Sega Bass Fishing

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a game by Activision, and Wow Entertainment, Inc.
Platforms: Dreamcast, PC
Editor Rating: 7.3/10, based on 4 reviews
User Rating: 6.7/10 - 9 votes
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See also: Bass Games
Sega Bass Fishing
Sega Bass Fishing
Sega Bass Fishing

We hear you laughing, but this game is going to get you hooked on fishing. For sports-fishing fans, Bass Fishing's remarkable water effects and realistic environments make this game a no-brainer. It even comes bundled with a fishing controller that resembles an actual rod and reel. The underwater views were truly impressive. Even non-fishermen will love the intense action and the unique cast-and-reel gameplay enough to hook up with this title. Get your bass in gear for this game.

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System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

Virtual 3D fishing? Based on the arcade game? Has the world gone mad? Cool!-Actually, Sega Bass Rshing yas one of the more fun tides at the shov featuring lush graphics ari Extensive lure selections. You can play'iq , tburoarnent, arcade, or'practice rriode. There's a specially made fishing, condler foY the that to reel, cast, and drag your line'rfeajfe-tically--it even rumbles when, fish are hooke'd. This game kicks bass!


When a new system is released, you will usually find that all of the traditional genres are covered early on in the life of the new system -- fighting, racing, and sports games. Once the system is more established and the user base has grown, companies are usually more willing to release games that fit into a niche of gamers. It is for this reason that I was surprised to see Sega release Sega Bass Fishing so early in the life of the system. I know that I personally enjoy fishing games but does the rest of the world?

Sega Bass Fishing is an arcade port of a bass fishing game and the arcade influence really shows. You can play the arcade mode or enjoy a bass tournament and test your fishing skills against other anglers. There are four different fishing holes that you can fish and a ton of lures available. The action is always hot and heavy and purchasing the optional fishing controller is a must for this game.


Before we talk about the game, I want to talk about the optional fishing controller that is available. Unlike the PSX game Bass Landing, the fishing controller does not come packed in with the game so you will have to shell out the extra cash, but it is well worth the extra money. The fishing controller will add to your experience like nothing else out there. The controller consists of an actual fishing reel, built in vibration and sensors that track the movement of the rod. To cast you line, you just flick the controller in a casting motion and away it goes. The thing is sturdy and just feels natural. My only complaint with it is that the reeling action is a little lose. It would have been a little better if there was a tension or drag setting that you could feel when reeling but this is just a minor point.

So now that you have your virtual fishing rod plugged in, it is time to hit the game. Like I mentioned above, there are two modes of play. You can play the arcade mode, which is exactly as the name implies -- the arcade mode. Since this game is an arcade port, you will play the same game that some poor sap is pumping quarters in down at the arcade. If you are looking for some quick fishing action where the fish seem to be aggressive, the arcade mode is the place to go. Even though the fish are more aggressive, this mode is time based so you are allotted a certain amount of time to fulfill a predetermined amount of weight. Catching one large fish or a number of small fish can fill this weight. The bottom line is that you just need to fulfill the quota before the time expires. To help you out, you are awarded extra time bonuses for catching bigger fish as well as a bonus for getting a fish to hit. All in all, the arcade mode is quick and easy and full of action.

For the more serious anglers out there, you will want to play the tournament mode. Like the arcade mode, you are racing against time but instead of a number counting down, you are racing against the clock. You will start out in one area in the early morning. You will fish that area from 8:00 to noon. You will then take a break and fish from 1:00 to 5:00. At the end of the day you will rank in to see how your total weight stacks up against the other people on the lake. It seemed like the fish were much more picky about what and when they would hit in this mode. I really had to find the correct lure for the conditions and have the patience. While this mode was much more of a simulation, it still lacked the depth to be called more than an advanced arcade mode.

I guess the best part of this game is that it is just fun to play. You can sit down for hours and reel in fish without going through the hassles of trolling around a lake and trying to find them. You basically have access to all of the hot fishing holes on the lake and you can crank in something within a couple of casts. This makes for a great party game. We had everyone from my 4-year-old niece to 80-year-old grandfather cranking in the fish; laughter and excitement filled the room. Once the party was over and everyone went home, the game really lacked the depth to motivate me to play. There are two main reasons for this. Number one is that, while being thrown right where the fish are has it's advantages when you want to show off the game or have some quick action, it really cheapens the experience if you want to get involved in the game and feel like you are really out there on the lake fishing. You only have a single lake with four predetermined spots that you can fish at. It really does not leave any room for exploration and discovering your own secret spots.

The second reason that I lost the motivation to play was that it was just way too easy to catch a fish. Once I had them hooked, I basically just cranked them in. Sure, on the screen it looked like the fish was running and jumping but it never took out line or came unhooked. If I really tried, I could snap my line but even that was difficult. There were times where I would hook a 15 plus pound bass and it would take 15 seconds to bring it in. These should have been epic battles where at any point, I knew the line could break or the fish could come undone. I just never got this feeling. Once again, this is why it makes for a good party game. You should think of this game as a trout farm. Someone takes you to the fish, baits the hook, and lets you crank in a fish that has no chance of getting away.


I have played fishing games on the PC, N64, PSX and now Dreamcast and without a doubt, this game has the coolest, most realistic looking fish out of all of them. The game runs in a beautiful high-resolution mode and just looks incredible. Before you cast, you see behind the fisherman but after you cast, the camera switches to an underwater view of your lure and the fish close by. One of the coolest things you will ever see in a fishing game is when a huge bass swims directly towards your screen and opens its mouth and swallows the lure. Talk about awesome. There are occasional occurrence of slowdown that hamper the game but it never really gets to the point of interfering with the gameplay.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for a fun party type game, I suggest picking up a fishing controller along with this game. You will have some good, quick fun. If you are looking for a deep, long lasting fishing experience, you will be disappointed. I do suggest at least a rental just to see the cool graphics and the fish alone are worth the five dollar rental fee. Just don't expect any long fights, that is for sure.


The sun rises across the lake; the fetid scent of bait wafts though the air. You eye up your competition: a motley gang of champion beer drinkers, underarm deodorant testers and male model rejects. The fishing derby is about to begin and all you can think about is -- why am I fishing on my computer when I could be doing the real thing AND getting a tan (God forbid, some exercise)?

Here's the overview of Sega Bass Fishing: catch fish. Ta-da! If that overview makes you want to buy this game, then for heaven's sake, read this review first.

Gameplay, Controls, Interface

Sega Bass Fishing is a PC port from the far superior Dreamcast version. Apparently when someone at Sega said, "Hey, let's put our relatively fun game Sega Bass Fishing on the PC!" they forgot one key ingredient. Fun. Like its superior cousin, the whole appeal of Sega Bass Fishing in the arcade and on the Dreamcast was the use of a gaming peripheral, namely the digital fishing rod. Here, you use the keyboard and its unchangeable default settings. No vibration, no swinging your arms back and forth like the "real" version. Nope, here ya just reel it in using the Q, W and E buttons and occasionally pressing the direction buttons when it's necessary. The gameplay can best be described as boring and uneventful.

As you start, you can select the area you want to fish, then you can select the type of lure you want to use. Each lure has a specific action, which you control by doing the required movement. Some lures must constantly be reeled in while others bounce along the bottom of the lake. Catching more and more fish will unlock other lures that you can play with.

At the beginning of each stage you get a weight requirement of total fish caught, and you must catch that amount in the allotted time. Once you do, it opens up the next area. Ultimately you want to make it to the fourth hidden area where, rumor has it, the really big ones live. My personal best: 20 lbs., 15 oz. Not bad for a bigmouth bass caught in my living room. While reeling in "the big one," pay attention to the line strength gauge on the right of the screen. It tells you when to back off and not fight the fish so much; otherwise the line will snap and the fish will get away.

Sega Bass Fishing also has a tournament mode where you play in a fishing derby for an entire (time augmented) day in an attempt to have the largest total weight of fish. At the end of the day your total amount will be stacked up against the computer competitors. The gameplay was essentially the same since you can unrealistically catch a fish every one and a half minutes; however, this time you need to pay attention to your lures a bit more since the fish A.I. is jacked up a (small) notch.


Sega Bass Fishing is a console or arcade type game. It really doesn't belong on the PC. It seems to me every time a game is ported over from a console that it just doesn't look right. White streaks zip across the screen and the pixelation seems strained. Watching the title screen come up just makes you wish you were playing this game on the Dreamcast. The graphics are bland and unattractive.


Again, the game just plain doesn't do it for me. What little noise there is, is pedestrian. The sound was so simple and unnecessary that I turned it down three minutes into the game.

System Requirements

Required: PII 300 MHz, Windows 95/98/ME, 32 MB RAM, 150 MB hard drive, 8X CD-ROM drive, DirectX 7.0a compatible video card with 4 MB VRAM

Recommended: PIII 400 MHz, 64 MB RAM, 12X CD-ROM drive or higher, DirectX 7.0a compatible video card with 16 MB VRAM


The documentation of this game is this tiny little flap of information that reminded me of two toilet paper squares.

Bottom Line

I beat this game's arcade mode the very first time I played, in under 25 minutes. The challenge simply does not exist. Not only does the gameplay stink, but the simple fact that you can beat it in less time than it takes an episode of The Simpsons to unfold (which would be a better way to spend a half hour) tells me that Sega ports just don't cut the mustard.

I cannot with any shadow of a doubt recommend this game. If you must play it, play the Dreamcast version with the digital reel; at least then you'll have some fun. Better yet, go out and fish for real.

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