Animal Crossing could not only be making a console return, but also be branching out onto non-Nintendo hardware.
The series' producer Katsuya Eguchi told Polygon that while he feels the game is best suited to handhelds, the right idea could see it return to consoles – although possibly not the Wii U.
If we were to create an Animal Crossing for a home console, I think we would really have to invent a new style that's suitable for the platform,” he said. The environment in which the player is playing the game is very important, so we need to think that through before we start creating something like that.
"We might not have been able to do that for Wii but whether it's the Wii U or a future hardware, it's important to think about what environment the player will be in."
Even more surprisingly, Eguchi said that while he has certain reservations about the idea, there's also the possibility that some sort of AC game could arrive on non-Nintendo hardware.
We really use [the 3DS hardware] to its fullest to get the maximum amount of joy, so I personally don't agree with the sentiment [that Animal Crossing would work on mobile devices],” he added.
"At the same time, we don't want to force a player to be tied down to a Nintendo device. If we were to be able to do something that supports playing on a Nintendo device, something that relates to the information content of the game, something that brings players back to the main game, if it's something that can work as a catalyst to get players back into the game, it's something we might look into."
Nintendo president Iwata has already confirmed that the company is investigating how to extend its IP on to mobile, although he has insisted that this will not include porting or creating full games for smartphones.