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Animal Crossing New Horizons | Reaching 5 Stars

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Co-Founder of Time Wasters. Favourites are Couch co-ops, games that can be made into drinking games, and anything open world. Grew up on Nintendo but I have been putting considerable time into the Playstation 4. Nintendo will always have my heart.
Animal Crossing New Horizons Reaching 5 Stars

So you’ve been working your ass off and still you haven’t been able to make it into that prestigious 5Star range for your island eh? Well don’t you worry! We haven’t either…..

Getting that top level rating for your island seems a lot tougher than I would have anticipated. You’re supposed to put the work into setting up and designing your island in a really appealing way but, as with most things in this game, no one really knows what that means. 

Everyone that you talk to or look into seems to have reached the 5 star rating has had different things to say in regards to how they got there. This either means that they stats required are somewhat random (within a range) per island. OR that they put so many items down, planted so many flowers and trees, that they surpass the number required in each category but have done it so drastically that they can’t narrow down the actual number required. 

animal crossing sitting around

We may not have exact numbers for you either but what we can do it let you know what needs to be done and let you go crazy doing (and overdoing) it to get all those stars. Remember to check in with Isabelle at Resident Services periodically to hear suggestions of what is lacking.

Key Elements:

  • Have the maximum number of residents for the island. 
  • Have all shops open and upgraded fully
  • Have 4 bridges/slopes 
  • Have flowers
  • Have trees
  • Have furniture and fences 
  • Keep your island clean of weeds, trash, and any items that you decide to just drop for a bit. 
animal crossing matching outfits with Norma

With those things in mind you can start aiming towards having that 5 Star Island and Golden watering can!

A lot of these things can be, and kind of have to be, done at the same time. Having the max number of residents does require you to upgrade the Resident’s services building. You’ll also unlock Nook’s Cranny, and likely the museum at the same time. These take various amounts of time to complete the upgrade so getting on them as fast as possible is always a good idea. 
Flowers and trees also take a long time (3 real life human days) to grow. So the more you can put down the better your chances at reaching 5 stars quickly. You can buy seeds and saplings at Nook’s Cranny but if you’re wanting to bypass the waiting time you can do that by going to mystery islands. 


Each shop requires different things to reach the final development. They are a time consuming but necessary step in reaching your 5 star status. Each one requires different things to have them appear, some even requiring the construction of others to be done first. 
Although you will likely complete all of them in your own time if you were to play through the game, we’ve created a guide to get all the buildings.

animal crossing entering town

Remaining Residents:

The total number of residents that you can have on the island is 10 (plus yourself and anyone else using the same console). The first three villager houses that you can add are kind of a pain to do. Not only do you place the plots for these houses but you’re also expected to find/craft all the furniture for them before people can move in. It can be done in a single day but it really can be a struggle to do so. 
After the first three have moved in you’ll be able to “purchase” land from Tom Nook in order to bring more people in. You have to pay the animal 10,000 bells to do so but you do receive 1000 Nook Miles when someone moves in! On the bright side you aren’t required to furnish the house meaning that one you pick the plot your work is over!
*Traveling to mystery islands is also the fastest way to get villagers, it also allows you to find and bring back fully grown trees and flowers but more on that below. 

Add slopes and bridges to your island
This one is pretty self explanatory but one of the expected requirements for reaching 5 stars is having a minimum of 4 Bridges and slopes built. A combination of the two totaling 4 or more, not 4 of each luckily. 

animal crossing remaining houses

Planting trees and flowers:

Planting trees and flowers is a pretty basic thing to accomplish.
You can purchase flower seeds from Timmy either at Nook’s Cranny or even before that when he is still situated in the Resident’s Building. You can also breed flowers to create more at no cost to yourself. It seems that there isn’t a requirement in terms of flower variations but you can create more colors than the ones sold in store by crossbreeding flowers.

Trees are even more simple than flowers. You can buy saplings at the store or bury fruit in order to grow new trees. It takes some days and the trees need to be a minimum of one space apart while growing to achieve full size. If you’re finding that the trees you’ve planted still aren’t growing try giving them even more space. The mechanic for growing them can be very finicky it seems. 

lot of flowers

Keeping your island clean:

Last, and apparently least, is keeping your island clean. From all accounts it is believed that although this does affect your islands rating it plays a very minimal role in the overall score than the other factors. This being said it is extremely easy to keep the weeds off the ground and put your stuff away properly. Every little bit helps.

Once you’ve managed to reach that coveted 5 Star rating you’ll be rewarded with the Golden Watering Can! This watering can is not only rumoured to be good for unlimited use, it also waters nine squares at once! Best of all watering your black roses with a golden watering can is the only way to get golden roses!
Best of luck and let us know if you’ve found anything different in getting your 5 star rating in the comments below.

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