‘Radical Fishing’ And The Case Of The App Store Clone

The iOS App Store has democratized game development, allowing a tiny team of people to create a game capable of reaching a massive audience. And, more importantly, that tiny team can make a boatload of money if the game’s a hit. Unfortunately, the ease of developing for the App Store has resulted in people taking shortcuts in game design, stealing elements, entire game concepts and even artwork, as was the case with “The Blocks Cometh.”

Some of these rip-off projects have been shut down, but the line between original, borrowed and flat-out stolen games is becoming harder to delineate by the day. Every once in a while, though, it’s pretty clear that wrong-doing has been done. Case in point: “Ninja Fishing.”

Vlambeer is an independent developer based in Holland. They were the folks behind the delightful “Super Crate Box,” but before that they made a game called “Radical Fishing.” It’s safe to say I’ve ever played anything like it. You can try it here or watch a gameplay trailer below.

Embedded from player.vimeo.com.

The core concept of “Radical Fishing”: You are a fisherman. You must guide your hook as deep as you can without hitting a fish. Once you reach a certain depth, you can sink the hook into a fish and the line will reel up. As the line is reeling, you can pick up more fish along the way, until you’re literally reeling in 20 or 30 at a time, including eels, seahorses and turtles. Once the fish are dragged back to your boat they are ceremoniously hurled into the air, where you must blast them with guns. Every fish you blast nets you money which can be spent on upgrading your gear, thus letting you go deeper to catch more valuable fish.

Yesterday, two iOS developers, Gamenauts and Menara Games, a showed off a trailer for their upcoming game, “Ninja Fishing.” Give it a watch:

Embedded from www.youtube.com.

The core concept of “Ninja Fishing”: You are a ninja fisherman. You must guide your hook as deep as you can without hitting a fish. Once you reach a certain depth, you can sink the hook into a fish and the line will reel up. As the line is reeling, you can pick up more fish along the way, until you’re literally reeling in 20 or 30 at a time, including eels, seahorses and turtles. Once the fish are dragged back to your boat they are ceremoniously hurled into the air, where you must slash them with a sword. Every fish you slash nets you money which can be spent on upgrading your gear, thus letting you go deeper to catch more valuable fish.

As unfortunate as this is, it gets even worse, as Vlambeer was secretly working on a sequel to their original concept, titled “Ridiculous Fishing,” which would release on iOS. Basically “Ninja Fishing” would not only steal the original Flash game’s concept, but also steal business from the upcoming sequel.

Moral of the story: If you want to support creative, independent developers, avoid “Ninja Fishing” and wait for “Ridiculous Fishing.” The only way to discourage this sort of action is to hurt copycats in the wallet, so make your voice heard.