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Posted on Jun 26th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under Fishing in the Arcade, sega, dreamcast, fishing controller, motion control


When springtime rolls around a wide variety of outdoor activities becomes much more alluring. Getting outside and getting some sun is important to even the most hardcore of gamers. Fishing is a great hobby that can be enjoyed year round, but the comfortable temperatures of spring bring out the biggest crowds. It's such a large and popular hobby that Sega decided to make a fishing arcade game, Sega Bass Fishing.

The original arcade cabinet was developed by Sega AM 1 and released in 1997 as Get Bass in Japan. The game was successful enough in the arcade that Sega followed it up with Sega Marine Fishing in 1999. Both games would see console ports on the Sega Dreamcast, Sega Bass Fishing in 1999 and Sega Marine Fishing in 2000. Both games were among the more popular and successful Dreamcast games, as Sega released the Sega Fishing Controller to make the games feel more similar to both the arcade and real life, complete with motion controls.



Sega Bass Fishing would see a sequel on the Dreamcast in Sega Bass Fishing 2, which released after Sega announced the death of the Dreamcast. This timing actually makes Sega Bass Fishing 2 one of the more uncommon Dreamcast games on the market.

This arcade release features four stages and a variety of popular bass lures to use. In order to progress through the stages, the player must catch a weight threshold within a certain time limit. The time is always ticking down, making the machine hungry for quarters. The Dreamcast version adds a practice mode, a tournament mode, and four extra stages. On top of these additions each stage also has different times of the day, weather, and seasonal variations. Every port of the game since has been based on the Dreamcast version. The 2008 Wii port has even more content, it uses the Wii Remote instead of the Sega Fishing Controller to replicate the motion elements present in the Dreamcast controller. The Wii version adds seven more stages on top of the Dreamcast's total. The Wii port also adds in a Nature Trip mode, which is similar to practice mode without the soundtrack playing. To add a cherry on top, the Wii port has enhanced graphics. However, in March 2011 the Dreamcast port of Sega Bass Fishing was released to PC on Steam as a standalone game and within the Dreamcast Collection compilation. In October of the same year this same port came to the Playstation 3's Playstation Store, and the Xbox 360's Xbox Live Arcade with even more enhanced graphics.

The soundtrack for the game is excellent. Fishing is a relaxing hobby and sport for most of its participants, so most of the stages have a relaxing theme. Once a fish is caught and hooked then the game starts to rock, as the player fights with the fish to get his haul into the boat. There is quite of a bit of depth towards getting the attention of the fish and getting them to chase your lure. The time of day and weather are huge factors in the equation, with each one having an effect on which one of the large selection of lures will work best for the moment. Thankfully, the Dreamcast's graphical power was showcased in the game, as players can easily and clearly see the different sizes of fish. The bass are also incredibly detailed for the time, and their animations are smooth. Everything from the fish watching the lures, swimming to chase them, and opening their mouth wide to strike the lure is all well detailed and easy to see. This allows players to easily read their behavior, and potentially switch lures if the fish seem disinterested.


It's not all roses in this game though. The game seems to have some buggy physics. Fish will often get stuck on environmental objects, or even just the surface of the water. The game also experiences some slowdown during the Original mode, this tournament mode seems to render more fish at once than the Arcade mode, which likely contributes to this bit of lag. Trying to use the fishing controller's motion functionality to control the game does not seem to work most of the time, and this was not the fault of the controller, using motion controls on Sega Marine Fishing works extremely well. It seems like this port of Sega Bass Fishing had some parts of it rushed to meet its deadline. Thankfully, these problems are rather minor and do not hinder the playing experience too much.

Sega Bass Fishing is a definitive arcade port for the Dreamcast. The game was commercially important for Sega and the rather unique Sega Fishing Controller makes the Dreamcast one of the best consoles to enjoy its small library of fishing games. The rather low price of the entire fishing set makes it a must own for any Sega fan. The first Sega Bass Fishing and Sega Marine Fishing are both around $10 online and in most stores. The fishing controller is between $20-30 loose with boxed controllers around $40. Sega Bass Fishing 2's price is a bit harder to gauge as there aren't too many copies that float on the market at any one time, and all the searches cross over with the first games, controllers, and lots. It seems to average between $30-40 on its own.




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Comments
 
I personally love the Dreamcast's fishing games. They're a nice change of pace from the other titles in the console's library. They're unique, relaxing, and enjoyable. Reel Fishing Wild from Natsume is another good one on the Dreamcast that is worth considering as a third party title.

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