Some of our favorite video game moments came from playing Sega's Bass and Marine Fishing for the Dreamcast, furiously working the rod/reel peripheral to land a whopper. While those days are long gone, at least we can sort of recreate them on the iPhone with Gameloft's upcoming App, Fishing Kings. While nothing beats having a rod in one's hand (that sounds all sorts of wrong), using a touch screen is surprisingly addictive.
According to Gameloft, Fishing Kings was designed with the hardcore enthusiast in mind. Although it's still a bit early to tell whether the company delivered on that statement, this impressive looking 3-D game has five locations (including the Bahamas), 15 spots and over 30 different species of fish. In addition, various lures have an effect on your fishing ability; you can actually fill a tackle box with different things.
On the surface, the game reminds us of Sega's fishing games, as you begin on the boat (with the camera fixed behind your angler) and then transition to an underwater view, where you watch the lure zip through the water past scores of hungry fish. The only difference is how you control the action. Instead of physically turning a reel, you make circular motions over the on-screen controller, carefully jerking the iPhone to hook a fish. That's easier said than done, since it's easy to overdo it and snap the line, indicated by an onscreen tension meter.
While the game's no cakewalk, it is extremely enjoyable and satisfying once you catch something. It's also quite attractive, with a varied mix of different environments (both topside and underwater), the setting sun and different fish animations.
Even better, Fishing Kings is set to debut sometime this month, so it won't be long before everyone can indulge in this fun hobby without waking up at 5:00AM and attaching slimy worms to a hook. We'll post a review as soon as Gameloft announces the App's release.