I woke too early for schedule Thursday morning and managed to avoid writing anything by picking up my DS. I had intended to relax, but I went for the old game of Animal Crossing: Wild World, from which I had been absent for ten months, according to the animal-character friends of my playable character, Alexa.
I remember ACWW well from my childhood. If we ignore the various absences I took for my schoolife, I have been playing that game for a good eight years or so – since my last year of Primary School. Because it’s not a ‘platform’ or level game, the gameplay is infinite according to the needs of the user. And I have quite a lot of history with ACWW – before I became a ‘proper’ writer, I had written the tales of my character(s) into an on-going story that charted their life in a sleepy town trying to get rich. ‘Write what you know’ indeed! After that, I swapped its first-person past format for a choose-your-own add-venture of sorts.
So, there I came, playing the game again. It’s amazing how I remember the majority of the controls, except A and Y, which I keep getting mixed up. And, as I probably had done many a time before, I set myself (or more precisely: Alexa) some goals:
2. Catch a scorpion
3. Catch the bug absent from each character’s lists. (edit: I looked it up, and I’m missing a Banded Dragonfly.)
Well, the Oak Silk Moth… Time was almost 11pm on that Thursday night when I finally spotted the broad wings spread across a tree. I shouldn’t have taken so long to come across one large bug, but I did spend the hours trailing. I edged up close to the waterbank, halting at every cautious flutter of the creature’s wings. I’d lost it to haste before; I wasn’t going to spend these nights within the same fate.
Then, ‘snap’ came the net, across the goliath bug. Caught, it flapped helplessly in my hands as it displayed it and my pride.
As for the scorpion…well, I was about to give up on Friday night at 11.30, having been bitten twice by scorpions and once by a tarantula (the two Arachnids basically play the same role). The sneaky critters are on the attack – my second encounter with a scorpion was a casual trip to the beach, where it was lurking and pounced on me before I even know of its presence in that place. As you can guess, after this time, I was formulating a plan. The scorpions (and tarantulas) like the offensive – therefore, I had two options: attack at senseless speed and hope to be the first, or sneak up and hope the creature doesn’t smell/see me. I’m not afraid of these in real life (okay, maybe tarantulas…), but in the game they bear a pretty menacing shuffle.
As I said, I was about to give up, when I heard some familiar rustling from the bridge near my position. A scorpion, rotating on the point as I walked up to it.
I walked back down the other way. In fact, I ran, happy to see that it didn’t follow. I tested the creature a couple more times, pushing myself as close as I could without it tracking me. Then, one of my neighbours starting walking about the night, causing the beast to shuffle horizontally.
But this could add to my plan… It worked to my advantage. I had little time, and, with a tired mind, I lunged, net waving, in the attack at senseless speed option.
But I threw my net down – and the white flag hit its target!
11pm… I don’t think I’ve been out in my town, Joyville, so late before. My audio memory tolled only faint bells about the hourly music, though it reminded me partly of Professor Layton cafe scene motifs. At that time, Nookington’s plays a lullabic version of God Save the King minutes before closing. It’s rather bizarre, to be honest.
It feels as if I have done so much since I re-started/continued playing. I caught two sharks (one great white, one hammerhead), discovered two fish that Alexa hadn’t previously, and saw a shooting star, though I was too slow to wish on it.
And a squirrel friend told me, “You ought to get stoked up about your writing, too.” Indeed!
I should be Alexa more often. Hehe, I love being a gamer. This is oddly fulfilling.
I found an awesome full list of the bugs (in order, too), including selling prices and peak catching times.