At the beginning of each game in the Animal Crossing series, the player will move into a town or village where the game takes place. The first person to load the game is given the task of naming the town, and this cannot be changed after creation, until they rebuild the town.
The landscape of each town varies and it is very unlikely that two towns will be the same. It is surrounded on three sides by high cliffs, while the other edge is a beach, bordering on the sea. This is changed in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, where the beach takes up two of the town's sides, while the top of the town has railway tracks and Main Street. A waterfall marks the entrance of a river to the town, which makes its way towards the sea. The river will sometimes branch off in a two-pronged fork (Animal Crossing: Wild World and Animal Crossing: City Folk only), creating an islet in the village. One can cross the river using bridges. The town is home to a variety of flora; many types of trees and flowers grow there, and in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, bushes and bamboo can even be grown.
In this town, there are many buildings, most of which are the homes of the villagers. There are also shops, such as Tom Nook's store (Nooklings in New Leaf, but this is relocated to Main Street) and the Able Sisters. Other buildings include the post office or town hall and the police station or town gate.
In Animal Crossing there is a train station, which is where the player first arrives in the town and travels to friends' towns. In Animal Crossing: City Folk there is a bus stop, which the player can use to take the bus to the city. In Animal Crossing: New Leaf, the train station separates the land that holds the village and Main Street, with the same use as in Animal Crossing.