Which smug villagers are worth your time?
Though one of the new types of personalities, smug villagers in Animal Crossing are perhaps one of the most diverse and well-defined group of villagers in the game. Their ‘holier than thou’ attitude is only surface level, as their personalities make them very agreeable and affectionate overall. Their designs are also some of the best in the game; though a few of them do venture into oddball territory that falls incredibly flat.
For me though, smug villagers are almost a must have for any village in Animal Crossing. With New Horizons out now, why not look at some of the designs and personalities found in this crop of villagers, both the good and the bad. Here are the five best and worst smug villagers in Animal Crossing: New Horizons.
Worst Smug Villager: Eugene
Koalas in Animal Crossing are not the strongest animal type in the game. For me personally, there are very few noteworthy koalas to even talk about both positively and negatively. Eugene, however, is one of those exceptions, and for me fits in the latter category.
Eugene defines ‘smug’ with his look. The black shades, greaser jacket, sideburns, and wry smile certainly make him stand out compared to other villagers. The thing is, Eugene just comes across as a wannabe Elvis; he is posing for the cool style over anything else.
It is not just a sour impression ultimately that sinks Eugene. It certainly does not help that he is more aggressive than most smug villagers. He often comes across as conceited and flaunts the ladies’ man card hard, trying to craft love songs for female villagers or the player. In one respect that may seem affectionate, but from an outsider looking in, Eugene has almost a stalkerish-vibe whenever he woos another animal.
Best Smug Villager: O’Hare
Ah the Irish bunny. O’Hare is an Animal Crossing original, being one of a handful of villagers found in the first American release of the game so long as you have a Game Boy Advance. See, the first Animal Crossing had cross-play with the Advance, which allowed the player to travel to their own private tropical island. There, a single villager and other supplies would be found, including the elusive coconut trees.
O’Hare was one of several villagers out of that crop of islanders who would survive the modern games. Today, he is given the smug personality—first bestowed upon him in New Leaf—and has been better for it. What makes O’Hare stand out is mostly his theme and design; he is unapologetically a reference to several different sources. Some say he is an incarnation of Peppy from StarFox. Others point to his name being a reference to O’Hare International Airport. Realistically, it is just a little flair to make O’Hare, like all islander villagers back in the day, stand out more.
Regardless of the origins, O’Hare has been a staple villager for nearly 20 years, and his design as a character has always been simple but eye catching. With his Hawaiian shirt and straw hat, concealing a tuft of blonde hair across his brown skin, O’Hare is not the cutest rabbit in the game by any means. He is, however, more realistic for his appearances compared to some of the more outlandish rabbits found, which sometimes goes a long way in Animal Crossing to stand out among the oddball colored animals that populate the world.
Worst Smug Villager: Pietro
I am just going to come out with it, I hate clowns. Clowns are rarely funny, always creepy looking, and constantly obnoxious to me. The red nose is very well a ‘punch me’ sign; clowns suck, and the less we see them in games, the better.
Then, you got Pietro…ugh.
OK, it is not Pietro’s fault he is designed to look like a clown, it's really Nintendo’s fault for that. The thing is, Pietro is just obnoxiously loud and ridiculous looking as a villager that what makes him stand out is what makes me want to kick him off of my island. Hell, I think Nintendo agreed with that, since Pietro was one of the few villagers to get a whole redesign for New Horizons.
His new look is an improvement… slightly, but it still does not change the fact that you got a smug clown sheep in the game. Pietro is often maligned as a poster boy for bad design; trust me there are worse out there in Animal Crossing. Still, it’s not hard to look at his dead eyes and soulless smile, and not help to smack him in his nose with a net.
Best Smug Villager: Raymond
Raymond is one of the brand-new villagers in New Horizons, and arguably the most popular animal in the game right now. The smug cat has become an instant fan favorite thanks to his casual business attire, and the unique trait of having heterochromia iridium; or two different colored eyes.
All of this makes Raymond stand out, but apparently his attitude as a smug villager is also agreeable as well. Raymond is less condescending than other smug villagers, constantly flirts with the player, and is polite with other villagers as well. This makes Raymond a good fit for any island in New Horizons… if you can find him.
Since Raymond is a new character, this means acquiring him is incredibly difficult, as no Amiibo card is available to guarantee he visits your island. Raymond is so popular that on websites where people trade villagers for bells or Nook Mile Tickets, he tends to go for the highest prices to ‘purchase’ him for your island. This oddball form of trading aside, it just shows you how popular Raymond really is; the most expensive friend to have in the game at this time, as deemed by the Animal Crossing community.
Worst Smug Villager: Hippeux
Hippos in Animal Crossing are odd ducks. On the one hand they are a more uncommon species type for villagers, which makes finding them somewhat rewarding. On the other hand, all of them have the same problem as koalas in not really being noteworthy with a few exceptions. Hippos like Bubbles or Rocco come to mind as good examples of the species. Hippos like Hippeux, however… are the bottom of the barrel.
Hippeux looks like a prep school reject through and through. Sporting a flashy blazer with puke green skin tones is eye catching, in a very rough kind of way for sure. Hippeux also has a weird tuft of hair at the top of his head that really messes with the design. I get it is supposed to showcase hair that is cropped and clean, but for me, hair on the villagers in Animal Crossing rarely works when it resembles real-life styles too much, and only really gets a pass if the species naturally has tons of hair to begin with.
The worst part about Hippeux is his name. It is literally a faux French version of his species. Now that is some smug behavior there. The most ironic thing though is that apparently, Hippeux is not his real name. Those who play the phone game Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, can have Hippeux confess that his real name is Gary.
Gary…the Hippo. So he’s pretentious and a liar. Not good traits for a villager at all.
Best Smug Villager: Lopez
One of the best new additions to Animal Crossing is the Deer species of villagers. Many of the deer we see are elegant looking and dynamic, and with few exceptions all have stand out designs. One of my personal favorites however is Lopez, the smug Antelope.
Yes, I said that right, Antelope. Animal Crossing has a habit of sticking rare and exotic animals in with certain species types. In this case, while Lopez is in the deer category, his design clearly represents an Antelope or a Gazelle most closely, right down to his skin color and horn placement. Though it is close to real life, it helps Lopez stand out more with a unique design that the other deer cannot replicate.
Like most smug villagers, Lopez is kind but full of himself. Unlike most smug villagers, he rarely flirts with the other player, and apparently only seems to do so when they are female. These minor tweaks to the typical smug behavior are kind of interesting, and I would hope Nintendo does that more often with the general personalities in future games. As it stands, Lopez is one of a kind, and part of that uniqueness makes him an eye-catching and cool design.
Worst Smug Villager: Olaf
I have noticed a pattern when it comes to smug villagers. The more preppy or outlandish they are, the more obnoxious their designs become. Take Olaf, for example. Visually he is not horrible; a dark brown anteater is a nice change of pace from the somewhat colorful anteaters we have had in the past. Olaf kind of falls into the same trap as Eugene though, in him being a knock-off character. In this case, a Spanish bullfighter.
OK, some people say he is more like Michael Jackson. To me though, the look seems to point away from the King of Pop more than anything else. The greasy, curly hair that dangles across his face, the darker, tannish skin, the movements we see of Olaf, it all points to bullfighting than moonwalking.
That all said… why? Again, unique designs are a cool trait in Animal Crossing, but Olaf is the poster boy for smug here. He just oozes the more negative traits you find in smug villagers visually. It also does not help that his character is off-putting when you talk to him. Olaf is frankly too smug for his own good, and for a group of personalities where that is their gimmick, that is saying something!
Best Smug Villager: Julian
Julian is fabulous! No, really, he is. There is no hidden context to his speech or words, he is always super bubbly, friendly, and fashion-focused when you speak to him. I am not trying to imply any form of sexuality for characters in a kid’s game, but if the villagers thought of such things, I think it would be clear which team Julian plays for.
It really boils down to his personality almost being atypical of other smug villagers. Julian rarely acts conceited, except when talking about innocuous things like internet followers or fashion. He is always friendly and always flirting, regardless of the player's gender. In fact, a lot of Julian’s personality fits in better with the more maligned Snooty personality over anything else. This certainly makes him more unique on that side of the coin.
That is part of what makes him stand out, and why he is one of the best designed villagers in the game. The other part is he is a unicorn. I mean, its obvious with the horn, of course, but his flowing mane of hair, all but hiding the mascara he has for his eyes, complements him so well. It is a case of nailing the design and the personality completely, and this allows Julian to not only stand out among the horses in Animal Crossing but also as one of the best-designed villagers too.
Worst Smug Villager: Rodney
I hate hamsters. No really. They are without a doubt the worst animal species in Animal Crossing. Every single hamster in the game is ugly. I cannot even pick a favorite out of them; every single one of those chubby little monsters has some quirk or design flaw or bit of personality that is a massive turn-off to me.
But if one hamster must take the cake for bad design, it is Rodney. The sad, dreary eyes, the sickly blue skin, the hot pink hair…Rodney looks like a pudgy teenager who hasn’t gotten over being lonely on Friday nights; a sad sack of an animal that wishes to draw attention to itself out of pity over respect.
Speculating on a fictional creature’s self-esteem aside, Rodney is just the quintessential ugly character. He does not really come across as smug that much, there is little ‘gentleman-like’ when it comes to Rodney. If anything, he resembles and acts like a spoiled prep school geek. Rodney is just bad design. Bad even by the incredibly low standards of hamster characters, and I'd argue the worst smug villager in the game.
Best Smug Villager: Marshal
When Marshal debuted in New Leaf, he instantly became a fan favorite. What is not to like about a white, fluffy squirrel with sad, angry eyes? Marshal’s visual is simple, but perfect. What sells him ultimately is his eyes with a direct contrast to his rosy cheeks or near wry-looking mouth. His extra tuft of hair is also a nice touch, giving him again a bit of edge to the character that helps match the eye design.
Marshal, until the rise of Raymond, was the most popular male villager in Animal Crossing. Much like Raymond, Marshal is highly collectible, with his own price in the marketplace matching Raymond at tons of bells or mile tickets. Unlike Raymond, Marshal has an Amiibo card, and it is one of the most expensive cards to find out there, with folks shelling out hundreds of real-world dollars to grab it.
Let me repeat that, hundreds of real-world dollars. That is a testament to how sought-after Marshal is, and how well received his design has become. I have to agree with the masses on this one, Marshal is, without a doubt the best-designed smug villager in the game.
So, there you have it, the five best and worst smug villagers in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Did we pick one of your favorites? Did we leave out someone else worthy on this list? Let us know below.