As a fan, player, observer and casual researcher, it is pleasing to see that there is a small but regular flow of research articles and papers concerning the game franchise Animal Crossing. Here’s fice such publications, with links to open and free full PDF versions for each.
2015. Animal crossing: New leaf and the diversity of horror in video games. By Ashley Brown and Björn Berg Marklund. [PDF]
2008. The Rhetoric of Video Games. By Ian Bogost. [PDF]
2007. Touching is good: an eidetic phenomenology of interface, interobjectivity, and interaction in Nintendo’s Animal Crossing: Wild World. By BG Behrenshausen. [PDF]
2005. Constructing a Player-Centred Deﬁnition of Fun for Video Games Design. By Stephen Boyd Davis and Christina Carini. [PDF]