Ah fishing, a great past time, well-loved sport and rather affluent type of video game. Because while you can't always go out on a lake and fish, video games can be there to hold you over until fishing season rolls around again. With Let's Fish! Hooked On, it's clear that Sims were attempting to emulate the success of SEGA's classic fishing title, Bass Fishing, but sadly it ends up being one of those less than stellar fishing titles that shouldn't be celebrated.
Let's Fish starts with an extremely vague tutorial that makes the rest of the game incredibly difficult to grasp. Before starting, you select a character with a list of skills. These skills are never explained and how they can help you in the main game is unknown. So many questions will run through your head while playing, such as what lure should be picked over another, and why is movement so constricted? You will never receive any answers.
Basically if you want to play the game you pick any random lure, cast it with circle where you see a bunch of fish, and then hold circle, square, or triangle to lure in the line a bit. If you do manage you hook a fish after a varied amount of time, then you need to follow the left analog in the direction that is indicated on screen. And that's it; there is really nothing else to it. It's safe to say that the gameplay feels extremely old after half an hour, and should only be played in short periods.
Content wise, Let's Fish suffers greatly as it feels incredible barren. You can pick from World Tour, Challenge, and Training mode. There isn't much a difference between each one besides the rewards you get for succeeding. Completing challenges eventually unlocks more areas to fish in and wining skill points in World Tour allows you to upgrade your character, but that's about it.
Movement is extremely restricted as you can barely control where to cast off. You are forced to cast towards the shore, into many obstructions. The game could have benefitted from an option to use the right stick to move the boat that your character is on from all sides. How it's implemented means that you can only move from right to left, never being able to cast anywhere behind you. It just really takes you out of a game when the movement is locked like this.
The fish seem extremely inattentive and you'll often at times find yourself staring out at the water waiting for one to bite. If you find an area of water with activity this doesn't always mean that the fish will be easy to catch, as they are just too brainless to even pay attention to the lure. Fish will often swim right through the line like it's not even there.
Visually you'll find that the game is nothing to be excited about. The water may seem atmospheric, but it is quickly put down by the terrible frame-rate and the ugly art direction that was used. Characters' appearances clash with the otherwise sharp looking environment, as they look messy and unsettling. Sound wise it's just a bunch of boring guitar-based tracks that will make you want to turn the sound down for good. The characters will occasionally bark out a few lines during gameplay and these just seem so random and unnecessary that it makes you wonder why the creators even tried to give them voices in the first place.
All in all there is really nothing memorable about Let's Fish and at times it doesn't even feel like a full game. It would have faired better as a mini game in a much bigger title that focused on sports in general. If you are looking for a fishing title for any reason, do not look towards this game to satisfy your need for one.
|» Concept is interesting at first.|
|» The visuals don't always look bad.|
|» Utilizes touch screen controls effectively.|
|» Characters that clash with the environment.|
|» Tutorial really doesn't help at all.|
|» Very shallow gameplay, featuring restricted movement.|