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Never miss a weather event in Animal Crossing: New Horizons again

Animal Crossing: New Horizons has proven to be a bonafide hit for Nintendo. Releasing right around the time of shutdowns caused by the coronavirus outbreak, the game has given folks an opportunity to plan their own virtual community. However, some folks have expressed frustration with how random some of the events in the game can be, particularly when it comes to weather events and meteor showers. Now, it turns out there's a way that detail-oriented gamers can actually plan ahead for these particular events.

According to Lifehacker's David Murphy, there actually is a way to figure out when certain meteorological events will take place within Animal Crossing: New Horizons. In fact, it's possible to predict these events down to the second, meaning you won't waste any valuable gaming time waiting for something to happen that might never occur. All you need is a bit of know-how to utilize this data-mining tip.

The trick to this is learning your particular game's seed number. Every time you create an island in a copy of New Horizons, your island is assigned an internal seed number. To find out your seed number, you'll need to use the helpful program MeteoNook AlphaThis site will allow you to input different patterns you've observed in the game. For instance, if you saw a rainbow in the sky at a specific time of day, you can plug that info into MeteoNook Alpha. You can also narrow it down further with specific questions that MeteoNook Alpha asks about particular weather events. You can enter time stamps, meteor showers seen in the sky, and other specific details.

Through entering all of this info, the site will help you determine your specific seed number. Once you have your seed number generated, you can essentially pull up calendars on MeteoNook Alpha that will lay out what weather patterns and otherwise randomized events are coming up. This will allow you to better plan your gaming time around what's coming up in the world of your particular island.

As Murphy explains, "since your seed number is the window to how your island works, you'll be able to plan out your meteorological events, well, forever—or at least until Nintendo makes some kind of alteration that add in more weather to stare at, like tornadoes or what-have-you."

In other words, while Murphy specifically uses meteor showers as an example, this method is useful for predicting more than just those. This system will basically help you to plan around all events in Animal Crossing: New Horizons that are based around weather. It should be noted that this is only for players who want to plan things in such minute detail. So much of the appeal of the Animal Crossing series is the simulation of real life, which is aided by how randomized the events in the game appear to be. Knowing details like this down to the date and hour will remove a lot of the game's spontaneity, so just be warned before you go into all of this.

Some people enjoy manipulating the mechanics of the game to their advantage. For instance, some players use a method of essentially "time-traveling" within the game in order to speed up the growth of their crops or to access (or bypass) timed events within the game. This is accomplished by changing the console's internal clock, which in turn tricks the game into thinking that days or even weeks have passed. This does have a few drawbacks, including the crazy overgrowth of weeds and the like on your island, but it can also be helpful (as long as you don't mind bending the rules a little bit). 

Animal Crossing: New Horizons has proven to be something of a turning point for the series. In particular, fans have found ways of exploring different avenues of their second life through the game. One enterprising artist has used the game to provide an interactive art gallery for fellow artists who found themselves without venues during COVID-19 shutdowns. Another group has literally started a business picking weeds within the game for other players. That particular venture has been so successful that the gamers involved had to hire on more "staff" to help their weed-pulling business. In other words, people are finding fun ways of predicting and using certain aspects of the game to their benefit.

It's cool to see that players have become so invested in the game that they are able to pick up patterns and timeframes such as this and use them in such a unique way. It makes one excited to see what other kinds of discoveries are in store for New Horizons fans.