
  • Ability to take photos in multiple modes with filters

Alright, now for the differences between the two games:

Nintendo Animal Crossing

  • Only one island you get to control
  • A maximum of 10 villagers, but you have a choice of who you get based on who you find while villager hunting
  • House is expandable but you only have a set amount of rooms and those sizes are predetermined
  • You invite friends over to your island
  • Only available on Nintendo Switch
  • Fishing and bug collecting. Depends on the season and time of day for what’s available.
  • Pattern customization that can be shared with others online
  • There are rotating characters that come to the island who can do unique things or have unique items for purchase
  • With DLC you can change your villager’s houses (interior/exterior)
  • You have to pay to move shops, buildings, and homes
  • You have to be holding the items you want to craft with
  • There is no energy system
  • Villagers are just there and can be interacted with, but they provide no bonus while you are doing things on the island

Disney Dreamlight Valley

  • Multiple biomes
  • More than 10 characters but they are the same ones everyone gets
  • Based on things you’ve unlocked you have different quests to complete
  • House is expandable and you can have up to seven floors, each with a possibility of 4 rooms that you determine the size of
  • No option currently to have others visit your valley
  • Available on multiple platforms and you can play your same valley on each of them with the use of Cloud Saves
  • Fishing is an option, but the selection is based on biome and rarity
  • Pattern customization but they cannot be shared
  • You can have a companion that follows you around. You get these when you have high enough friendships with critters in the various biomes
  • You cannot change a character’s home (interior/exterior), they are what they are
  • You can move things around as much as you want without it costing anything
  • You only need to have the items in a chest or your inventory in order to craft with them
  • There is an energy system but you can refill it by visiting your house or eating
  • Characters can give bonuses when gathering resources if you are hanging out with them (and they are for that specific task)

So, there you have it. The games are extremely similar. Some things I think are done way better in Dreamlight Valley (like crafting, designing the main valley, quests, companions that follow you around, etc.). But there are other things I appreciate about Animal Crossing (the ability to play with friends, better house inventory, no energy system, ability to share patterns online, etc.).

I still enjoy playing both.

Though right now I’ve spent more time on Dreamlight Valley purely as it’s new and I have things to do. Whereas in Animal Crossing, I love how my island is so there’s nothing really for me to do. The island is fully decorated, I have all the rewards from my villagers, and more or less my museum is complete. I’m sure I’ll reach that point at some point in Dreamlight Valley, but right now with updates and a lot of open space to decorate that’s not happening anytime soon.

What do you think of Disney Dreamlight Valley?

Love ya,

Mae Polzine

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