June 7, 2023

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Opinion Piece: An Ode To Fishing Mini-Games


With the release of Red Dead Redemption 2 in just 2 short weeks and the reveal that one of the many mini-games you will be able to partake in, in Rockstar’s latest open world epic, is fishing.  So I thought I would write this feature looking at the many games that have featured fishing as a game within the game so to speak.  And tell you why I love them and am always pleased at their inclusion in games like Red Dead Redemtpion 2.





The main reason I love when a game includes fishing as one of it’s mini-games is, after a lengthy game session I find it a very good way to unwind and come off the high the last few hours has brought me.  After all the epic action, violence, huge story moments and awesome set pieces.  I like nothing better than unwinding with some fishing afterwards and especially when in the likes of Red Dead 2 or Final Fantasy XV, not only can I go and fish but also go back to camp and cook them into meals.  I find it a great way to come down off that gaming high with something more slow and relaxing.



Something Slow & Simple

There’s just something slow and simple about a good fishing mini-game that I find ticks all the right boxes for me when I’m after something a bit more relaxing.  It might stem back to my Dreamcast days with what I would consider the best standalone fishing game ever made, Sega Big Bass Fishing.  Especially with the fishing controller it was so much fun.  I feel like other games that have featured fishing or indeed other standalone fishing games take several nods from that game in the way the sport is represented (fishing is classed as a sport right?  I know it’s not really a sport a bit  like snooker but anyway that’s a whole other discussion!).



Another Thing To Collect

Now, I like a good collectible in games.  As long as it’s not stupid amounts of things.  Hundreds of bird feathers or something daft.  A few dozen of each thing that are well hidden and fun to go out of my way to find as I’m exploring the world.  Fishing adds another collectible to my list in a lot of games there is a sheet that fills up when you’ve caught a new type of fish which, for me, adds to the fun of it.  Trying to get them all in the same sort of manner as other in-game collectibles.  It’s another list to complete.  It can vary from game to game whether I’ll ever actually complete the list but still I appreciate however much of it I manage and it adds to the “game” side of the fishing.



It’s Another Little Distraction

When I’m off exploring in games and come across a new fishing spot I always stop and have a go to see what new fish I might catch there.  Or maybe the shop sells a new fishing rod that’s better than the one I’ve already got.  Thinking specifically about Final Fantasy XV there.  But in Nier: Automata there is fishing also in any body of water in the game world you can stop and fish.  The one I used most often is the one right outside the main base.  Every time I had to go back to the base for something I couldn’t help myself from fishing there before I went in.

And I might use the few moments of down time before the fish bites to set the controller down and check my phone and things like that.  It’s just a little distraction and a breather from the main game that I appreciate.



So I say three cheers for the fishing mini-game and all the games that include them.  Or any other sort of mini-game actually that’s a little more slow-paced and relaxing.  I want to give a shoutout for golf in Grand Theft Auto V as well as I always found that to tick a lot of the same boxes for me.  Just a slower more relaxing thing to do in the game.  To take a step back and maybe reflect on all the epicness that has just occurred in the main game whilst enjoying a simpler pastime and coming off the euphoric rush of all the action.