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Animal Crossing hackers are hanging star fragments on trees like Christmas ornaments

(Image credit: Nintendo / PeachyIsle on Twitter)

Unsatisfied with merely fueling the Animal Crossing: New Horizons magic wand (opens in new tab), hackers have found a new use for star fragments: decorating trees.

As Polygon (opens in new tab) spotted, hacked star trees have become more and more common in the past few days, with many users sharing screenshots and videos of their starry orchards on Reddit and Twitter (opens in new tab). Star fragments are ordinarily gained by wishing on shooting stars in order to spawn fragments on beaches, but hackers have found a way to put them - among other items, like fossils and snowflakes - on trees. 

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Hacked or not, these trees really do look great. It's no wonder some people are willing to pay upwards of 200 Nook Miles Tickets for a batch of them, or even real money in some cases (which we obviously don't recommend). Players have used them to create ethereal, fairy-like dreamscapes which, while technically possible in the vanilla game, really benefit from the addition of star fragment flora. 

You won't find listings for hacked star trees on resources like Nookazon (opens in new tab), the eBay-inspired merchant forum for New Horizons. Instead, several players say they've been able to acquire them through Discord communities which include members with cracked consoles. As is always the case with stuff like this, importing hacked items may affect your island or save file (though no one's reported major issues with the trees from what I've seen), and there's every chance that future updates will break the trees or turn them back to normal. If you plan on getting some for yourself, be cautious and realistic about doing so.

We'd love to see star trees officially added to the game, along with basically all of the quality of life fixes in this fake Nintendo Direct (opens in new tab).

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.