Animal Crossing New Horizons' DLC is out now, and all is right with the universe

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(Image credit: Nintendo)

Animal Crossing New Horizons' long-awaited Happy Home Paradise DLC is now live, following the premature launch of the free 2.0 update that added a bevy of new features, items and quality-of-life improvements to the Nintendo Switch favorite.

For many fans, the update in tandem with the new DLC expansion marks a second wind for the game, which many felt was lacking in content compared to other entries in the series.

From today, November 5, eager island denizens can purchase the Happy Home Paradise DLC pack for a one-time cost of $24.99 / £22.49. Alternatively, subscribers to the so-far-controversial Nintendo Switch Online Expansion Pack service can download the DLC from the Nintendo eShop at no extra cost.

Animal Crossing New Horizons The Roost

(Image credit: Nintendo)

The Happy Home Paradise DLC is something of a spiritual successor to Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer on the Nintendo 3DS. Much like that 2015 entry, players have the ability to design homes for swathes of adorable animal residents.

However, customization options have been dialled up to an almost absurd degree. Not only can you customize both interiors and exteriors of any given home, but you can also fit them with counters, partitions, and even change background noise and polish up furniture to give off a mirror sheen.

Additionally, islanders can take on bigger projects in designing public buildings like schools, restaurants, and hospitals, all of which can be populated and staffed by animal residents.

Of course, the DLC would've suffered if you couldn't take back what you've learned and earned to your home island. Thankfully, the Happy Home Paradise DLC lets you bring back partitions, counters, and exterior facades to use on your island.

Analysis: Animal Crossing saves the day once again

Back in March 2020, Animal Crossing New Horizons was released just as the global Covid-19 pandemic hit full swing. Back then, the game was viewed as a welcome respite from the uncertainty of the time, and no doubt contributed to it being one of the best-selling Switch games to date.

Now, the game has achieved much the same with the Happy Home Paradise DLC and 2.0 update, freshening up the game by adding a ton of content. For many, it's been a reason to return to their virtual island hangouts, spending a good deal of time removing the hundreds of weeds that have undoubtedly grown since.

And for some of us, it's represented a decent excuse to start with a fresh island (and certainly not because we forgot to transfer our old islands to our new Switch OLED consoles. Thanks, lack of cloud saves!).

And for those of you who aren't opting into the DLC package just yet, there's still plenty to do thanks to the new update. Islanders who have their paradise at a certain star rating can add The Roost to the museum, allowing players to chill out with Brewster the barista once again. Not only that, but Kapp'n makes his triumphant return and yes, he's as vocally gifted as ever.

Rhys Wood
Hardware Writer

Rhys is Hardware Writer for TechRadar Gaming, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Rhys has a strong love for all things gaming, including everything from triple A blockbusters to hidden indie gems. For Rhys, the highlights of the work are being able to test out top-notch gaming hardware, from controllers and headsets to VR and beyond. When he's not on the clock, you'll usually find him logged into Final Fantasy 14 and Sea of Thieves. Or taking massive Ls in Mario Party Superstars.