More than 40,000 people have signed an online petition calling for more inclusive Animal Crossing: New Horizons content. The petition, started more than two months ago by Taniesha Bracken-Hucks, calls for Animal Crossing designers to create additional hairstyles and accessory offerings.
As part of the best-selling Nintendo Switch game, players can create an avatar of their choice. The customization options include pre-made hairstyles and skin tones. At current, there are 22 hairstyles to choose from, Allure reports, and players can choose or create from additional options through the use of an in-game design application.
Although brands, companies, and players have come up with their own hairstyling and clothing options, Bracken-Hucks wants to see the game embrace more natural hairstyles. "When I finally decided to embrace and love my natural hair, I was so sad to see that I still didn't have that option to do so in a virtual world, too," she told Allure.
Bracken-Hucks has already mocked up some of the hair designs she wishes to see in the game. Her Initial creation, which featured curly hair, had gone viral on Facebook, and after others asked her to create a petition calling for the change, Bracken-Hucks obliged, DigitalTrends reported.
She shared some of her reasoning for inquiring about new hairstyles, writing on Change.org, "Every person should feel represented when playing a game they love and making their avatar. Ethnic hairstyles are often forgotten. In light of what is happening in America concerning Black rights, it would be amazing to have gamers of all races represented on all gaming platforms.”
Other supporters of the petition have also called for Nintendo to create hijabs and head scarves, with some suggesting that the game be altered to include an option where players can simply create their own hairstyles.
Nintendo has not yet responded, but as a recent call from Sims 4 players demonstrated, online pressure can work. After players called for Electronic Arts to create more skin tones for the Create-A-Sims process, the company responded, pledging that a fall update would bring additional options for players.