A Calm, Fun Fishing Adventure
The reason most of us play video games is to escape reality. We want to find a pocket of peace where we can relax, enjoy and forget our responsibilities for a while. Infinite Dreams understands this and they have created the perfect escape with Creatures of the Deep.
A calm yet competitive adventure, Creatures of the Deep invites players to sail the seas catching fish and zoning out to the hypnotic rhythms of its soundtrack. These two features would be enough to satisfy as there is an intensity and excitement to catching fish. After casting my line, I flutter with anticipation for the red bobber to be pulled under. Creatures of the Deep does a wonderful job of building tension without ruining its tranquil atmosphere.
Each fish has a unique way of testing your line and patience. The bobber dips below the water’s surface with each nibble. Depending on the size of your prospective catch, the bobber will dip and resurface in varying patterns. Smaller fish snag the line sooner than larger fish. Rarer fish will provide a longer delay between the dip of your bobber and its resurfacing. Pull the line too soon, the fish scuttles off. Pull the line too late and you will miss your opportunity for a prized catch.
Though simplistic in its design, the tension this dance creates left me tapping my screen too soon multiple times. The heartbreak of missing a catch makes reeling in your target all the sweeter. This feeling is doubled when it comes to catching rare fish and monsters hiding deep below the tranquil waters.
More Than a Nautical Jaunt
Though sailing and fishing is enough to keep me hooked, Creatures of the Deep provides a series of interesting characters to meet who offer straightforward missions. Upon entering Paradise Island, I came across Cap’n Slappy, a jovial old man who needed my help catching a treasure chest. At first I assumed this would be filler side-content to expand the game. After completing the mission, I came to realize my interactions with Slappy would lead to something bigger.
Slappy works as a guide to learning the game, but he is also the first character to provide you with details on catching your first monster of the sea. After completing all of Slappy’s requests, he provided me with information on catching my first monster: a shark named Shredder.
Creatures of the Deep has a sensible hierarchy of fish. Common fish are fun, easy catches that make for a calm way to pass the time. Rare fish are more difficult and require filling a meter to find the sweet spot for reeling them in. Then, there are the monsters.
Monsters are extremely rare fish that require jumping through a few hoops before they are eligible to be caught. Each map in Creatures of the Deep has a primary character that introduces you to the location. This is also the character you will perform missions for before being able to catch that area’s monster.
Much like rare fish, monsters have a meter to fill with a sweet spot for reeling them in. However, the sweet spot moves up and down the meter making the catch more difficult and ramping up the tension. This process makes it easy for a catch to get away. Fill the meter too high, and your line will snap. Not filling the meter enough will cause the fish to escape. The devastating nature of knowing you have hooked a monster only for it to get away will crush any gamer, but it makes catching the beast all the more sublime.
Your Very Own Island
Outside of catching fish and completing side missions for the cast of characters, I spent a lot of time at camp. Functioning as a homebase, your camp is where you sell the fish and trash you’ve caught, customize your boat, collect trophies of special catches and more. With only five slots in your inventory, you will be spending a lot of time in camp to make room for more catches. This can be tedious at times, but the loading screen is fast with a funny animation. The biggest downfall with this need for travel is the cost. A helicopter takes you to camp and back to whichever map you choose. It is free to travel to camp, but it costs 100 gold to travel to any map. Given the amount of times you will need to travel, this cost stacks up.
The cost of travel becomes more problematic when you realize what it takes to purchase a fishing pole. The camp store offers a variety of fishing poles which become available as the player levels up. The base option costs 1000 gold, while the pole specific for monsters costs 3000. These are astronomical amounts when considering some of the largest fish, outside of monsters, are worth around 100 gold each.
The store also offers bait, a lucky charm and maps to each region. These items cost gems as opposed to gold. Gems are even more difficult to come by than gold. Gems can be collected by completing daily objectives and reaching certain milestones. They are a hot commodity. I found myself hoarding them as I wasn’t sure how long it would take me to accrue more.
Finally, the player can upgrade their camp by building new sections such as a boat landing used for upgrading your vessel and a trophy room for collecting fish. In order to build each section, I collected wood found around the world. This is a tedious, draining process that needs an update. Wood can only be found floating in the waters of camp and the various maps. Each area houses only two available wood planks per day. However, each camp upgrade costs up to 30 wood to build. Unless the player unlocks all four areas, which is costly, it will take them several days to finish collecting enough wood.
On top of that, once enough wood is collected, the player needs to spend upwards of 1000 or more gold to complete construction. Most annoyingly, once the wood and gold are squared away, the upgrade takes a day to be built. It can take up to a week just to complete one upgrade, and the grind is not worth the result. This brings me to my primary complaint with the game. Some of the main components for obtaining a sense of progress requires a lot of time to complete. Not even microtransactions can help speed up the process as you cannot buy wood or a shorter timeframe for building upgrades.
The Final Word
There is so much to enjoy in Creatures of the Deep. From its serene atmosphere to its exciting gameplay, Creatures is one of my favorite mobile games of the year so far. The elongated timeline for upgrades along with the persistent crashes are annoying but not game breaking. I highly suggest giving this game a try. It’s a beautiful and tranquil adventure that is sure to appease anyone looking for a relaxing, fun time.
Is It Hardcore?
Creatures of the Deep is a relaxing and fun adventure fishing game that knows how to keep the player entertained. With a soothing soundtrack and serene locations, players will be hooked anticipating their next big catch.