Amiibo support is coming to 'Animal Crossing: New Leaf'

Nintendo's adding a new feature to a 4-year-old 3DS game.

Animal Crossing and Amiibo seem like a match made in heaven: cute characters, and collectable toys. Sadly, the duo's first pairing turned out to be a shallow, dull board game without much replay value. Fans longed for a full Animal Crossing toys-to-life experience -- and this year, they're going to get it. Sort of. This fall, Nintendo will be updating the 3DS' 4-year-old Animal Crossing: New Leaf with Amiibo support.

Starting this fall, players with a New Nintendo 3DS or a 3DS NFC Amiibo reader will be able to use the figure and cards created for Animal Crossing: Amiibo Festival in 2012's New Leaf. Using an animal card will let you invite a character to live in your town, while Amiibo figures from other Nintendo series, like Splatoon, appear to unlock special in-game items. It's the kind of natural integration we'd expect from a newly released title -- so it's doubly impressive this functionality is being baked into a such an old game. The update is free, and should be available to 3DS owners later this year.