The Best Fishing Mini-Games

If you ask me, a good fishing mini-game can really make or break the overall enjoyment of a game. If there’s a great fishing mechanic in a game that’s going to completely change how I look at it overall. And my deep love for these mini-games has turned me into something of a fishing mini-game connoisseur. So, today we’re going to delve into some of the good, and some of the bad, and talk about what makes each fishing mini-game good, or bad. 


Dredge is the game that made me make this list. It only came out recently and it’s a great game by a small team from New Zealand. Now with an eldritch horror themed fishing game you would expect there to be some good fishing, and it delivers in that regard. 

There’s nothing over the top, all the mechanics for fishing are timing based, it boils down to pressing a button at the right time. But, within this the game includes so much variation. Some are just a marker going in a circle, but others you need to catch the rising bubbles, or make sure you dodge the gaps in the spinning dials.

On top of this, different rods give you access to different fishing spots so you have to pick and choose what equipment you are bringing out with you. And once you’ve caught them you have to figure out how to store them in your Diablo style inventory. Battling with the odd shapes is half the battle in maximising your haul for the day. 

They take the simplest concept and keep it fresh throughout the whole game. Although, if you do want to try this one out, keep the lights on, or grab your safety blanket. 


Raft fishing has to go down as one of the most egregious displays of a fishing mechanic of all time. I mean the entire game is about floating on a raft! In all that floating you expect me to be happy with an exactly-the-same-as-World-of-Warcraft fishing mechanic? 

You throw a fishing line in the ocean, and then click when there’s a bite. That’s the same as WoW, but at least in WoW you get the rest of WoW. In Raft you just get a raft. 

Ultimately this one is just such a let down. I played this game with like six of my friends and immediately claimed the fishing role, but the most fun I had while doing it was making a Down To Fish sign. 

Sea of Thieves

From a game about floating around aimlessly to a treasure hunting, high-octane adventure, Sea of Thieves has an amazing fishing mechanic.

Casting a line out into the open water while your crew sails the high seas is an amazing thing, and once the fish is hooked the fun really begins. In Sea of Thieves you have a fish on the hook you have to mirror its movements to wear the fish out before you can reel it in. 

But then the true beauty of the fish comes to light. There’s multiple types of each species, with different colours (even bioluminescent variations) and sell prices. You can even catch trophy fish which you can use to increase your reputation as the greatest fisherman on the high seas. 

Sea of Thieves is already an amazing game, but by adding a wonderful and varied fishing experience they’ve just dropped a little cherry on top of an amazing, although gunpowder filled, sundae. 


Corekeeper is a great little survival game which is a ton of fun to play with some friends. Battling the underground dangers and building a little base to thrive in is incredibly fun, and there’s a lot of parts of this game that I loved. But, fishing was not one of them. 

Although it did have a part of fishing mini-games that I do love, loot! When fishing gives you a chance to hook in something that isn’t a fish there’s just a level of excitement around that. Expecting to reel in a fish but instead getting a treasure chest, or a powerful weapon is just plain fun. 

And Corekeeper does give you that, and you can reel in some cool items, but my dislike for this fishing mini-game comes from the mechanics of the game. The best way to describe this mechanic is if you took the Stardew Valley mini-game, but removed the fun. Instead of matching the fish’s movement you are simply just waiting for it to not move, and then clicking. And to make it even less exciting, each fish has a pattern that you can learn so you can just get into the rhythm and reel in fish all day. 

Final Fantasy XV

I wanted to use this space to mention Final Fantasy XIV, but I think that’s almost unfair as it’s less of a mini-game and a core gameplay loop in that game. 

However, Final Fantasy XV does have a wonderful fishing system in the middle of its big empty world. In true Final Fantasy fashion you can build equipment from the ground up, taking your pick of rod, reel, lure, and even your fishing line. It’s like you’re building a car in Need for Speed, but the only fishtails you’ll get here are the ones on your catch.

On top of the customisation available the fishing is pretty fun too. You battle against the fish, fighting to bring it in while making sure that your line doesn’t snap. It’s nothing too crazy, until the grouper you’re reeling in launches itself out of the water. 

But, the real charm of Final Fantasy XV’s fishing is the little cut scenes after each successful catch. It begins with picking up the smaller fish and holding them up for the camera. But once you manage to pull in some real big fish you get to watch a little cutscene of all the characters launching themselves into the water to grab the prize and take a photo! 

Know any other games with great fishing mechanics? Please let me know and I would love to check them out! 

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Lover of all things MMOs, professional wrestling, JRPGs, and most things inbetween

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