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AX 2019: Fishing Star World Tour Hands-On

Fishing Games Are Often an Overlooked Category. So, Can Aksys Games’ Fishing Star World Tour Be Able to Stand Out? Especially at a Convention like Anime Expo?

Fishing Star World Tour | Logo

The only thing that could make this even more awesome is an airship. Thankfully, this game has that too! Welcome to Fishing Star World Tour!

Fishing games are usually not something I personally seek out. Sure, I’ve enjoyed fishing as a diversion in things like Harvest Moon or Ocarina of Time but aside from that, I can’t say I’m a fan of the genre. Nothing wrong with it, mind you, but I think fishing and I think simulator. Which personally isn’t all that relaxing for me. However, Aksys Games may just have something that might change my mind. A game by the name of Fishing Star World Tour that honestly surprised me at Anime Expo. Why? Well, let’s dive in and find out.

Fishing Pole, Check; Lures and Bait, Check; Airship, Double Check!

Fishing Star World Tour | Area Select

The area select screen. You’ll be able to visit quite a few varied areas.

Fishing Star World Tour is interestingly not the first fishing title Aksys Games has published. Back in 2015, they had also published a title called Family Fishing which I actually reviewed. Let me tell you upfront, that these two games couldn’t be more different. For one, Fishing Star World Tour is more focused on you against the fish, rather than facing off against a CPU opponent. In addition, Fishing Star World Tour has one of the best setups imaginable. Your character ends up obtaining an airship and decides to use it to catch fish from around the world. It’s simple, but I adore silly premises like that. But, how does the game feel? Let’s talk about that next.

Joy-Con Fishing 101

Fishing Star World Tour | Joy-Con Fishing

Fishing is done with the Joy-Con. Yes, that does mean motion controls, but these are quite enjoyable.

Fishing in Fishing Star World Tour is a simple affair. This is a motion game that heavily utilizes the Joy-Con controllers. That said, the controls themselves feel natural. While I did run into a few hiccups here and there, I’m more inclined to believe that was due to my own inexperience. Whenever I did have an issue with the Joy-Con getting confused, simply resetting the Joy-con with a button press would solve the issue. All-in-all it was a pretty enjoyable experience. Were there any other issues? Well, only two and even then, they’re pretty minor.

The first is trying to move with the fish in order to relax the tension on the line. If the tension bar gets too high, your line will snap. Of course, the fish is getting away then and you’ll need to try again. For some reason, I couldn’t consistently get the movement to work. I have a few theories as to why, however.

Fishing Star World Tour | First Fish

How you play Fishing Star Worl Tour is really up to you. Do you just try and catch one of everything? Or do you try and go for the maximum amount of stars to set some records?

Part of this, I think, was due to the fact I was still learning controls and part of it due to tackling one of the later areas. What I found worked was to just relax my hand and level out the Joy-Con. This would relax the line enough that the tension would reset, and I could continue fighting the fish. The other thing is a little sillier. I kept reeling in the fish with the wrong hand.

While playing Fishing Star World Tour, one hand controls the rod, while the other controls the reel. In my case, I was using my right hand to control the rod and was supposed to reel the fish in by making a cranking motion with the left Joy-Con. However, I found it much more natural for some reason to immediately start reeling in with my right hand. Which led to the fishing rod, of course, moving all over the place. This partially why I think I had to reset the Joy-Con position every so often. But, in the end, it’s harmless. Just something to be aware of if you decide to give it a try. That all said, let’s wrap this one up.

Family Airship Fishing Fun Awaits!

Fishing Star World Tour | Equipment

I can imagine younger players may need a bit of help in understanding the menus. However, that’s not a bad thing. It’s a bonding opportunity for parents and other family members.

Fishing Star World Tour was a fun diversion at Anime Expo. I honestly didn’t know what to expect from this one, but it was probably one of the most enjoyable experiences I had at the show. Sure, it’s not Luminous Avenger iX, but it certainly was a fun time. This is a title I can see myself playing with a group of friends if for nothing else than to see who can catch the biggest fish or fail trying. That said, I do think there is good single player potential here as well. The real winners here I think though are families.

There aren’t enough good family games out there. Sure, I may want to goof around with my friends while playing this. However, I can see a family with younger children getting together to play this. The motion controls are simple enough for kids to learn and perfect. While they may need some help understanding the menus and mechanics, that’s something that can be a bonding experience. At the least I know one thing. Any game that utilizes an airship just go on a world fishing expedition is already a winner in my book.

Fishing Star World Tour will release September 26th for the Nintendo Switch. In the meantime, if you’d like to check out other titles from Aksys Games then take a look at our review of Little Dragon’s Café.

Benny Carrillo
A gamer since the days of the NES and SNES and a reporter since 2015. This hat-wearing otaku loves niche Japanese games, but has a soft spot for visual novels, Super Robot Wars, Mega Man, yuri, and Nepgear. Benny has covered E3 and Anime Expo since 2015 and served as Operation Rainfall’s Visual Novel Manager. Now, this seasoned reporter spends his days trying to clear his epic backlog in between writing analytical articles and reviews.
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