Enjoying Pocket Fishing’s Five Amazing Locations on the Nintendo Switch

Pocket Fishing
Reviewed On
Nintendo Switch
Available For

Ever get to the end of a week and just desperately want something that takes you to that tranquil place where all of your woes melt away and leave you more relaxed and at peace? Me, too, and I figured a fishing simulator would do just that. Pocket Fishing offered me that opportunity, but it didn’t quite meet my expectations.

Plot Ahoy!

Pocket Fishing is a fishing simulator. You open the title to go fishing, and that’s all you’re going to do. There’s no plot here at all. You load up Pocket Fishing, and it dumps you straight into the simulator, which consists of moving around a fishing hole and using a basic tapping minigame to catch your fish. Your success rate largely depends on how you equip things, such as your bait and your gear.

Review Notes

That sounds simple and straightforward, right? Unfortunately, the way the controls are mapped makes exactly zero sense. If you have ever played a Switch title in your life, you know that you can use your stick to look around. The d-pad is usually for motion, right? Pocket Fishing uses the actual D-pad to move the camera, so already, you know playing is going to feel awkward. Frankly, the controls do not become any clearer. Doing anything requires you to move a cursor and then punch a button. The cursor, by the way, is mapped to the right stick, so I guess the idea there was you’d be using the cursor more often than moving the camera? Maybe? The UI at least helps as the correct button to tap does appear on screen, but the controls are far from intuitive.

In terms of gameplay, it’s straightforward. You cast your line and wait for something to bite. When it does, you tap a button to weaken the fish. When that menu disappears, you follow the motion of the fish based by tapping right or left. At a certain point you catch your fish. Yay! Rinse and repeat. The gameplay does not seem to vary from this pattern though Pocket Fishing advertises that two fishing styles are available. Its interest comes, I suppose, from being able to move around and possibly see other fishing locations.

In terms of graphics and sound design, these are fairly standard. The water effects are nicely rendered, but the fish look weirdly unnatural. The sound design is pretty much limited to bird calls and water sounds which while appropriate to the game’s content, do get a bit monotonous after a while.

The layout design doesn’t feel as though it suits the Switch. Even setting aside the strange control mapping, the UI looks like you should be able to use touchscreen functionality, but you can’t. You instead have to use your right stick to move the cursor and then punch a physical button. I suppose these are holdovers from Pocket Fishing’s roots as it’s apparently based on a title developed for the iOS and Android platforms.


I like the idea of being able to move around the fishing hole to possibly catch different fish, and Pocket Fishing does feature a day/night cycle, which gets you different fish. Overall, the game features 65 different species and five different locations that include New Zealand and the Amazon River. At first glance, Pocket Fishing seems to offer a great experience, but it’s not quite where it needs to be due to the odd control layout design and repetitive gameplay.

Pocket Fishing retails for $12.99 on the Nintendo store.

Stray Thoughts From Behind the Keyboard

  1. There’s apparently a talent system in Pocket Fishing?
  2. Pocket Fishing’s different types of bait are kind of fun.
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