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fishy Review

Official Score

Overall - 70%

70%

The core elements of fishy are sound, but this visual novel is far too short for its own good. Finding one’s confidence makes for a great tale, but players just don’t have enough time to connect in this aquatic world.

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A tale of friends, enemies, acceptance, and monsters, I Choose Paradise’s fishy transports players to an aquarium where things are not all that they seem. Should players RSVP to this one-of-a-kind birthday party, or should players just stay home?

fishy Review

It’s Monica’s 14th’s birthday party, and you’re invited. Known to go big or go home, she’s having her huge bash at an aquarium where she and her friends have free reign. Enter the player, a self-named character that feels a little out of her element. Though their mutual friend Misha is attending as well, they don’t really have a thing for the sea and are somewhat awkward around other people. When paired with her prosthetic limb, she feels a little insecure as to her place in life.

Things get that much more odd when she starts to explore what the aquarium has to offer. Tapping on the glass makes her feel like everything’s crashing around here, while creatures from its restricted elements are feeding her disingenuous information. What is real, and what is merely in her head? That’s up for players to find out.

Players will also be able to make a number of different choices along the way, in true visual novel fashion. Most of the time the two results are the same thing slightly worded differently, but this is still a welcome addition nonetheless. Just don’t be surprised if one’s actions don’t make a huge impact – this is more of a one-and-done type of game.

While fishy merely dips into the supernatural, it manages to tell a compelling tale that will have players yearning to figure out what will happen next. A lot of it is typical teenage drama, but that is no doubt the intention. Seeing a snot-nosed kid act like a punk might be a turn-off for some, but it is an intentional decision that helps the main character really grow. As things progress, players will be able to take a journey inward to see exactly where they stand in life, and ultimately face the fears that they might have in the world.

It’s just a shame that this title is so short. We were able to finish fishy in just over a half hour, which is far too short for any sort of serious character development. What is here is great, but this brevity prevents players from really connecting with any of its characters or its world.

This is unfortunate too, as its world has been well-designed. The characters all have a fair amount of detail to them, and the aquarium itself has a number of flourishes that work well in this medium.

The core elements of fishy are sound, but this visual novel is far too short for its own good. Finding one’s confidence makes for a great tale, but players just don’t have enough time to connect in this aquatic world.

This review of fishy was done on the PC. The game was freely downloaded.
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Casey Scheld

Drawn to the underground side of gaming, Casey helps the lesser known heroes of video games. If you’ve never heard of it, he’s mastered it.
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