More Than A Reeling: A Review Of Ridiculous Fishing
I like to sit around and think of ways to spend three dollars. It could be spent on a few hamburgers, or I’m sure there’s some dollar bins somewhere that could be raided, but in any event it’s fun to think about. In a society that typically equates higher expenditures with better quality, there’s great satisfaction in getting a lot for only three dollars.
Point blank, I will tell you: Vlambeer’s new iOS title Ridiculous Fishing costs $2.99, and I cannot think of a better way to spend that money.
Normally at Pixels or Death, we wouldn’t spend the time to break down or even comment on individual aspects of a game. We like to focus on the bigger picture: where games fit, and what makes them important.
However, Ridiculous Fishing requires an exception, and the biggest reason for that exception is the history of the game. Success of a fun, quirky little flash game called Radical Fishing spawned an announcement from developer Vlambeer that a sequel entitled Ridiculous Fishing was in the works. Unfortunately, a clone appeared in the app store not long thereafter, threatening to steal the thunder of this promising follow-up.
Now Vlambeer, along with Greg Wohlwend and Zach Gage, have released Ridiculous Fishing, making a mark so bold that the clone will become a mere footnote in app store lore.
Controls feature a tilt mechanic that’s fairly standard for iOS games, but they’re simple, precise, and well-implemented. The art direction of the game is unique and interesting, distinguishing the game from its “cartoony” competitors. (The most “cartoony” thing in Ridiculous Fishing is the misanthropic – but hilarious – cast of characters that populates the game’s faux-social component, Byrdr.)
Earning money (by shooting fish in the sky – how… crazy!!) unlocks bonus items like bigger guns, new hats, and longer fishing lines. If you’re waiting for the other shoe to drop, you can rest easy – it won’t: there are no in-app purchases in Ridiculous Fishing.
Eirik Suhrke’s soundtrack is even inventive. It possesses some of the same playfulness as his Spelunky soundtrack, with just enough clever twists to require closer listening. For example, when reeling in your fishing line, the music from the level reverses.
Everything about Ridiculous Fishing screams confidence. The lack of in-app purchases, the stark visuals, and obvious attention to minute details (again, like the soundtrack) cumulitively make it one of the most extraordinary examples of what gaming on the iOS platform can be.
Pixels or Death gives Ridiculous Fishing a five out of five.