His complacent eyes and self-satisfied smirk—-if you already can’t tell from his expression, this is one Smug deer.
Talk to him and you’ll find out that his wit is as sharp as his horns! He’s definitely proud of the languages he can speak (or at least attempt). Meet Zell in his very own Zell Animal Crossing villager guide.
Who is Zell in Animal Crossing: New Horizons?
Zell is a Smug deer villager who was added to the Animal Crossing games when New Leaf was released.
He joined the series back in 2012 (2013 for the English localization) and continued to appear in subsequent games. He once again joined the Smug roster for Animal Crossing: New Horizons.
Although he’s a deer villager, his English name seems to come from the word gazelle. Gazelles and deer are not related at all.
Quick science lesson: Deers are categorized under the Cervidae family and are related to moose, elk, and reindeer. Gazelles are in the family Bovidae, which includes antelopes, goats, and sheep.
Still, his English name suits him very much and goes well with his style. Meanwhile, in the original Japanese release, his name is Nelson.
He may be categorized as a deer villager and may have a gazelle-sounding name, but Zell actually looks similar to an antelope in real life!
Zell has a dark brown coat with white markings on his face, particularly around his eyes and snout.
He also has a spiraling set of horns. If you look at pictures of blackbuck antelopes, the details are very similar.
Like the dark brown and white coat on his face, his white hooves contrast his body’s dark brown hair. To continue this contrasting theme, one of his ears is white, while the other is dark brown.
Zell sports a black Gilet and Shirt outfit. To avoid the rain while strolling outside, he has a Camo Umbrella to protect him. If he needs a bag for shopping, he brings out his carrot-themed Veggie-Print bag.
Zell has definitely leveled up his looks, because in New Leaf he was just wearing an Arctic-Camo Tee, and had a Zebra Umbrella with him during rainy days.
Zell says “pronk” to end his sentences. To “pronk” is to leap with your back arched and (four) legs all stiffened and used to push yourself off the ground.
You typically see this done by deer, antelope, and other related animals. In Japanese, he says “tashikani”, it’s a phrase used to express a level of certainty.
Both sound like it fits Zell’s theme. Pronk away with certainty, Zell!
One look and you can immediately tell he’s one of the Smug villagers in the game.
You’ll see Zell interact with his neighbors about his latest escapades, and will try to impress people with the languages he knows.
Smug villagers can rub their neighbors the wrong way due to their arrogance and flirtiness, hence they might get into small arguments with Snooty and Cranky villagers.
Peppy neighbors enjoy their conversations, however, because of their shared interests.
They are still a delight to have due to their “can-do” attitude. They are definitely nice and gracious to the player in their own way.
His house’s aesthetics definitely reflect Zell’s looks and personality. It screams Zell, and you bet it looks pretty cool!
The exterior roof and walls have his colors, with a Light-Gray Stone Roof, Brown Clay Exterior, and a White Wooden Door. Step inside to see a room perfect for late-night chilling.
There’s a fancy black Grand Piano and a Phonograph to serenade visitors with K.K. Swing. To unwind, Zell plays a game or two of billiards with his Billiard Table.
Have a candlelit dinner on his Rattan Armchair and Rattan Table.
The ambiance of his place is enhanced by his Cityscape Wall and Monochromatic Tile Flooring. Nice place you got here, Zell!
He’s regarded as a fairly popular Smug villager in a lot of Animal Crossing communities and tier lists due to his cool looks, notable features, and nice house.
How To Get Zell in Animal Crossing?
You can get Zell through Mystery Islands, Campsite, inviting someone else’s Zell, or scanning his Amiibo card.
For Mystery Islands, the game picks species first and then personality when rolling for villagers you meet during tours.
There are 12 deer in New Horizons, two of them Smug. Zell doesn’t seem too hard to roll for, but it’s best to prepare enough tickets if you really want to get him.
Don’t wanna spend tickets? Wait for him to show up at your Campsite. Your Campsite will invite the personality you don’t have on your island, but since there are 37 Smug villagers you might wait quite a while.
For the fastest way to get him, try the Amiibo card method! Simply scan the card on your Nintendo Switch and then invite Zell to your island.
What You Need To Get Zell
Giving gifts to your villagers can increase your friendship level with them. You get more points if you give them a wrapped gift on their birthday, and they even give you something back!
For Zell, he celebrates his birthday on June 7th. He’s fond of clothing in Cool and Gorgeous styles, while his favorite colors are purple and gray.
How about giving him a gray Waistcoat and purple Steampunk Hat as gifts?
Zell in the DLC
He wants to relax in a fancy hotel room with a Taurus Bathtub and Elegant Bed. Once you make his ideal vacation home, you unlock some Zodiac furniture and items in the Elegant series.
Zell shows his cool self on the cover of K.K. Waltz. He’s dancing with Diana, who is another deer villager. Other characters on the cover are K.K., Goldie, Whitney, and Wolfgang.
And that’s Zell, folks! In summary, he is a deer villager, with a name that sounds like gazelle, but looks like an antelope. Quite a unique character, don’t you think?
More Animal Crossing Villagers Guide
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- Tia Animal Crossing: New Horizons- Villager Guide
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- Lolly Animal Crossing: New Horizons- Personality, Gifts & More
- Zell Animal Crossing: House, Gifts, Personality & More