Ridiculous Fishing - A Tale of Redemption
Fishing isn't exactly the wackiest sport. Tag it as Ridiculous Fishing, though, and suddenly everybody expects a certain level of, oh, ridiculousness. From Super Crate Box creator Vlambeer along with Greg Wohlwend of Mikengreg and Zach Gage of SpellTower fame, Ridiculous Fishing is a wholly upgraded version of the browser game Radical Fishing released in 2011. The premise? Fishing taken to a ridiculous level.
Ridiculous Fishing takes place in three phases: drop/avoid, reel in/catch, and shoot everything with a gun. Sitting comfortably in your polygon boat, simply tap the screen to drop the lure into the water. As it sinks, tilt your device to avoid fish so you can continue to dive. The deeper you get the rarer and more valuable the fish become. If you run into a little piscis it will nab the line, initiating phase two of Ridiculous Fishing: actual fishing! You automatically start reeling in at this point, but now you tilt the device to run into fish, gathering as many as you can on your way to the surface.
Here's where things get ridiculous. The minute your haul reaches the top of the water, the fish fly into the air. Then you pull out a gun and start shooting them. Tap or drag the screen to blast away, working those bullets to cut the gills off of everything you dragged up from below. Some fish fly higher than others, and some are tougher to obliterate. Either way, you're shooting fish, and it's 15 seconds of absolute mayhem.
The less ridiculous but more addictive part of Ridiculous Fishing gathers your earned cash and sends you to the upgrades shop. There, you can purchase longer lines, better guns, unique tech pieces that give your lure a fighting chance, and maybe a spiffy hat or two. You need to upgrade equipment in order to reach deeper parts of the water and to survive some of the more aggressive creatures and environments out there.
Analysis: Ridiculous Fishing is the perfect formula of gather, upgrade, gather, repeat. Not only does it keep you hooked (you knew there'd be a fishing pun somewhere, didn't you?) from moment to moment, but the variety of upgrades serves as incentive to keep you interested in the long term. Moving on to new fishin' holes is a simple matter of nabbing a certain number of unique fish species, giving you yet another goal to aim for as you quest for total fishing domination.
Along with the actual gameplay, Ridiculous Fishing includes a few just-for-fun extras that are pretty entertaining. Byrdr is the best, serving as an in-game Twitter-like experience where characters react to events and talk back and forth using short messages. It's always great to see that little wooden tablet shake with unread content. The Fish-O-Pedia is also packed with humor, describing each critter you catch like a Pokedex written by Jack Handey.
The process of repeating the same basic actions can get a little stale if you sit with the game for hours on end, but that just means it's time to take a break and come back in half an hour when you're ready to fish again. The loading screens seem a bit frequent, but they're short and don't cause too much trouble.
It doesn't matter if you love or hate fishing, love or hate things that are ridiculous, Ridiculous Fishing is the kind of game you'll enjoy. The kind of game everyone will enjoy.
NOTE: This game was played and reviewed on the iPad 3. Game was available in the North American market at the time of publication, but may not be available in other territories. Please see individual app market pages for purchasing info.