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How to time travel in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

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If the game is progressing a little too slowly, you can speed it up

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A Kangaroo sits dreamily on the grass while an Animal Crossing characters stands with a pole vault Image: Nintendo via Polygon

Animal Crossing: New Horizons on Switch plays in real time, meaning that a day in the game is as long as a day in real life. If you want to speed up your progress, you can time travel.

Rather than waiting until the next real-world day, time traveling lets you and see your new home renovations or new building quickly.

To time travel on your Switch:

  1. Close Animal Crossing: New Horizons by pressing the Switch’s Home button, highlighting the game’s icon, pressing the X button, and clicking “Close” in the dialogue box that appears.
  2. Go to your Nintendo Switch System Settings (the gear icon on the home screen), scroll all the way down, and select “System.”
  3. Select “Date and Time,” and turn off the setting that says “Synchronize Clock via Internet.”
  4. Change the date or the time to whatever you want.
  5. Reopen the game, and the date and time in New Horizons will match whatever you set it to in the Switch’s system preferences.

Be careful about skipping too many days at once, as skipping forward weeks at a time will yield the same results as not playing for weeks at a time: Your villagers may move out, and weeds will move in.

Keep in mind that you will have to connect to the internet to verify the date before you participate in holiday-based events. The Bunny Day event, which starts on April 1, will require you to connect to the internet to verify your time, according to a post on the Japanese Nintendo website. This means that if you do choose to time travel, you’ll have to set your Switch to the normal date to play any of the upcoming events.