Kawa no Nushi Tsuri 2 was released in Japan for the Super Famicom on April 28, 1995. The game was developed by PACK-IN-VIDEO, and is part of a much larger series of games, including Umi no Nushi Tsuri (sea fishing, as opposed to river fishing).
Fishing Adventure RPG
Kawa no Nushi Tsuri 2 is basically a fishing adventure style game with RPG elements. The menu system is similar to that of Dragon Warrior, which requires you to open up a menu window, go through a list of actions and commands, and select what you want to do. Fortunately, you don’t have to open the menu every time you want to talk to someone or when you stop to fish, so all in all it’s decently efficient.
Interestingly enough, this game also has random encounters, and employs a turn-based battle system. Luckily, the meat of the game is spent fishing as opposed to fighting off snakes, centipedes and bears.
The fishing mechanic takes a little while to figure out, because there are no status bars or health bars to indicate how close you are to catching a fish. Basically, you have to let the fish run, and when it stops, you can pull it in a little ways. When the fish begins to slow down, you have to let it run again. Repeat this process, and eventually the fish can be brought to the surface.
What’s simply amazing about this game is the variety of gear available to you. You can bait fish, lure fish, and even fly fish. You can select the type of float you want to use, the bait, lures, and even flies. There are a total of 66 different fish you can catch in the game, and an additional six river creatures (like frogs) you can catch for experience. It’s simply mind boggling how jam packed this game is.
For Super Famicom (SNES), the graphics look quite colorful and stunning. The character of each fish is captured incredibly well, and while the backgrounds could have been improved, it’s still amazing that they were able to do so much.
Uniquely Japanese is the only way to describe it. Most of the music is either relaxing or upbeat and pleasant, and fits the mood of the game quite well. There is no music while you are fishing, and that could be a bit of a downside, but it does make it rather obvious when you’re fishing vs. when you’re walking around the map.
Six Areas to Explore
There are a total of six different stages to explore and fish in-game. You begin by fishing in the mountain creeks, and move on to lakes, rivers, and finally the mouth of the river. You have to find the cave in any given stage to move on to the next one, and sometimes this is easier said than done. Fortunately, if you’ve bought a compass, it will tell you where to go.
An Open Ended Adventure
When you set out on your journey, your goal is to catch the river king (Japanese Lates). While there is an “ending” of sorts when you catch the Lates, your adventure doesn’t need to stop there. You can continue fishing for all 66 different types of fish (thereby completing your fishing notebook), and even fish for the record size of every fish. This could take awhile.
I had a lot of fun with this game. I don’t think it’s everyone’s cup of tea, but you can tell that the people at PACK-IN-VIDEO really love fishing. They could have just released another fishing game, but instead we got a game packed to the rafters with incredible content. I don’t think they ever released this particular game in North America, but I think it would be worth checking out other games in this series.
As it turns out, Legend on the River King 2 is available on the Game Boy Color. I wish I had known that a lot sooner.