Birthdays are celebrated in the Animal Crossing series by both the player and animal villagers of the player's town. They do not form an important part of the game, but add to the overall authenticity of the character's life. The player can choose their birthday when asked by a villager. This forms the first true conversation a player encounters in the game. Any date can be chosen for the player's birthday - if they select a date that is the same as the villager's in Wild World or City Folk, the animal will realize this and appear shocked. The birthday will not appear if there is another player from another town
Birthdays with special characters cannot be celebrated.
In Animal Crossing
When the player leaves his or her house, he or she is greeted by a random villager. The villager will wish the player a happy birthday, and give the player a present. The player will also find letters and presents in their mailbox from some of the other villagers also wishing that player a happy birthday, including a birthday cake from Mom. However, the item can't be eaten; it can only be displayed in the player's house.
In Wild World
This is the first game in which villagers also have birthdays - the player can visit them in their house on that day, where they will be walking around their home with a fellow villager that they get along with, usually one of the same gender. On a villager's birthday, the villager will wake up an hour later than the normal. The player can give any item to the villager that is celebrating their birthday for a gift. They will then give you something in return. (simple things like wallpaper) The two villagers in the room, if near to each other, may applaud and laugh. A player can tell if it is a villager's birthday by a letter that is distributed by the animal, and a notice that appears on the bulletin board on the day.
The player themselves will receive a birthday cake, which can only be displayed once again, when they start the game on the day that is assigned as their birthday. The player will also receive a letter and a present from their mother and all other villagers. Resetti also won't appear if one does not save before ending the game.
In City Folk
Unlike in Wild World, villagers do not celebrate their birthdays, despite a notice on the bulletin board that congratulates them. Instead, a player can send the villager a letter on that day. The villager then thanks the player for wishing them a happy birthday in their reply.
As with Wild World, the player is presented with a cake on their birthday by a villager. In this game, the player finally has the option to eat the cake. If they do, they will blush and flowers briefly blossom from them. The player's mailbox is also full of letters wishing you a happy birthday. Each letter is from a villager, you get a letter from each villager in your town except the villager that delivered your birthday cake. Mom sends you a letter that contains 5,000 bells.
In New Leaf
- "Today is your birthday isn't it? Happy birthday!"
- — Isabelle at spotlight, upon first load on the player's birthday.
Similar to City Folk, a random villager will be waiting outside the player's house. However, in New Leaf, they will proceed to invite the player to their house for a surprise. Their house will load shortly afterwards, revealing two other villagers and a large birthday cake in the center of the room. They will shout "Happy Birthday!" upon entering, while the villager who invited the player will wish them a happy year ahead of them. The player can then be controlled to walk up to the cake. When pressing "A" in front of it, the villagers will tell you to make a wish. The candles can then be blown out by blowing on the Nintendo 3DS, which will pick up the sound through the microphone.
Once blown out, the villagers will let off party poppers and begin clapping. The host villager will give the player a present and tell the player they are their best friend. Once the player leaves, the game will resume normally.
The Saturday before the player's birthday, or on the player's birthday if it is on a Saturday, K.K. Slider will play K.K. Birthday as a birthday gift. K.K. Slider will mail a copy of the song the next day. The player must have visited Club LOL prior to this however, otherwise the song will never play.
For a villager's birthday, the villager will send a letter a week from their birthday to announce the event. On the actual day, they stay in their house with one other villager. When you come in, they will greet you, and if you talk to them again, you can give them a present. They will continue celebrating for the rest of the day. Their house will have cake, furniture, and a CD Player with K.K. Birthday.
List of Villager Birthdays in New Leaf
If the player is a new player and has not met anyone in town, then the birthday party will not happen until later.