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Pro Cast Sports Fishing
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Pro Cast Sports Fishing
Published by: Marcus Lai on 2004-01-12
Page Views: 3583
Rating: 6/10

Fishing games, along with other non-mainstream sports, have slowly made their way into the American videogame scene the past few years. Thanks to Japanese gamers' love for bass fishing, a steady stream of fishing titles have made their way to the U.S., such as Sega's Get Bass, and Natsume's Reel Fishing. Pro Cast Sports Fishing is Capcom's attempt to hit it big in the bass scene on Xbox. The title stays moderately fun but the gameplay doesn't bite as much as the competition.

Pro Cast Sports Fishing has three modes – Arcade, Simulation, and Free Fishing. In Arcade mode, players fish in a certain local for points and bragging rights. Each competition is held at a different location and players have a certain amount of time to catch as many big bass as possible. Simulation ups the ante a bit by offering major tournaments to enter. Each tournament requires a fee, but the bigger the bass the more money you'll have to buy lures, line, poles, boats, and even fishing caps. Free fishing mode lets you fish at your leisure without any competition pressure.

Fishing takes place in numerous locals including forest lakes, bridges, factories, and dams. Some locations have crystal clear water making it easy to see the bass, whereas places like the factory have murky water with no visual indication of nearby fish.

Controls are intuitive and easy to get to gripes with. The D-pad lets players choose from four different cast types – overhead, underhand, sidearm, and backhand. The A button is used to cast the line, while the R trigger reels the line in. When a bass notices the lure, it will follow the lure as the line is reeled in. A hard trigger press will snap the reel forward, while a continuous mid press will make the lure swim at a constant speed. The Y button lets players choose from different lures. This is necessary when the weather is rainy and bass stay towards the bottom of the water, requiring a heavy lure. Players can also move their boat around the lake area to find a better fishing spot.

Gameplay heats up when the bass start to bite. The L trigger hooks a fish after its bitten the lure. When the fish is hooked the words "Fish On!" flash on the screen – very nice. Small fish only require a fast reel back to the boat. The big bass require heavy fighting. As the line is reeled back in a tension meter in the lower left of the screen will rise and fall. When the meter hits the red area for too long the line will break and the bass will get away. Players have to move the pole left/right/up/down to create less tension while reeling in the line. Huge bass require more patience and need the line to be pulled and relaxed before finally being caught.

While fishing does get exciting, hook a few bass in and you'll have the fish AI figured out. In most cases, no matter how attractive you make the lure, bass won't bite the bait until you've reeled in about 8 or 9 meters away from your boat. Most bass require the same slow coaxing before they go for the bait. A different set of AI behavior would make the game less predictable and more spontaneous.

Pro Cast Sports Fishing flops at a speedy 60 frames, with crisp graphics and arcade-style color palette. The water reflects surrounding areas is a very realistic way and the underwater detail and bass models are convincing.

Pro Cast Sports Fishing is a decent fishing title. It's a solid attempt at the fishing genre that novice players can quickly get a hold of. But fishing pros will be bored with the one-trick pony AI.

Review by: Marcus Lai



Related Link: The Gaming Age
  

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Pro Cast Sports Fishing
published by Marcus Lai on 2004-01-12
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