The very first Animal Crossing game released overseas censored a famous painting called Olympia, as it depicted a woman who wasn’t wearing clothes.
The Animal Crossing series might seem like the last Nintendo franchise to ever contain questionable content, but there have been instances of nudity apparently needing to be censored in the past. The strangest thing is that the Animal Crossing series later embraced historical nudity in New Horizons.
The first game in the Animal Crossing series was Doubutsu no Mori for the Nintendo 64, which was only released in Japan. The original Animal Crossing game on the Nintendo GameCube was a localized version of Doubutsu no Mori+, which was an enhanced port of the Nintendo 64 original. Animal Crossing received a number of changes in the localization process, such as changing the holidays from Japanese ones to western ones.
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Nintendo once had a reputation for censoring games on its platforms. This sometimes involved censoring its first-party Nintendo franchises during the localization process, like removing the religious symbolism in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. The original Animal Crossing also faced censorship, as a painting that could be acquired by players showed a little too much pixelated skin.
Animal Crossing’s Cut Olympia Painting
According to The Cutting Room Floor, Doubutsu no Mori and Doubutsu no Mori+ featured a painting based on Édouard Manet’s Olympia, which showed a naked woman lying on a bed. The image on Animal Crossing’s painting can barely be matched to the original, as it was made with the hardware of the Nintendo 64, but the pixelated nudity must have been too much, as it was replaced with a painting based on Emanuel Leutze’s Washington Crossing the Delaware. This wasn’t the only painting removed in Animal Crossing, as ones based on Edvard Munch’s The Scream and Piet Mondrian’s Composition with Red, Yellow, and Blue were also removed from the game, as they had yet to enter the public domain.
The most surprising aspect of the nudity in Animal Crossing is that Nintendo completely reversed its position in New Leaf and New Horizons. It’s possible to own a painting of Eugène Delacroix’s Liberty Leading the People, a statue of the Venus de Milo, and a replica of Michelangelo’s David, all of which depict naked people. There is a distinction in media made for artistic nudity, which allows it to appear uncensored. In the past, Masahiro Sakurai has said that he is worried about including Mai from King of Fighters in a Smash Bros. background cameo, due to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate being for “good boys and girls,” while, because of the art’s historical importance, Tom Nook is free to add as much nudity to Animal Crossing as he wants.
Next: Animal Crossing Desperately Needs Substantial New Content Updates
Source: The Cutting Room Floor
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