In the massively popular Nintendo game Animal Crossing: New Horizons, a big part of the fun is customizing your player’s virtual home. You can choose from all kinds of different styles and objects, decking out the interiors with all the little touches that make it feel like your own. In fact, if you’re really good at it, you can even get paid to do it for others.
A new job offer from Olivia’s, a luxury furniture and homeware brand based in London, is seeking virtual interior design consultants for the game, paying upwards of £40 per hour. To get the gig, you must have a working knowledge of the game, but you don’t even necessarily have to have previous job experience in interior design. What’s most important is simply how good you are at creating these virtual interiors.
Obviously, the gig is remote, so you can do it from anywhere and get paid to play. Those hired will evaluate their clients’ current setups, provide creative feedback, suggest new ideas that stay within their budgets, and create multiple designs for each client that can be switched up in the future.
“The release of Animal Crossing: New Horizons couldn’t have come at a better time,” says Olivia’s founder Nick Moutter. “With everyone social distancing… this game allows them to stay connected while immersing themselves in a virtual world away from the stresses and restrictions of current life.”
It’s a pretty unusual job, but it’s already possible for people to make money selling digital items in games like Second Life and Minecraft, so it only makes sense that more official employment like this might become more common in the future. What starts as a way to earn a little bit of extra money playing with digital home furnishings could very well spark a career in the emerging field of augmented/virtual reality design.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons offers players lots of opportunities to get creative. When setting up your spaces, you’re faced with all kind of decisions, like architectural styles, wall colors, textiles, patterns, surfaces, and furniture. With low stakes and practically anything you can think of at your fingertips, you can play around with things that are harder to experiment with in real life, like large expanses of bold wallpaper. Trying out different combinations and layouts could help many people hone their skills, even if they’ve never been particularly interested in real-world interior design before.
If you’re looking for some tips, many of the same concepts apply to both. Avoid placing furniture along the walls, and create individual zones of ‘floating’ furniture for an effect that’s both welcoming and functional. For instance, you might dedicate one corner of the living room to a reading area with an armchair, lamp, side table, houseplant and room divider screen. Make sure the furniture and rugs are proportionate to the scale of the room, and add some details that are uniquely you.
You can apply to be an official Olivia’s Animal Crossing: New Horizons virtual interior design consultant at the brand’s website. If you’re a player hoping to jazz up your own home in the game, the page offers a link to request the service, too. In the meantime, check out a guide to customizing furniture within the game, and find inspiration in the Reddit sub r/HorizonDesigns.
Images courtesy of Reddit users u/tilapiasenpai, u/Phantomdragon78, and u/MayorOfOHimark