Animal Crossing: New Horizons is a game all about appreciating the progressing of time. You witness the months go by, you see changes in the week, you even witness the changing of time as things close and people go to sleep. It’s also a game that rewards you for taking your time.
While there is a run button, unless you’re in a specific hurry and tight on time, don’t touch it. Instead, take a moment and look for things around you.
First off, running scares away rare bugs and fish. If you walk slowly, you’ll find rare moths and beetles on the sides of tree trunks that you can catch. You’ll find walking leaf insects on the ground by trees and beetles on stumps. You’ll see more fish as your stomping hasn’t chased them away either. Likewise, during the day, if you’re running you might not stop in time to see a scorpion, likewise a tarantula at night and suddenly find yourself going from being in a rush to being in a chase.
You can also watch for changes in your villager’s behavior as you walk around town and observe. For example, you might see them occasionally twitch and/or look sad. Look closer, there’s a flea hoping around on them. Hit them with your net and you caught yourself a bug and that villager’s adoration.
If they have a thought bubble over their head it’s usually a sign they want to give you a gift or have something they need to get off their chest. Likewise, if they run up to you and are able to catch up.
If they look angry, red in the face and have little clouds coming off them as they stomp around, chances are a different villager ticked them off. Talk to them multiple times and eventually they’ll explain the situation and calm down. It’s a really easy way to build your relationship with them.
Finally, if you see two villagers talking, join in. A lot of times you’ll actually get to witness a conversation between two NPCs and it’s somewhat fascinating.
Oh, and as a fun side thing, place a radio near the plaza with a song in it. Sometimes villagers will approach it and start singing along which is never not adorable.