Game Ideas

Spin-off Idea: Shop Manager

Week Six is at the closing point, and today is Idea Friday. In the past two weeks, I talked about Animal Crossing game ideas that are extensions to previous features. This time, I have talked about a completely different game. It’s a Tycoon game, but hey, it’s Animal Crossing. Like previous games, the human will be the shop owner, as you can only operate one shop. You can start a new shop, but that will require deleting your old shop. You still have the same money and character.

The purpose of the game is to run a shop, sell items, make Bells, and satisfy the customers. It works like a Tycoon game, and it might be the most educational Animal Crossing game. There are some challenges in the game like picky animals, ghost invasions, and mini-scenarios. This blog sounds like a game guide, but I write my game ideas as guides, just to give you a tip of what it’s like.

Basics of Gameplay

The first step is to create a character. Then you will begin the tutorials by Timmy and Tommy. They will teach you how to play the game. There are only two tutorials. One is about the basics and design, and the other is on money matters. When you are complete, you will begin running your shop.

The shop has six different models. You have a general store, a convenience store, a supermarket, a home center, a department store, and a mini-mall. You will start out with the general store, but every time you want to remodel, you will go up a stage. When you get to the mall, you can choose to downgrade your store anytime if you like.

Fiscal Year:

Every fiscal year begins at the date you choose to start it at. It has to be on the first of the month, and it doesn’t have to be in January. The fiscal year you choose for the shop becomes a fixed schedule permanently UNTIL you sell your shop. However, no matter what day you choose your fiscal year to begin on, the year number (not Year 1 or Year 2, but 2014 and 2015) changes in January.

The real life time scale is different to the game’s. Every five minutes in real life, one hour has passed in-game. Also, when the store closes, you will get a report, so you can save and quit or save and continue. It appears that 2 hours of playtime per day means one day have passed (in case if the store is open 24 hours). The shorter the opening hours, the more time you can pass.

Hours of Operation:

The hours of operation is also the time your shop is open. You can choose what time your store opens or closes. There are advantages and disadvantages of however you operate your store. Longer hours of opening means that you will have more time for villagers to come to your shop and purchase what you sell. It’s also good for increasing probability of your items to be sold. If you prefer reduced expenses or passing through time faster, shorter hours are more recommended than longer hours.

The daytime and nighttime operations also have different effects. Due to a competitor that’s always open at day, you might not have as many shoppers during the day. This means more shoppers will appear at night than at day, thus increasing your chances of items being sold. However, ghosts tend to appear in shops at night, only if they are open. They aren’t good for business either.

To set what time your store is open, there is a schedule where you can decide on opening and closing times. You need to have your store open for at least four hours, but 20 is the longest you can keep it open.

Designing your shop:

During the closing hours, you will have an option of changing your shop settings. Some include hiring new workers, deciding on uniforms, changing opening times (this will require your store to be closed for a whole day), and changing the stock.

But one thing that you can do while you wait till the store opens is change the layout. This way, time will stop, as you can change the design of the store.

You will unlock the ability to change carpet and wallpaper once you upgrade to the convenience store, but changing the display stands, merchandise wall patterns and rugs (for sale of items), and other decorative furniture can be used at any time. The designing mechanic is similar to ACHHD’s, but only for your shop. Keep in mind that some merchandise stands are for certain commodities. For example, you wouldn’t use a grocery store shelf for clothes or a garden store stand for sporting equipment. Also, rugs are for larger items that can’t fit on display stands.

You can design the outside as well. You can choose between light colors, canopy colors, store name, and style of shop. This only works on the convenience store and beyond.

Stocking:

Everyday, it is required that you don’t sell the same items as the previous day, and recommended that you don’t stock them more than twice a week. If an item hasn’t been sold, it needs to be taken down and replaced. In addition, you can only stock what you are provided.

Each time you stock an item, it costs money. Add to that, you can change the price of the item to anything you like. Keep in mind that the stock price is the minimum you can set it at. The base price is twice the stock price. The higher you price it, the more you would profit from it, but it also shrinks the pool of potential villagers that would buy your product. If the price is above the critical price (five times the base price), then it will never be sold. There are some cheapskate animals that wouldn’t even bother buying items at base price, while there are also animals like the normal villagers that doesn’t mind buying at the critical price or 80% as much as the critical price.

There are many commodities you can choose from. However, if you have more than one commodity, there will be a tax on all items. For every item sold, you have to pay a 5% tax with two commodoties, 10% with three, and 15% with four. Beyond that, you cannot sell anymore than from four different commodities. The mini-mall and department store are a bit different because of the different shops to choose from, but in each sub-shop, the commodity rule still applies.

The following eight commodities include these categories:

  • Housing – furniture, carpet, wallpaper, appliances, and electronics
  • Clothes – tops, bottoms, dresses, hats, accessories, footwear, and umbrellas
  • Entertainment – music, stationary, wrapping paper, toys & games, and balloons
  • Instruments
  • Sporting goods – also including the tools
  • Commercial furniture
  • Food – groceries, fast food, and fruit
  • Gardening – flower seeds, saplings, bush starts, and house plants

Animals will be happy with anything you provide. And if you use more than one commodity, but only one is being sold, the commodity rule won’t apply.

Some items, more typically holiday items, are only available at a certain time of the year. Others are available all year.

Types of shops:

The shop, as it gets remodeled, will get bigger and possibly have more rooms. The models and layouts are different within each, but you can still keep the opening times if you like. Keep in mind that the general store can only be open from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM, so you can’t adjust its opening times whatsoever. However, starting with the convenience store, the larger the shop is, the higher the expenses are, which means to keep them balanced, you have to cut back opening hours.

The convenience store and supermarket can be kept open as long as possible, but the department store and mini-mall are better off if you kept the hours short. As the maximum hours is 20 and the minimum hours is 4, you would want to keep the convenience store open for 18 hours, as well as the mall open for 6 hours. Remember, the longer the shop are open, the more likely your merchandise will be sold. But larger shops will draw in more customers, especially if operated at only night. And you can put more into a shop.

The convenience store is 6×10 spaces, supermarket is 8×12, home center is 10×16 with an additional 6×6 room, department store is two 12×12 rooms with an 8×10 room on top. The mini-mall is a five-room shop with four 8×8 shops and an 8×16 lobby. Here’s an important part. If you have more than one room, you will need to hire another employee, and it’s a customizable character since he/she is a human. The more shops, the more employees. You can chat with your employees and shoppers too.

Money making:

The purpose of the game is to make money. You may also want to target a large shop rating and shop value. Here are some ways to make money:

  • Selling – the higher the price, the more you will make. You will profit from it at any price above stock price.
  • Interest – you can deposit Bells in the bank. You will have less on your hand, but you may earn interest for keeping your Bells in the bank. The rate is 1%.
  • Donations – if you are running low on Bells on your first time or if you have a really good holiday promotion, you may receive donations of Bells to keep your shop open.
  • Challenges – if you complete some of Timmy’s and Tommy’s challenges, you will get a 100,000 Bell bonus.
  • Borrowing debt – if you need more Bells, you can borrow a debt. You can only go up to 500,000 Bells, but having a lot of Bells with no debt means you have a good sense of money making. But keep in mind that you will need to pay back your debt. Interests can take Bells off of your hands.
  • Shop decoration deletion – if you delete display posters, display rugs, or display stands, this having less to sell, you may earn back Bells. You can also earn Bells for getting rid of other decorations or services, but that may lower your shop rating.

And here are the ways to lose money:

  • Shop decoration – each item you place, display furniture or not, you will spend Bells.
  • Expenses – utilities, wages for other employees, and stock will cost money. The larger your shop, and the longer it’s open, the more you will spend.
  • Ghosts – beware! Some ghosts can steal money from your shop. They will appear even if the lights are on.
  • Advertising – good to get customers in, but bad for expenses. Use sparingly.
  • Promotions – when you host a promotion, you will need to spend money for it.
  • Commodity tax – if you have more than one commodity in a room, you will have a 5% tax increase for every extra commodity.

And by the way, changing the wallpaper and flooring of each room had no cost.

If you go bankrupt, you will need to withdraw your savings or borrow more loan. If you have no savings, and if your loan is maxed out, bankruptcy will put you out of business, and you may need to go back to operating the general store. If you’re business is doing poorly when it comes to shop rating or assets, Resetti may pop out and warn you about what will happen to your shop.

Ghosts:

Every night from 11:00 PM to 4:59 AM, there is a chance that your shop will be haunted by ghosts. As long as the other shop is closed and yours is open, you will draw more customers. The downside – ghosts may appear. Here are the properties that may increase ghost risk:

  • Shop size – ghosts like to haunt shoppers at larger shops. If you have a mini-mall open only during the ghost hours, then every hour is in the danger zone. You won’t have any at the convenience store, but starting with the supermarket, you will begin seeing a ghastly risk.
  • Time of the year – November, December, and January are the months that ghosts will appear the least. Ghosts may be supernatual, but they are sensitive to the cold. Instead, you might have Holiday ghosts, and they only like to ruin promotions. May, June, and July have the highest ghost risk.
  • Profit – if you’re making more than twice as much as you spend, you may lure in more ghosts. Single-commodity shops are in a higher risk. Lack of advertising and lower debts also mean more ghosts. Basically, they will haunt any shop with a lot of money with little spending.
  • Lack of protection – this is the only way to keep ghosts out. No protection means more ghosts.
  • Promotions – having promotional events like spotlight day or Halloween sales may be nice, but that also means more ghosts will come, more specifically holiday ghosts.
  • Poor shop rating – this will get you to punish you for having poor ratings for your store.

Here are the following things ghosts can do to your store:

  • Scaring customers – this can drive them out of your shop with no items bought.
  • Theft – a certain type of ghost can take a huge chunk of Bells. The more you make, the more you can lose.
  • Holiday bashing – holiday ghosts are prone to occurring all year. If you have a promotional event, they would love to ruin your store.
  • Shop rating – more ghosts mean your shop rating and shop value may drop. Selling your shop won’t give you a profit.

To keep ghosts out, you will need to hire a ghost repellent. It’s a human that will scare ghosts away. You can also place ghost security measures in the shop. There’s no need to do so if you run a convenience store or if your shop is closed throughout the entire ghost hours. This will cost a lot of money, but at least you can keep the ghosts out.

Shopper probability:

Some shoppers don’t mind higher prices, but others are very cheap. Here are the personalities of what the maximum price an item can be in order for it to sell:

  • Normal – critical price (5x the base price)
  • Lazy – 4x the base price
  • Smug – 3x the base price
  • Uchi – 2x the base price
  • Jock – 1.5x the base price
  • Peppy – base price
  • Cranky – 87% the base price
  • Snooty – 75% the base price

Occasionally, you may meet shoppers that are out of the norm, but the maximum of each is the norm. That, and there are some items shoppers will want more. They won’t even mind spending a high price, but the critical price is still the highest.

Challenges:

Every once in a while, Timmy and Tommy will host a challenge for you. The challenge feature will appear once you have the convenience store. Common challenges include:

  • Shop rating challenges
  • Sell X number of items from a specific theme
  • Money making challenge

They are timed, so if you fail your objective, you won’t play again for a while. If you pass, you will earn more Bells, and even unlock new items to sell or decorate your shop.

That’s all I have to say about this idea. There are more spin-off ideas coming each Friday.

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