Maulidan's Fishtopia Tycoon is just so many neat things combined into one. It's a tycoon game! It's an upgrade game! It's an avoidance minigame! It's also a breakfast cereal, a new brand of smart phone, a hip cult religion, and we understand there's a book deal in the works. Alright maybe not, but what it is is a whole lot of fun! You plays as a protagonist with a potentially unhealthy fascination with fish who's not only the sole proprietor of Fish World, a gigantic fish-themed aquatic amusement park, he's also the sole fisherman responsible for going out fishing each day to keep the place supplied with fish. Tourists show up each day to admire the aquarium exhibits, and there are merchant stalls there just in case they'd like to take home a lovely memento of their visit in the form of, say, a live Brown Trout or Tilapia or something. Like ya do. While we're relieved this hasn't caught on yet with the major cartoon-themed amusement parks ("Live mouse and duck in a bag for your small child, sir?"), it's a great model for pet and grocery stores. Catch, breed and sell diverse species of fish and grow your very own tourist attraction!
Fishing means going out to various spots on the map and tossing lures which the game calls Bait. A rapidly-fluctuating meter determines how far out you'll cast, depending on when you click. You'll enter an avoidance minigame, clicking to pull on your rod and temporarily add some buoyancy to the hook. Avoid getting your line caught on rocks, seaweed and the edges of the screen and you'll be able to snag fish! That's when avoiding those hazards gets more difficult as the fishes can add quite a bit of pull, but there are other rods and lures available to make things easier. Get the fish back to you and it's yours! It gets added to your stock, and tourists at Fish World can buy it once you've made it available at the stalls. There are also Monster Fish, which aren't quite as Lovecraftian as they might sound. Catching two or more Monster Fish of a given species will enable you to keep breeding more of them, making for easy sales back at your kiosks. As you play you'll earn money for better equipment, and with the fishing minigame, the diverse species, the in-game quests and the Monster Fish breeding all the time it doesn't feel grindy at all. New areas will unlock as you complete quests, which keeps things interesting, and with a very useful if perhaps imperfectly translated in-game tutorial you can be off and playing just about as soon as the game loads. Maulidan have combined a plethora of different game elements into a cheery, well-crafted, refreshing nature-loving experience that will brighten up your day.