Fishing Minigame

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Many video games are made in Japan, and one of Japan's leading food industries is fishing. This is a culture where squid and octopus are seen as viable daily snacks, so fishing is pretty ingrained into the culture. So if the video game you are playing is Sidequest-ish and Mini Game-ish enough, it will have a fishing minigame.

Fishing minigames also occasionally appear in Western games, mainly those that fall on the more "simulationist" side of the "game"/"simulation" line. Something about fishing is impossibly tempting to simulationists. They're obviously addicted to bass. Or maybe they just enjoy boredom. Who knows?

Fishing minigames are often Luck based missions, much to players' annoyance. Especially when fish aren't the only thing you can catch.

Examples of Fishing Minigame include:
  • Fate and Torchlight have fishing games based on reaction time. The fish can be used to temporarily or permanently turn your pet into a more powerful creature, or they contain artifacts or gems (sometimes much larger than the fish).
  • Mabinogi Has one where you can catch fish for cooking skill, treasure chests, quest scrolls, and worn-out equipment which you would need to repair for it to be useful.
  • The Legend of Zelda Links Awakening, for the Game Boy, was the first to feature a fishing minigame.
  • In Fable, you can fish anywhere there's water. Even a puddle.
    • It's not really that hard (and there's no actual penalty to losing) but the later instances become so finely balanced that fishing up that last Silver Key can take upwards of ten minutes. Needless to say, these are the most annoying ten minutes of the entire game, and lots of players used an exploit to avoid having to fish up the last few keys.
    • Let's not be forgetting the loading screens before and after.
  • Dark Cloud and its sequel, Dark Chronicle, had a fishing minigame. In the second game you could then race your caught fish in a 'finny frenzy' which is just as exciting as it sounds. There was also a "fish weigh-in" contest, where the combined weight of three wild fish would give you a prize.
  • Fishing makes up a Mini Game for most of the Breath of Fire games. At one point, if you get a strong enough rod, you can actually snag treasure chests, or even fish-creatures named Manillos, who sell you stuff.
  • Animal Crossing, all versions. Some people on the AXA board would go so far as to say that fishing for coelacanths on rainy nights, along with selling the fish and spending the money on furniture, is the main game in AC and everything else is the side-quest. One member there claims to have bought a 1.4 million bell mansion after five to seven nights of fishing, compared to the more typical two months of growing fruit. Of course, there are No Cartoon Fish.
    • While there are no cartoon fish, there are cartoon frogs and octopodes. Along with regular frogs and octopodes. One can be your friendly neighbors, and the other you feed alive to a fat walrus for wallpaper.
    • Frog and Octopus neighbors may ask you to catch a fish for them (to eat), to which you can respond by giving them a frog or octopus you fished out of the water. They have no problem eating it.
  • Both My Sims have it in a few places. Despite one being purely Mini Games, and the other a bunch of Fetch Quests with a few item-gathering Mini Games.
  • The Suikoden series has fishing minigames, that double as ways to collect special items and armor (or worthless junk like old shoes.) Of particular note is Suikoden V, where it takes the form of a competition between the Prince, Subala, Logg and Lun. Notably, it doesn't really matter if you win or lose the contest; you keep everything you caught regardless. It's mainly an excuse for TrashTalking (though the Prince doesn't participate, for obvious reasons...)
  • Okami had a few, most notably when trying to catch a fish that ate the Moon. Technically, it only ate the moon's reflection. Which is... well, a lot weirder, actually.
  • In the GBA port of Donkey Kong Country, Funky Kong gives you a choice between his jet barrel and a fishing minigame. This is also present in the Game Boy Color port, except it's only accessed through the bonus menu and not through the main game.
  • Some in the Mario Party games.
  • All Harvest Moon games feature this trope as a fairly enjoyable but not particularly essential side activity. Occasionally fishing may trigger rewards or bonuses in the game. In The Island that Grows with You (a.k.a. Island of Happiness), catching and shipping 50 fish is the only way to get a certain character to move in.
  • Lego Island 2 has a fishing minigame too.
  • Final Fantasy VI required the player to catch and feed fish to the character's sick adoptive grandfather. Feeding him slow fish would kill him rapidly. Moderately speedy fish would also kill him, just more slowly. The only way to save Cid is by a steady diet of fast fish. However, whether he lives or dies makes no difference to the plot. If he dies, however, the character is Driven to Suicide via a Leap of Faith over her lousy luck at fishing.
  • Final Fantasy XII had a fishing minigame, notable because its completion was one of the conditions needed to obtain the Wrymhero Blade, arguably one of the most powerful weapons in the game.
  • Legend of Legaia has a very good one of these.
  • Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon allows you to catch fish. Your storage increases each time you bring a species to the fat chocobo who holds your items for the first time; any others are Vendor Trash.
  • The Amazon Trail had a fishing minigame, but it made sense. You're on a boat. On a river. You need food. How else are you going to get it? As does later versions of Oregon Trail.
  • Summon Night: Swordcraft Story 2 has this as minigame. You can gain points which can be traded for hard to find items.
  • The Sims: Castaway for the PlayStation 2, PSP and DS all have fishing "mini-games". On the PlayStation 2 your sim stands next to a school of fish with a spear, then has to wait for a fish to jump into the air in order to stab a fish. On the DS the scene actually changes to a mini-game where you stab the fish with your stylus. Not sure about the PSP version.
  • Persona 4 has a fishing minigame that seems entirely luck-based at first, but once you figure it out, it becomes slightly skill-based, if tediously mashing the square button can be considered a skill. It can net you rare items and is required for maxing out the Hermit s-link.
  • Most Breath of Fire games have a fishing minigame. In the third one, the game requires you to actually fish for a plot-related event and the PSP port unlocks special content using the fishing minigame; the fourth actually got its fishing minigame turned into a Japanese smartphone game spinoff.
  • Cartoon Network Block Party has a fishing minigame.
  • Choro Q has one, WITH CARS!!
  • Magicians Quest Mysterious Times also lets you go fishing. Rather than sell the fish, though, you give them to a magical book so he can turn them into useful items.
  • Banjo-Kazooie: Grunty's Revenge has a fishing minigame... sort of. The mini-game pops up several times with several different "skins," and while it is indeed about fishing in some of them, in its first version, it's about... catching sheep.
  • Deadly Premonition.
  • The Nintendo 3DS's built in AR Games include two fishing games- one where you have two minutes to earn as many points as you can from catching fish, and one where you have infinite time and can catch as many as you want without worrying about points.
  • Solatorobo has a mostly optional fishing minigame (you only have to do it three times during the course of the story, but you can come back and do it whenever you want) but you're not really fishing for... fish. You're fishing for giant hermit crabs which wear battleships as shells. Capturing them nets you points based on junk salvaged from the battleship; the points can be exchanged for Power Crystals and rare parts for the Dahak.
  • NieR has one, and it can be quite frustrating, partly because the in-game explanation is wrong.
  • Adventure Quest Worlds has recently included one as the very first "trade skill" introduced in-game.
  • Chantelise starts providing fishing poles to the pair of protagonists about midway through the game. Immediately upon receiving her pole, the swordswoman's older sister Chante comments on the newly obsessed look in Elise's eyes and how clearly they'll be doing a lot of this from now on.
    • While poles are available, it's impossible to buy bait or lures anywhere, leaning to another funny moment when the instructor says she just needs to find something small and sparkly with feathers or something. Chante (who is currently a fairy) retorts that they couldn't possibly be expected to find anything like that anywhere... and notices Elise has that creepy look again... and is looking at her now... and this is going exactly where it sounds like. Fortunately, Chante is very good at surviving close encounters with fish.

Non-minigame examples of video game fishing

  • Pokémon allows you to go fishing with a rod in order to initiate wild Pokemon battles and capture Water Pokemon. Later games do, however, introduce timing as a measure of whether you'll be successful.
  • World of Warcraft has fishing as a craft skill.
    • Also, since fishing requires actually equipping a fishing pole, some players keep one equipped at other times as a Self-Imposed Challenge or perhaps for the purpose of Cherry Tapping weaker enemies in a humorous way (though there's also a large fish one can catch that is also equippable, with largely the same results). Before the weapon skill nerf, it was possible for a maxed fishing skill to make your fishing pole an unusually deadly weapon for its level.
    • So does Runescape, but it has fishing-based minigame too.
    • And Final Fantasy XI, which introduced a minor minigame aspect in an attempt to ward off botters. It didn't work, as a botter could simply hack the client and tell the server they mined a fish, and the server gleefully gives it to them every time.
    • City of Heroes does not have a fishing minigame, however perhaps as a parody it has a fishing emote.
    • Ultima Online has a full regular skill for fishing.
    • EverQuest lets you fish, but tries its hardest to avoid letting to make money off it.
    • The 1.8 patch for Rift added a new Fishing skill and a companion Survival skill. You can make cakes with some of the fish. Don't necessarily think about that too hard.
    • HOW i MIN 4 fish?
  • Dwarf Fortress gives Dwarfs (and humans/elves if you mod the game to control them) the ability to fish, but it's entirely out of the players hands(as are most things, it being a God Game). Some of the fish are extremely likely to eat the Dwarfs involved in the exercise due to a popular glitch.
  • In the PC RPG game Arx Fatalis you can combine a pole and string to make fishing rod and catch fish to cook and eat from most any water area.
  • The Sims 2: Seasons includes Fishing as an activity your sims can perform, along with a skill badge that (somehow) affects the quality of fish you catch. The Sims 3 is supposed to have fishing in it as well. This is high level, so no mini-game.
  • Many Sonic Adventure players found Big the Cat's fishing-based story annoying. It was shorter than the other modes and had little relevance to the plot. Also, you played as a very stupid character.
  • Monster Hunter allows you to fish at specific spots, and you don't even have to bring a fishing rod. As long as you have bait, your character will produce a rod and cast the line. Apart from there being fish you can have cooked to eat later, there are types of fish you can use to mine ore and sharpen your weapon.
  • The Diablo-clone Fate, and its successor Torchlight, allows you to fish for fish that transform your pet, plus the occasional magical boots and some other nice items.
  • In Resident Evil 4 there are certain watery areas where you can kill fish and put them in your inventory, where they can be used as healing items.
    • You can also hop back in the motorboat and catch a few more with your harpoons.
  • In Ultima Underworld, this is a convenient way to get food, as a body of water on nearly every level has fish in it. This is fortunate, as your player character needs food not just to heal damage but for food.
  • Fishing rods are used for two purposes in Minecraft. One is to pull mobs; the other is to fish. All bodies of water, even ones you make yourself, contain fish; you fish by throwing out your line and waiting for the bobber to go down. Once you have fishing rods, water, and a suitable supply of sticks and string to replace your rods, your food problems are solved.