Don’t be afraid to start over!

Animal Crossing is a land full of adventure, but there comes a point where you have played enough to be blocked from progressing in the manner that you wish. 

Whether you destroyed all your rocks or didn’t get the fruit you wanted there are plenty of reasons that you may want to restart your island in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Let’s face it, island living can be hard and sometimes you just need a redo, there is no shame in it! In this guide, we will explain how to restart your game in Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

Update 8/17/21: Nintendo plans to release more seasonal content for Animal Crossing: New Horizons throughout the remaining months of 2021. Learn more about Nintendo's content plans here.

As you might expect, you’ll have to jump through some hoops if you want to delete your New Horizons game and reset your island. Thankfully, it’s not impossible, and there are actually two different ways to go about erasing your game. Let’s start with the sure-fire, delete everything method first.

To completely restart your game in New Horizons, you’ll need to follow the steps below. However, please be aware that this will completely delete everything on your Switch related to the game. It’ll be like you’re putting the game in for the first time on a brand new Switch. 

Here are 4 simple steps to restart your island:

  1. Open the Switch Main Menu
  2. Go to the System Settings tab
  3. Select “Data Management”
  4. Select “Delete Save Data”
  5. Choose “Animal Crossing: New Horizons”

Wahla! Next time you open up the game, it’ll be like you’re playing it for the first time and you’ll have the opportunity to rename your island, select a layout, etc. The other option is to delete a character profile on your game, but there is one catch. If you’re the founder of the island, this option won’t work for you. However, if you merely want to delete a secondary character, then you’re in luck.

How to delete a character:

  1. Open New Horizons
  2. Press the Minus button on your Switch to open the Main Menu
  3. Press Minus again to open the Save Data section
  4. Select “Delete Resident Registration”

Now that you have a fresh start, you can give island living another go. Further, if you mess up again or don’t like something about your island, you can do this as many times as you’d like. However, it’ll be best to decide sooner rather than later if you want to restart your game, as you’re going to lose all of your progress upon starting a new island. 

Related: Animal Crossing: New Horizons Player Hilariously Recreates Star Wars High Ground Meme

Additionally, it’s hard to play New Horizons quickly, as it’s a real-time game. An hour in-game is the same as an hour in the real world, so you won’t be able to quickly catch up after restarting the game. So if this is something you’re considering, make sure you think it through!

Once you’ve settled on the perfect island, be sure to check out some of the events that are happening on your island. For example, in June there is a wedding event which will give you exclusive wedding furniture if you participate. You can also catch a lot of bugs and fish every month, so be sure to check back to our homepage for some guides. We’ve also listed some of our favorites below.

How many times have you restarted your island? We promise not to judge you. Let us know on Twitter or Facebook!