Biden-Harris presidential campaign targets Animal Crossing community with in-game yard signs

In a fresh attempt to reach potential voters online ahead of November’s election, the team has designed four posters to download and pitch on your virtual front lawn.

Date
2 September 2020
Reading Time
2 minute read

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Until now, the gathering pace of the US presidential campaigns and the unstoppable force that is Animal Crossing have existed in parallel worlds. But the Joe Biden Kamala Harris campaign has converged the two, seeing an opportunity to reach AC’s millions of players with in-game yard signs – much like the real-life ones supporters pitch on their front lawns, only virtual.

There are four to choose from and download: the official Biden-Harris logo, the Team Joe logo, the Joe Pride logo, and another featuring Biden’s trademark aviators in the good ol’ red white and blue. Players can access the signs by scanning QR codes through the Nintendo Switch online app.

During lockdown, plenty of otherwise real-world scenarios, events and campaigns have taken to Animal Crossing, where a rapidly expanded community looked to connect with others and pass the time at home. Pride took place in the #GlobalPrideCrossing, Stephanie Unger created a virtual art exhibition, and as Alif Ibrahim explored in our feature Is Animal Crossing: New Horizons the answer to renewing our creative energy, upcycling queen Nicole McLaughlin built herself a studio there, and the Met uploaded 406,000 open-access artworks for players to download. Lazy Oaf and Valentino are just some of the brands who’ve recreated their apparel in the game.

On the presidential trail, candidates have had to find inventive ways to reach people in a safe way. Instead of rallies, Biden’s campaign has staged live-streamed events and socially distanced interviews, and the Democratic National Convention was held online. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (star of documentary Knock Down the House), joined the game in May and began visiting her supporters’ islands.

Director of digital partnerships for the Biden-Harris campaign said in a statement: “As we enter the final campaign stretch towards November, this is one way we are finding new creative and innovative ways to meet voters where they are and bring our supporters together.” The Verge also reported that Biden’s team plans to enlist gaming influencers to use the signs in their own islands, and plans to launch similar initiatives with other digital platforms.

GalleryCourtesy of Nintendo and Biden-Harris campaign (2020)

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About the Author

Jenny Brewer

Jenny joined the editorial team as It’s Nice That’s first news editor in April 2016. Having studied 3D Design, she has spent the last ten years working in design journalism. Contact her with news stories relating to the creative industries on news@itsnicethat.com.

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