Getting the fish to bite is fairly simple - while they're not likely to swallow an old shoe, these scaled leviathans will hit just about anything else you throw in. Older fish are pickier though, and various lures will prove more effective during different times of day, seasons, weather conditions and locations. Various lures like to be jerked and jiggled at different speeds, but it’s still pretty easy for any gamer to pick up and start snagging bass in only a few minutes.
There are, however, some small but lingering frustrations. Both your line and the underwater camera flop from side to side a bit more than they should, which can be disorienting, and you can adjust the direction of your cast, but not the distance. When you have 30 seconds left on the timer and there are fish 14 feet away, it sucks that you have to heave your lure out 30 feet or more and reel back in to get to them.
In fact, a more precise casting scheme is just one of the modern elements that the game lacks. There's an updated look that’s fairly nice (thank goodness), but not only is there no online play, there's no multiplayer mode at all. Our fondest memories of fishing games - and also of actual fishing, come to think of it - all involve multiple people. Let us play together. Also, clearer instructions about how to use the various lures would be welcome, as would the chance to customize your character's clothes, appearance, or voice.
These aren't crippling faults; they're just a too-strong reminder that this is an enhanced arcade game, not a full-blown, evolutionary sequel. Of course, if arcade-y is what you are looking for, then you’ll really like Sega Bass Fishing, especially at a lower-than-normal retail price.
Mar 6, 2008