How to detect balloons in Animal Crossing?

Jul 14, 2023 par Skyangie

In Animal Crossing: New Horizons, it's very important to keep your eyes and ears open, or you'll miss out on some surprises! In this guide about balloons, we'll explain how to detect them, how to drop them and what type of object they contain. 

Comment détecter les ballons-cadeaux dans Animal Crossing

Balloons can hold many types of object, including furniture, bells, resources, clothing and even a DIY recipes.  

1. Be equipped with a slingshot

First, you'll need a slingshot to shoot the balloons in the sky. To obtain the DIY recipes for the slingshot, talk to Timmy to buy a slingshot or the DIY recipes to make your own. 
To make a slingshot, you'll need the DIY recipes and 5 hardwoods, which you can find by hitting trees with a Flimsy axe, stone axe or axe.
* It's important to know that hitting a tree with a HACHE will fell the tree, unlike the Flimsy axe and stone axe. 

2. Keep your eyes and ears open!

Listen and look to the sky. Balloons fly overhead quite frequently. The appearance of a balloon will always be announced by a little whistle, like the sound of a gust of air. The sound is slightly different from that of the wind. 

3. Position yourself and shoot the balloon

When you hear the little whistle that indicates the presence of a balloon, stand under the balloon and shoot it with your slingshot. 

Tip: Be sure to drop the balloon in an area free of obstacles (weeds, flowers, rocks). Otherwise, the gift will disappear before your very eyes. Fortunately (see photo above), there was a space to receive the gift despite the many flowers present. 

Balloon color 

There are 4 different balloon colors: blue, yellow, red and green. However, the color of the balloon can also change during a certain event, such as Bunny Day, when the balloon is a pastel color and will certainly give an object linked to the event.

For the moment, there's no confirmation that the color of the balloon (blue, yellow, red and green) is a clue to what it contains as an object. However, it seems that certain balloon colors increase the chances of receiving a particular object category. 

  • Blue balloons seem more likely to contain resources (iron nuggets, gold nuggets and clay nuggets).
  • Yellow balloons are more likely to contain bells. 
  • Red balloons seem more likely to contain DIY recipes or seasonal DIY recipes. 
  • Green balloons seem more likely to contain clothes. 

* Furniture appears to be available in a variety of balloon colors. 

When do balloons appear?

It seems that balloons can appear at any time ending in 0 or 5 every 10 minutes or so. Remember to keep an eye on the clock from time to time, as this may indicate that a gift balloon is about to appear.

The direction of the balloons seems to change twice a day. If the balloons appear from right to left in the morning (5 a.m. to 6 p.m.), they will appear from left to right at night (6 p.m. to 5 a.m.) and vice versa.

What's more, the balloons always come from the beach, slowly making their way to your island, only to head back to the beach on the opposite side if they aren't caught by your slingshot. 

Additional tips

  • Be careful not to drop a balloon into the water! Once dropped in the water, the gift disappears before your very eyes... However, this can unlock a Miles Nook quest if it's the first time this has happened to you. 
  • Make sure you drop the balloon in a space free of obstacles (weeds, flowers, rocks). Otherwise, the gift will also disappear before your very eyes.
  • The slingshot will break after 20 uses. Be sure to keep a spare slingshot or make a new one as soon as possible, so you don't miss out on any gift balloons.
  • Don't forget to turn up the volume or play with headphones so you don't miss out on the balloons.
  • Be careful not to enter a house or building when you hear the whistling sound that indicates the presence of a balloon. By the time you leave the building, the whistle will have disappeared. 
  • To determine the direction of the balloons, simply look at the direction of the rocket coming out of the chimneys on the villagers' houses. 
  • You can also use your camera to get a better view of the sky if you hear a whistle, but can't see the balloon. 
  • Dropping multiple balloons can unlock Miles Nook quests (after dropping 5, 20, 50, 100, 300 balloons).

* When you drop the 300th balloon, a golden balloon will appear with the DIY recipes for the golden shovel! 

And that's it! Now you know all about the gifts hanging from balloons that pass over your head in Animal Crossing. You'll never miss the rewards in the sky again!