When Should We Expect The Next Animal Crossing: New Horizons Update?

Fans have eagerly been awaiting the next substantial update to New Horizons for what feels like forever. We decided to look back on the previous update announcements and history to see if we can pinpoint what date and time we should expect the next update!

 **Disclaimer: The following information is based on previous trends. Anything contained within this article is pure speculation and should not be taken as fact**

To the casual fan, you may not think anything of it, but to the more eagle eyed watchers, there is a very distinct pattern when it comes to announcing and revealing the latest updates to New Horizons, and even just on Nintendo's Twitter. If you look at their Tweets, you will notice that most likely they have scheduled Tweets for certain times of the day. For easier reading, the times and dates we'll be referring to below are all in Australia Eastern Standard Time unless stated otherwise.

Version 1.0.0 was the base version of the game, with Version 1.1.0 being released on March 19th 2020, the day before release, which added the Bunny Day content. These two versions we can essentially ignore due to being pre-release. Do note we had a Nintendo Direct Mini on March 26th, 2020, which had a trailer, announcing the next update would be coming "late April".

The next big update was of course Version 1.2.0, which was announced on April 21st 2020 at 11:11pm, and came out on April 23rd 2020 at 11am. This one didn't give us any indication of when the next update would release, but it contained the Wedding Season content, which lasted until the end of June.

Version 1.3.0 (also known as the Summer Update Wave 1) was announced on June 25th 2020 at 11pm, released July 3rd 2020 at 11am, and teased the next update would be coming in early August. Version 1.4.0 (aka Summer Update Wave 2) was announced on July 28th 2020 at 11pm, came out July 30th 2020 at 11am, and told us the next update would come out in the Fall, teased with a picture of Jack. The new items included in the update included the Grape Harvest Basket for the month of September, and the Moon Rug from September 7th - October 9th.

Version 1.5.0 was announced on September 25th at 11pm, came out September 30th at 11am, and teased the next update for a late November release. Version 1.6.0 was announced at 1am on November 18th, released on November 19th at 11am, and teased the next update for late January. Version 1.7.0 was announced on January 27th at 1am, released on January 28th, and told us the next update would be released in March, which would include the Super Mario items; something we already knew from the Super Mario 35th Anniversary Direct from back in September 2020.

Version 1.8.0 was officially announced on February 18th during a Nintendo Direct that started at 9am, released on February 25th, though the Super Mario content couldn't be obtained until March, but, the content within the previous update lasted until March 17th with the Shamrock themed items. Version 1.9.0 was announced on March 17th at 12:01am, released on March 18th at 11am, with no teaser for the next update, but the last seasonal items being the Prom themed ones, lasting through the end of April. Finally, Version 1.10.0 was announced on April 26th at 11:03pm, and released on April 28th at 11am, with no specific teaser for the next update period...

Of course, there were smaller updates scattered around between the major ones, which Nintendo Life has archived over on their website, but the main content we're looking for is major content updates, not bug fixed. Now, at this point you're probably wondering how any of this gives us an idea of when we'll get an announcement for the next update...

If you go back and have a look, every major update gave us a tease of when to expect the next update. Those that didn't specifically have the teaser card at the end, instead, had seasonal items that could be obtained up until a certain date, and then had the next update announced around tha =t time. Judging by this, it's safe to assume the updates to the game are scheduled to release once the current versions content runs out. 

If we have a look at the latest update, Version 1.10.0, the last obtainable new* item is the Ship Wheel Door Decoration, which is obtainable until July 22nd. From here, we can determine that we're due for an update in late July. It's also worth noting that August is typically the month of the Fireworks Festival. With the current updates to the game, Fireworks in August can only be seen in the year 2020, and not 2021; which further indicates an update should be due out before the end of the month.
*Currently, the game also has the Springy Ride-On Horse seasonal item, obtainable until August 15th, but this is a repeat item introduced in an update from 2020

So we have a rough time frame of when to expect an update, but what dates and times should we look out for? It seems there's also a pattern for that, too! You'll notice the rough time for an update announcement is between 11pm and 1am. However, when you take into account Japan does not have DST, whilst Australia (between April and October) and the US (between March and November), it's understandable why the reveal times outside these months are not consistent with the 11pm reveal time.

If that doesn't make any sense to you, in short, around March - November, the updates have been announced at 11am AEST, which translates to 10pm JST, 9am EDT and 1pm UTC. Since we are in July, we should expect the next update to be announced at this time, too!

So now the only thing we need is the specific date... which is a little harder to pin down. We put the specific days of the reveal and release into this Super High Tech Pastebin, to see if there was any patterns. Whilst there isn't really any specific pattern, most of the time, the updates will release on the Thursday, and announced a few days before...

Now, the part you've all been waiting for... When will we get an announcement??? Based on all this data, we can speculate the most likely time for the update to release is at 11am AEST on July 29th, with an announcement being revealed 1-2 days before at 11pm AEST. There is a chance we could get a release this week, on July 22nd, but in 2 days time, the latter date seems more likely.

We would like to stress that even though we expect an update announced within the next ~7 days, nothing here should be taken as fact. This is simply fun speculation and research to see if we can find any patterns with their release schedule. What we can safely determine is the time they often push out announcements, but the rest is just pure luck and speculation.

It's also important to remember that there's no promise as to whether or not the next update will be the huge update everyone has been expecting, or just something small. Whatever the case is, please try to be respectful of each other, especially those involved in the game. At this point, it's just a waiting game.

As always, if you haven't already, be sure to follow us over on Twitter and TumblrFeel free to join our discord server too. We know things have been slow on the site recently, but we're very active on Twitter if you're looking to receive regular updates. 

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