UPDATE 1/9/16 4.10pm Nintendo has finally announced the big Animal Crossing: New Leaf update for Europe - it'll arrive here via a free patch, likely around the start of November.
The update will add amiibo functionality to the game - as reported below - with cards bringing their respective villagers to your town. A new series of 50 cards will launch on 11th November.
It is unknown what Animal Crossing amiibo figures will do, although Nintendo confirmed what we reported earlier: that some figures from other Nintendo series will also be compatible in some way.
From 25th November, all new copies of the game will come with the update pre-installed - and under the new guise of Animal Crossing: New Leaf Welcome amiibo!.
Finally, a special Animal Crossing Nintendo Direct is planned for sometime this autumn, presumably with more word on the update as well as details of the long-promised but still-mysterious Animal Crossing mobile game which Nintendo has cooking.
ORIGINAL STORY 20/7/16 9.10am Nintendo is giving Animal Crossing: New Leaf a new lease of life.
Four years after its original launch on 3DS, the quirky life-sim is getting new content, with amiibo figurine and card support.
Animal Crossing amiibo will now be supported within the game. Cards will prompt their specific villagers to arrive up in your town, although it isn't known what amiibo figures will do.
It also looks like Nintendo's paint-based shooter Splatoon will be getting represented in the game, via new Amiibo figures Callie and Marie.
"What about amiibo from other series?" Nintendo's Japanese site asks, alongside pictures of Splatoon furniture and costumes (thanks to our own John Linneman for the translation). This at least suggests amiibo from other franchises will be used to unlock content in the game.
The update will arrive this autumn. Also due this autumn, Nintendo said back in April, is the Animal Crossing mobile game - which will be free-to-play.
It could be we see another update which will add some form of connectivity between the two.