What’s That Fishy Smell? –
Despite this series having a long and respected gaming history, Super Black Bass 3D is an unplayable and incomplete mess. It takes too much time to do anything from navigating menus to reeling in your line, has little to no sense of accomplishment, has hideous visuals, and doesn’t even function properly on a technical level.
Before jumping into free play or tournament mode, the game asks if you would like to play the tutorial. It is highly advised not to accept this polite offer as there is a game crashing error that will not allow you to continue. Within a minute or two, the game tries to make sense of its awkward motion controls by telling the player to flick the 3DS hardware as if casting a line. But after about 25 minutes of wrist flicking in every direction possible, the game refused to let me pass. Making matters worse, the game basically just says “umm, no, you’re doing it wrong. Try it again,” instead of actually telling you what the hell to do. Wasting minutes of my life with this full retail product left a sour taste in my mouth and would have immediately traded in this piece of garbage to Gamestop if I wasn’t inclined to play more for this review. When you cannot get through the opening tutorial, it is a safe bet to say that this game has some pretty severe issues. I tried flicking up, down, in, out, softly, forcefully, flipping, scoping, twisting, rotating, and I even tried tossing my 3DS just to make sure. Nope. Nothing. And to be honest, the 3DS screen is not designed for such rigorous activity because the top screen doesn’t firmly lock in place when opened. Playing this bass fishing sim almost broke my 3DS, literally.
After a complete hardware restart, I opted to bypass the broken tutorial system and get into the meat of the game. But fishing using the 3DS’s motion controls is just as exciting as it sounds; it is tedious and just doesn’t work. Making matters worse is the “3D” portion listed in the game’s title. There is no way to play this game in 3D when flicking the system back and forth because of the limited viewing sweet spot, even though the 3D effect is terrible to begin with. But this doesn’t really matter anyway because the graphics retain the visual quality of an early GBA title. The human avatars look like inbred monsters infected with a face fungus and the water you fish in doesn’t even move, splash or make bubbles. This has to be one of the worst looking 3DS games available. One Crimson Shroud battle has more animation than this entire game.
After repeatedly casting my line for about 20 minutes, I finally managed to actually get a bite on my line. Then after a 5 minute back-and-forth battle to reel in this small fish, my line snapped without warning. I have not been this frustrated with a game since Ghosts and Goblins, but at least that game functioned properly.
Super Black Bass 3D is currently the top contender for Worst Game of the Year award.
Not As Good As: Sega Bass Fishing
Also Try: eating a bucket of live bait
Wait For It: Legend of River King (3DS Virtual Console)