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I've been playing on this world for a few days in AC:NL on the physical copy of the game. I recently bought the digital copy, is there anyway I can transfer the physical data to the digital one? Can I still have the same map and character?

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Yes, it is possible to transfer data from cartridges to an SD card in your 3DS/2DS or New 3DS. All you need for that is the Save Data Transfer Tool, which you can find on the eShop.

QR Code for Save Data Transfer Tool
To scan the QR code, open the eShop, then click on the menu button in the top left, and select the second item called "Redeem download code" or similar, then click on "Scan QR code". If you have difficulties scanning the QR code, try zooming in with your browser (Ctrl + Mouse wheel).


Here are a few things you need to keep in mind before using the Save Data Transfer Tool:

  • Your console needs to be connected to the internet.
  • You can transfer data from a cartridge, but not back to it.
  • The data is transferred, not copied. Your cartridge will be wiped after the transfer (the game is still there, but your saves will be gone).
  • Any save data belonging to the digital copy will be overwritten.
  • Because of the above, make sure you don't remove the cartridge or the SD card while the transfer is in progress. Also, do not turn off your console!
  • The Save Data Transfer Tool is not compatible with every game. Make sure to have a look at the list of unsupported software before you decide to buy a digital copy for a game you own physically. Since Animal Crossing: New Leaf isn't featured in the list, you should be safe.
  • To transfer your saves, the cartridge must be inserted (obviously), and the digital copy must be downloaded. You can't transfer your data before downloading the digital copy first. You do not need to launch the digital copy first, though.

For the record, I have used the Save Data Transfer Tool successfully with the following titles:

  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D
  • The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
  • Fire Emblem Awakening
  • Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D

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