When you first start crafting your little slice of heaven in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, you’ll get two villagers to jump-start your community. You can forge amazing friendships with these two pals, but eventually, you’ll start wondering what else is out there?
There are an astonishing 397 available Villagers available in the game, so why aren’t they coming to your island? With this guide, you'll be able to get 10 of them your island, but how do you choose?
How to expand your maximum villager count
After opening Blathers' museum early in the game by catching enough unique species, your next task will be investing in Nook’s Cranny, a shop run by Timmy and Tommy, which requires you to find 30 each of softwood, hardwood, wood, and Iron Nuggets. Once you've unlocked Nook's Cranny, you'll have access to new traversal mechanics like bridges and inclines, but more importantly, you'll also be able to invite new villagers.
Tom Nook himself will also give you the tools to create space for three additional villagers to join in on your island fun. After setting everything up, one new villager will visit the island every day. After three days, your resident total will reach 6 (that includes you!), and you’ll be able to invite even more folks to your island for a maximum of 10 villagers.
For every villager that joins, you’ll have to pay Tom Nook 10,000 Bells for a plot of land for them to reside in. Once an islander fills up the spot, you’ll be rewarded with 1,000 Nook Miles — so the investment seems worth it.
There are three ways to fill an empty space:
3. Travel to a mystery island
In addition to being the perfect place to gather Iron Nuggets, Mystery Islands double as the best places to find new villagers. You can purchase a Nook Miles ticket from the Nook Stop in Resident Services for 2,000 Nook Miles. Once purchased, take it to Orville at Dodo Airlines, and he’ll charter you a flight to a Mystery Island. These randomly generated islands have unique species with extra resources and an exclusive villager you can chat up and invite. Occasionally, these islands also might be infested with tarantulas.
After landing on the island, speak to the villager there twice to recruit them to your island. Be warned, this is a random villager. If you’re looking for a specific villager, the other two methods might be a bit more useful for your needs.
2. Build your campsite.
After you’ve built a bridge and established three sites for new villagers, this will trigger an upgrade to Resident Services that transforms it into a full-on building. After this, you’ll be able to build a campsite. New villagers will enter the campsite every day. As with Mystery Island Villagers, you can talk to them and encourage them to stay (if you want). You can also discourage them, allowing for a new Villager to take their place.
While this method is still random, at least you’re not wasting Nook Miles!
1. Use an amiibo
If you have a villager you’d love to have around and know their name, amiibo is the best method. After upgrading Resident Services to a building, you’ll be able to scan an amiibo at Resident Services’ Nook Stop. You can scan any previously released Animal Crossing amiibo or amiibo card. Once you scan a character in, they’ll be the next person to arrive at the campsite.
Keep in mind that you can’t invite NPCs that already have in-game roles like Isabelle or Resetti. The campsite can only be used once per day, so use it wisely.
If you don’t have an amiibo or amiibo card handy, specific ones can be purchased via second-hand markets like Amazon and eBay. A few outlets, like Walmart, still have Amiibo Card packs available as well. You can check how the villager you’re looking for fits into the Amiibo Card selection via Nintendo’s official website.
How to make villagers leave
If, for some reason, you’d like to downsize, villagers will leave if you're rude to them. Ignore them, hit them with your net, do just about anything to make them feel unwanted, and they will eventually say goodbye forever. It's one of the many ways that Animal Crossing: New Horizons resembles real life.
Alternatively, once you’ve upgraded Resident Services enough to bring Isabelle in, you can complain to her directly about a resident. Complain enough, and they’ll be forced to leave the island.
Now with all this information, proceed into the great unknown to populate and manage your island.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is currently available for Nintendo Switch.