PHIL ' TINY TACKLE' KING tries to catch a big fish to go with his plate of chips...
This sort of fishing doesn't involve lazing by the river bank - you can't catch a 100kg
swordfish with a cheapo rod and tin of maggots! Instead, you're equipped with a motor boat.
Trouble is, you have to catch enough fish to pay fo its hire and petrol, not to mention
all your tackle.
Start by picking your navigation route through the South Seas, making sure you have enough
fuel - run out and you have to pay for your own rescue!
Once at your chosen spot, the scene switches to a 3-D view from the back of the boat,
with your rod in the middle. Attach a line and one of five types of bait, each used at a
specific depth to attract a particular type of fish - the sketchy instructions don't give
you the details, so it's trial and error.
Reel out your line to the required depth and wait until seagulls are circling above. This
is your cue to throw some 'chum' (sardines) out to attract your prey. If everything's right
(including your speed) you should get a bite - indicated by the rod bending.
The big fish will soon pull your line out unless you quickly push up your clutch control
to hold it, and pull back to reel in. Watch the drag bar though: if the line gets too tense
it'll snap as the fish jumps out of the water (nice graphic).
It sounds tricky, but the reeling-in process is a piece of cake, in easy mode at least.
On the harder level, you have to watch your line tension more carefully, allowing some
slack when the fish struggles.
To start with, though, the main problem I had was getting a bite at all. After several
goes I hadn't even caught a sprat - I felt like going home and having my sardines for tea!
But after all the waiting, my first catch was exhilarating.
I felt real panic as I hastily lowered the baot's speed, altered my clutch control and
reeled in - I was even leaning back in chair! The thrill of the first catch is never repeated,
and it does get repetitive, but the long-term challenge of making enough money to travel to
deeper waters (for the really big fish) keeps you hooked.