Saturday, February 24, 2024

Animal Crossing New Horizons 5 Star Island Rating Guide (Final)


In Animal Crossing: New Horizons, you can check your island’s state and the environment through Island evals. This option will be found in Resident Services while you are having a chat with Isabelle. In this Animal Crossing: New Horizons guide, we will tell you how to improve your island rating in this guide.

Conversing with Isabelle will keep you informed about the satisfaction of the villagers, and general information about your island regarding its looks and how it feels to the residents living on it.

You will also be receiving a star rating when you talk with Isabelle. You need to raise this rating so you can attract more visitors and tourists to your island. If you manage to gain 3-stars, you can have a KK Slider to play KK music on your island. But our goal is 5-star Island rating and that’s what we are going to focus on.

What Will It Take To Get a 5-Star Island Rating in Animal Crossing: New Horizons?

The game uses an Island Evaluation system, managed by Isabelle at Resident Services, which scores your island from one to five stars. The rating is based on two main criteria – Development and Scenery. Development involves infrastructure, buildings, and non-crafted furniture, while Scenery focuses on natural flora and crafted furniture.

Begin by removing all trees, furniture, and bushes, except paths and buried items. Terraformed land doesn’t seem to affect the rating. An almost empty island can still have a star rating due to existing infrastructure like bridges, villager plots, and key buildings.

Decorating with Strategy

A balance between furniture, flowers, trees, and fencing is key. It’s important to spread these elements evenly across the island. Variety in trees and flowers seems to be crucial.

Adding bridges, inclines, and a variety of bought and DIY furniture can significantly impact your Development score.

Regularly checking in with Isabelle provides insights into what your island needs. Her advice can vary, so it’s essential to adapt your strategy accordingly.

The Finer Details

  • Weeds and Loose Items: Keeping the island clean and free from loose items is important. While naturally occurring items like branches don’t count negatively, excessive dropped items like wood or iron can impact your score.
  • Avoiding Clutter: Overcrowding areas with furniture or other items can lead to a ‘cluttered’ classification, so it’s crucial to space things out evenly.

The island is divided into 8×8 grids, with each grid contributing points based on development and scenery. You need at least 665 points in Development and 450 in Scenery to achieve a 5-star rating.

Upon achieving a 5-star rating, players receive a recipe for a Golden Watering Can and the opportunity for Lily of the Valley flowers to bloom. It’s important to maintain the balance even after reaching 5 stars, as the rating can fluctuate with changes to the island.

How Better Placement of Outdoor Items Help

You can place decorative items and furniture around your house, which enables you to increase your star rating as it counts as beautifying your island. If you need to craft new items, then you can do this through various ways such as DIY workbenches, presents tied to a balloon, recipe from bottles washed up on the beach, or from presents given by other islanders.

Recipes can also be bought from the Nook Stop in the section Redeem Nook Miles. These will have considerably bigger effects on your island’s state. Things that you have previously bought by Nook Shopping can also be purchased again. But do remember that items are always delivered the next day through the mail and you can only have five deliveries at a time.

Make use of as many items as possible when you are shaping the exterior of your island. It will help you improve your island rating increasingly.

Fencing Dos And Don’ts

Once you have unlocked fencing in New Horizons, you must put it to use upon your island. Through fencing, you can add flower gardens and many more details to the villagers’ homes. It is not strictly required to complete the fencing, however, it should be included in the overall outlook of the island to upgrade your ratings.

best way to install a fence in Animal Crossing New Horizons.


  1. Integrate Fences into Your Overall Design: Fences should complement your island’s theme and layout. Use them to create distinct areas, like gardens, parks, or outdoor cafes, enhancing the overall look and feel of your island.
  2. Use a Variety of Fences: Different styles of fences can add depth and character. Mixing and matching fence types can create visually appealing areas that stand out and add to your Development score​​​​.
  3. Consider Practicality and Accessibility: While designing, ensure that fences do not obstruct the movement of villagers and players. They should serve a practical purpose, like enclosing a garden or demarcating a residential area.
  4. Use Fences to Boost Development Score: Strategically placing fences can significantly boost your Development score. Each fence piece contributes to your overall score, so incorporating them thoughtfully around your island can be beneficial​​​​.


  1. Over-Clutter with Fences: Avoid using fences excessively in a small area. Over-cluttering can lead to a negative assessment from Isabelle, as it disrupts the aesthetic flow of your island​​.


When you have obtained the designer app, you should start painting the roads and unlocking different sorts of terrain by the Nook Stop. After that, you can upgrade to cliff creating.

You can also work on water scaping and terrain manipulation. Just think creatively and put in as much careful detailing and good infrastructure on your island as you can.


Planting vegetation Is a key aspect of beautifying your island. Purchase seeds and saplings from Nook’s Cranny and water your flowers. When you have planted different colors beside each other, you can crossbreed the plants and create new colors. The flowers that have been already watered will be indicated by sparkles. Your villagers will also assist you in watering the flowers.

But do note that your island will have a specific range of plants, so you will need to use the Nook Miles Tickets which can be bought for the price of 2,000 Niles from the Nook Stop. This will enable you to search for a larger range of flowers on islands other than yours. Otherwise, you can also trade for the plants with your Animal Crossing partners.

Cleaning Weeds

Picking up and cleaning the weeds that you find on your island will increase your island’s environment rating. Earlier in the game, you can also sell the weeds to make some money.


Visitors that come to your island are a blessing as they can give you feedback about your island. This will allow you to get increased publicity. Try to have as many animals visit your campsite as possible. Amiibo or amibo cards can also be used for inviting special series’ regulars. Or you might need for new visitors to come to your island. When someone wants to visit your island, Isabelle will send you a notification through the briefing.

Upgrading Businesses and Facilities

When you upgrade the facilities and businesses in your village, they will become bigger and more efficient. This will help you island to have a more developed status. Expand and upgrade your facilities, houses, and shops to upgrade the island’s overall environment.

Getting more Business

To have more business on your island, make sure to interact with the travelling tradesmen that visit your island. Be friends with them, chat and purchase their ware. This will help in building up a better reputation for you and your island and might eventually persuade businessmen to start up their shop on your island.

Ask Isabelle

Isabelle will help you immensely if you ask her for tips on improving the island. She will inform you of how she wants to see the island’s environment which you can use as a guideline for working upon the details of the whole area.

My Recommended Island Design

my Island design suggestion.

This is how you can get a better island rating in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. If you are interested in learning more about the game then you can check out our guide on how to build a museum. For more content, be sure to check out our Animal Crossing New Horizons guides hub.

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Hey there! I'm Jake, and for the past eight years, I've been diving deep into journalism and whipping up video game guides. Big-time Pokemon fanatic? That's me. Obsessed with RPGs? Guilty as charged. When I'm not jotting down the latest game tips or hunting for that elusive Pokemon, I'm geeking out with fellow gamers and sharing my latest adventures; 2500+ articles and still going! Dive into my world and let's game on!

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