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GO Series: Fishing Resort - DSiWare Review

Game Info
GO Series: Fishing Resort

DSiWare | GAMEBRIDGE | 1 Player | Out Now | 200 Nintendo Points
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7th November 2011; By KnucklesSonic8

GO Series: Fishing Resort is the second fishing sim on the DSiWare platform, yet its style of play and target market are both different from the alternative. For $2, GAMEBRIDGE's latest release on the service definitely has a kid-friendly look to it, and you might even say it has kid-friendly gameplay too. But one thing you can't say about this game is that it's a lot of fun.

    The game has a pick-up-and-play appeal going for it that makes you want to dive in and start fishing immediately. Right from the get-go, you're introduced to a small square-shaped lake that fills up most of the Touch Screen. Unless you select the tutorial-oriented Practice Mode, you can just tap any area on the water to zoom in and see shadows of fish lurking underwater. A second tap will actually send your float out onto the surface to attract the fish. When the float sinks, you need to tap the Touch Screen once again to confirm the hit. This will then initiate a little battle sequence of sorts as you try to nab the fish in question.

    How it works is as the potential catch sways from left to right, arrows will appear on screen that coincide with the movements of the fish. Players are tasked with tapping and holding the stylus on the screen and flicking a ball upwards (hopefully) in the same direction that the arrows are pointing. If you accurately match the angle, the chase will get even faster. If you continually chain on-target shots together, then the animations will convey a greater sense of speed. But if you're a little off or if you completely miss the mark, the speed will decrease, giving the fish an opportunity to escape if the slowness continues. 

    Once the fish tires out, you'll once again have to hold down the stylus to bring up a power gauge and flick upwards with the right timing to send it flying. Then, as it descends back down to the water, a well-timed swipe of the stylus will put your net out for the catch. If you are successful, you'll be shown a results screen that displays the weight of the fish, its size, and the number of points earned for the catch. It's a pretty simple system, and the animations that are shown during these sequences are decent enough for what they are.

When looking at the body of water from a bird's-eye view, off to the right-hand side of the screen you'll find a couple different menu selections to acquaint yourself with. The first one displays your personal status in the game with respect to the number of fish you've caught since you started playing. As well, this screen displays your character's three main skills: Eyesight, Skill and Knowledge. Slowly but surely, your performance and success rate will improve, as though the game were trying to incorporate a morsel of RPG elements into the mix. And finally, from this same menu you can also change the type of float at the end of your fishing rod, or view any hints you've unlocked.

    The second option will take you to the in-game Shop where you can spend any points you've earned from catches towards rod, line and hook improvements, new float types, low-priced hints and special items. The game also features over 50 challenges that you can attempt through the third menu option. Depending on the difficulty of the challenge, you can earn a lot of points by completing these tasks, which usually involve catching a number/type of fish or following directions. Then there's also the catch index which shows the different kinds of fish you've discovered, your best records, and brief blurbs on where they're usually found in the lake area. This can be especially useful for the type-specific challenges.

    As if the cartoon visuals already didn't give it away, GO Series: Fishing Resort isn't deep by any means. Once again, the game takes a simpler approach with its presentation in that it really tries to appeal to casual, younger players. Even then, with both the visuals and the audio, I'd say the presentation is kind of mediocre. What you see is what you get, so if your goal with this is to just come and fish for five minutes you can do that without spending much time scrolling through menus or anything like that. I'm not sure you'd want to continue playing for very long, though. Not because there's something seriously wrong with the game, but the fun factor just isn't very high.

Part of the reason for that is the somewhat predictable AI. You'll find fish will always swim away from the floating lure and suddenly turn around as if they realized they dropped something. At least the randomness of where the fish congregate keeps you exploring all areas of the pond. There is always a chance of discovering a rare fish, but that doesn't keep you going or anything. 

    Interestingly, even with the presence of the speed-increasing animations, you don't really feel that attached to what's taking place. That's not to say the action is rudimentary or even lifeless, but the sense of speed the game is trying hard to convey just doesn't actually provide that same feeling in reality.

    Overall, I don't think GO Series: Fishing Resort is a bad way to spend a few short minutes. It's natural to be more forgiving to the game since it's price at a low, low price of $2, but even still it's just a satisfactory game. Nothing more than that. Moreover, don't be surprised if you start gravitating to other DSiWare releases sooner than you might like. You'll quickly realize that there are better games available you could be spending your time with, and so with that in mind, it's probably best just to give the game a skip.

16/30 - Okay/Average

Gameplay 6/10 - Fairly simple lure-and-catch system, gradually improve your player's stats, casual-oriented, predictable AI, takes place in a  small lake
Presentation 5/10 - Has a simple kid-friendly look to it, cartoon visuals, animations are decent enough, somewhat mediocre all-around
Enjoyment 2/5 - Fun factor isn't all there, portrayed sense of speed in the game doesn't match reality, not something you'll play regularly, not engaging
Extra Content 3/5 - Low asking price, 50 challenges in all with unlockables to strive for, easy to pick up but it won't be long before you move on

Equivalent to a score of 53% (percentage score is approximate and based solely on the previously stated rating) - Our Rating System

Review by KnucklesSonic8

GO Series: Fishing Resort
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