Animal Crossing: New Horizons won’t support cloud saves according to producer

Nintendo’s Animal Crossing: New Horizons brings a number of modern features to the series—except one. The game’s producer confirmed recently confirmed that Animal Crossing: New Horizons won’t support cloud saves.

Talking to French news outlet Gamekult, Animal Crossing: New Horizons producer Higashi Nogami confirmed that the game would not support uploading saved games over the cloud. According to Nogami, the game won’t support cloud saves to prevent players from “manipulating time.”

By this, Nogami likely means what fans have termed “Time Travel.” This refers to players using various tricks to manually change the game’s in-game clock in order to take advantage of various seasonal events, plant growth rates, interest rates, villagers moving in and out of the town, and more.

In the same statement, Nogami stated that keeping to the in-game clock was one of the founding concepts of the series. As such, manipulating the clock can be considered a form of cheating.

Previous games had various ways for which players could manipulate the clock. This included actually changing the clock on the console itself. For Animal Crossing: New Horizons, it seems that Nintendo is worried about people restoring older saved games backed up in the cloud to somehow manipulate in-game time.

Now, manipulating the clock in previous games did create a number of draw backs for players. This includes players having to deal with overgrown weeds and insect infestations in their houses to Tom Nook’s shop actually getting downgraded, forcing players to redo their work to upgrade it again. However, New Horizons seems to be the first time Nintendo is directly addressing the issue through the game’s saved data.

Of course, with the Switch having the ability to connect to the internet, one wonders why Nintendo simply can’t have the game check with a centralized time server to prevent the time manipulation. Certainly, other games with seasonal events have allowed for cloud saves. However, the company probably doesn’t want to exclude players by giving Animal Crossing: New Horizons an always online component.