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An island evaluated with a 5-star rating

Island evaluation is a service in New Horizons offered by Isabelle at Resident Services after the player completes the campsite on the deserted island and the first campsite visitor finishes moving in as a resident. Using a task force to survey island residents and visitors, Isabelle scores the island's popularity on a scale of 1 to 5 stars.

Increasing the island's star rating will unlock new milestones and rewards. After achieving a 3-star rating for the first time, Tom Nook will set into motion the final phase of Project K and ask K.K. Slider to hold a concert on the island. K.K.'s concert occurs the next day, or on the day after any pre-scheduled event, after which Tom Nook will present the player with the Island Designer app and K.K. will visit the island every Saturday or Friday. After achieving a 5-star rating for the first time, Isabelle will reward the player with the DIY recipe for the golden watering can, and lilies-of-the-valley will occasionally spawn on the island.

Ratings and requirements

To find out your island evaluation score, visit the Resident Services, and sit at Isabelle's counter. When she asks you what she can help you with, select "Island evals". Here she will give you your star rating, a review from a villager or special character on your island, and tips on how you can improve your island.

The island evaluation system is based on an internal point system that is translated into a simplified rating of 1-5 stars. The star rating values are split into two separate categories: Development and Scenery. In order to increase your star rating, you must meet certain thresholds in both of these categories.

  • 1-star: The starting rating. 6 villagers or fewer, 80 points or fewer in development, or 200 points or fewer in scenery. If you have 6 villagers, what would otherwise be a two star rating will drop to a one star rating.
  • 2-stars: Have at least 7 resident villagers (including those who have moved away, not including the player themselves). 80-159 points in development and 200-269 points in scenery. If you have 7 villagers, what would otherwise be a 3, 4, or 5 star rating would become a 2 star rating.
  • 3-stars: Have at least 8 villagers, 160-399 points in development, and 270-349 points in scenery. Achieving this rating for the first time allows K.K. Slider to begin visiting and unlocks the Island Designer app.
  • 4-stars: 400-664 points in development and 350-449 points in scenery.
  • 5-stars: The highest rating, which rewards the golden watering can DIY recipe; also, the rare lilies of the valley flower will only grow on 5-star islands. 665+ points in development and 450+ points in scenery.

Ways to Improve Island Rating

Island Scenery

  • Adding flowers and trees (including bamboo and coconut trees) around the island.
    • Trees are 1 point, and bushes are worth 0.5 points each. The combined sum of these two values cannot exceed 190.
    • Flower Sprouts are 0.5 points each
    • Flower Buds and Flower stems are 0.7 points each
    • Adult flowers are 1 point each.
  • Decorating the island with DIY furniture:
    • Furniture placed is graded on an 8x8 tile basis known as a block.
    • Each unique piece of furniture that is 3x1, 3x2, or 3x3 tile size is 1 point.
    • Furniture points is calculated using the number of furniture placed x 0.25 and if you have more than 10 unique types you get a bonus of the number of types x 0.75.

Island Development

  • Buildings and Structures
  • Decorating the island with any (both DIY and catalogable) furniture:
    • Furniture placed is graded on an 8x8 tile basis known as a block.
    • If there are less than 5 unique types of furniture placed: number of pieces of furniture x 1
    • If there are 5 to 10 unique types of furniture placed: number of pieces of furniture x 0.5 + number of types of furniture x 0.5.
    • If there are more than 10 unique types of furniture placed: number of pieces of furniture x 0.25 + number of types of furniture x 0.75
    • At 6 or more of the same item in the block, all extra copies of any item lose 0.5 points each. At 11 or more of the same item in the block, extra copies of any item lose 0.75 points each.
  • Furniture Type and Bonuses
    • If the placed furniture is recommended for the outdoors: Number of outdoor furniture x 0.5 additional points.
    • The placed furniture costs 2,000-20,000 bells: Number of applicable furniture x 1
    • The placed furniture costs over 20,000 bells: Number of applicable furniture x 2
    • Placed fences are worth 0.2 points each.
  • Removing Weeds
    • When there are 100 weeds or less on a given island, a bonus of 30 development points are given to the island.
    • When there are more than 100 weeds on a give island, a bonus of (1000 - Weeds) / 30 are given to the island.
  • Inviting more villagers
    • There is a development bonus of 15 if there are nine villagers, and a development bonus of 30 for having 10 villagers.

Negative Conditions

If any of these conditions are met, your town can achieve no more than 4 stars until they are rectified.

  • Clutter
    • Clutter is gauged in the same 8x8 tile divisions as furniture.
    • If 45/64 or more tiles are covered in the block, the block is considered cluttered.
    • Buildings, bridges, buried items, rocks, cliffs, rivers, and inclines will not count towards this.
  • Littering
    • If there are more than 15 small items dropped on the ground, your island will be deemed messy. Items that are "dropped" on-top of stalls and benches, as well as the message bottles that appear every day on your shore, will count towards "too many items lying around."
    • Naturally occurring items such as tree branches, stones, sea-shells, and star fragments do not count.
  • Excessive trees and bushes
    • Having more than 220 trees and bushes on the island (including hardwood trees, cedar trees, fruit trees, palm trees, and bamboo) will trigger this flag.
    • This can be solved by digging up or cutting down trees until the total number of trees falls below the limit.

Evaluation Feedback

Alongside the island's star rating, Isabelle will also read a feedback statement from one of the respondents to her surveys, usually a special visitor. In the case of feedback for 1-star islands, all statements are provided by only one respondent, Wisp, due to the island's insufficient population and low tourism.

1-star

I like how there aren't any ghosts around. It's a place where free spirits like me can just be free!
Wisp
It's great that there isn't too much going on. I hope it'll stay nice and unassuming, like me.
Wisp
It's a place I've been quietly watching. It's a secret to everybody. I don't want it to be famous.
Wisp

2-stars

I keep hearin' all things should be in moderation, but an island's image is worth workin' hard for, ain't it? Well, me an' my bro'll be backin' you up from behind the scenes, so you better just do your best, capisce?
Resetti
I've been shipwrecked there a few times, so I consider myself an authority—and I've got ideas! Here's one. I feel like a fella's rescue party might arrive a BIT sooner if that place had more stuff going on. Add some hustle! Add some bustle! Make your island a port of call that'll turn heads and drop anchors.
Gulliver
It's like when a snowperson is built juuuust right. Sure, it's a good thing to be well made and to feel the love. But I don't know that a snowperson would get the proper attention here. That's my take, anyway.
Snowman

3-stars

(player's island), man... Hearing about how chill it is... I'd go if I had the chance. -K.S.
K.K. Slider (only seen after achieving 3-stars for the first time)
It's been growing real nice, like a big tree that's getting plenty of love and care. I'll be visiting a lot, tryin' to copy its secret sauce for success for my artists' collective!
Harvey
Talkin' as one of two birds who've seen EVERYONE come and go from here, this place is goin' places! Keep up the good work! We'd love to need a second plane someday.
Orville
I look forward to my Sunday visits. When Gram-Gram's knees get better, it'd be swell to bring her with me!
Daisy Mae

4-stars

I started visiting the island because my brother moved here, but I instantly fell in love with the place! Many communities build themselves so big and bright that you can hardly make out a star in the night sky... Not on (player's island)! I shall be a regular visitor to its shores—and skies!—for some time.
Celeste

Back in my day, the key to a good life was a low reset rate. Ya feel what I'm gettin' at? What I'm sayin' is, this here (player's island) ya got goin' on? This is one sharp locale! Got that?
Resetti

This is a good island, filled with good feet that know the value of a good rug. Visitations are pleasant.
Saharah

5-stars

I've got reel strong feelings for that island. It's SUCH a catch. As soon as I made landfall, I knew I was hooked. Even the scale of the place schools the rest. Plus, everyone there's, like, my chum. Yeah, it's fintastic! Nyuk!
C.J.
This roiled throne of bugs, this sceptered isle, this hive of majesty... This infested plot, this earth, this terrarium, this (player's island).
Flick
Number one on the list of islands that snowpeople want to be born on at least once: (player's island)! I can't wait for one of your island residents to roll me up and give me life in this beautiful place!
Snowman
Number one on the list of islands that snowpeople want to be born on at least once: (player's island)! Next winter, I want someone who lives on this island to roll me up and give me life!
Snowman

Trivia

  • As Wisp is the only character to provide feedback for one-star islands, it can be assumed that islands in this state are considered to be ghost towns.


NewHorizons Animal Crossing: New Horizons
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