The story leading up to Ridiculous Fishing‘s release has been as interesting as the game itself. Developer Vlambeer created a Flash prototype called Radical Fishing and another dipshit developer copied it straight up and brought it to the App Store before Vlambeer could. I played the knock-off – which I won’t list by name – and it’s pretty terrible. Vlambeer got their redemption when their title released and, as I’m about to reveal, it was worth the wait.
So you’re a fisherman out alone on the wild seas with a wooden plank for a phone and a dream of fishing, fishing, fishing. With a tap, you cast a line that sinks passes through your local strata where different fish, crabs and other marine life take up residence. You’ll tilt your iDevice as it descends, but take too many hits and you begin you to reel that line back in, at which point your focus is on picking up as many different kinds of fish as possible (and avoiding those damn jellyfish). Once on the surface, they explode into the air and you blow them up. That’s right, with a variety of firearms, you lay to waste all of those fish and cetaceans that just wanted to swim, swim, swim. You progress by scooping up more and more fish, augmented by add-ons like a longer line, chainsaw bait, or by having snazzier clothes to sell your catches for more dollars.
It’s ridiculous (!) how addictive the gameplay is. With each failure or gadget you purchase, you just want to sink that line right back in. You just have to try one more time to get that rare jellyfish that’s missing from your Fish-o-pedia. Getting clever new add-ons doesn’t help as each effort lets you get that much further and dare you to take bigger risks. Unfortunately, the game kinda wore out its welcome on lengthy ascensions when all you really wanted to do was try to capture a particular breed that lurks in the deep, dark depths.
Still, the game gets points for being as clever and well-put together as it is and for being a premium product, rather than a free-to-play shindig with a bunch of IAPs, something that would’ve made the in-game fisher shop a pain in the ass. The art direction is also completely amazing with every single piece of art cut into 90 and 45-degree angles. Everything about this game is clever-looking through and through.
If you need to lose a few hours, Ridiculous Fishing is a great way to do it.