Last Fish in Review – If Fox Vs. Duck Had A Sequel

Up until now, Fox Vs Duck (TMA Review) has held the number one position in my mind as far as artistic awesomeness goes. It seems we have a contender in the form of Last Fish. In fact, if it weren’t for the fact that they came from different developers, I’d be inclined to consider Last Fish the “spiritual” successor to Fox Vs. Duck. Regardless, Last Fish is proof that games can be artistic, and more importantly that artistic games can be fun.

You are a white fish that lights up the darkness of the pond you inhabit. Toxic goo floats along in the pond – avoid it by tilting the iDevice to keep yourself from loosing health. Consume the white balls of food to gain health. Sometimes the water itself is toxic, in which case you can only hope to consume food more quickly than the water consumes you. Eventually black fish – the shadow fish – will enter the pond. They are toxic and will follow you. There is no way to get rid of them, so just avoid them at all costs.

In “levels” mode you play through a series of stages with concrete goals. In one level you simply might need to survive for a specified amount of time, whereas in the next level you’ll need to collect a certain number of rings. Once you’ve completed a level you will earn up to three stars which are determined based on some combination of goal completion, level of health, and time taken to complete the level. You can always replay a level if you don’t earn three stars, but unfortunately you are never given guidelines of what to do in order to earn the maximum number of stars.

In arcade mode your goal is simply to last as long as you can. There are multiple stages to arcade mode, and each one requires you to score so many stars from the previously unlocked levels. The same perils await you in arcade mode as in “levels” mode, though I haven’t seen any rings to collect yet in arcade mode, so that feature might not be available. There are achievements to be earned through OpenFeint, but I’m not sure they’re working as I’ve already earned some of them and they aren’t registering as being earned.

The visuals are beautiful in their simplicity. Your fish is a mere white silhouette whose glow lights up the board based on how much health you have. The bad guys are simple black balls, and the bad fish are black silhouettes. The only real special effects are when the white food pellets fade in and out, but there’s something about the look of the game that doesn’t really demand any sort of special effects.

The sound effects are fairly simple as well. The main noises are a sparkling sound when you pick up food or rings and a grinding noise when you hit something you shouldn’t. The music is very subdued and calming, almost belying the potential action to be found in some of the levels.

Last Fish was a pleasant surprise for me. I didn’t really know anything about the game going into it, but I’m certainly glad I gave it a try. The game for the most part is very relaxing, though given enough goo and dark fish in the same level, especially if the water is toxic, the action can get a bit crazy. This is a dodge ‘em game with a purpose and artistic flair, and shouldn’t be missed by the causal action gamer or anyone that appreciates something a bit different.

App Summary
Title: Last FishDeveloper: Pyrosphere
Reviewed Ver:1.0Min OS Req:3.0
Price:$0.99App Size:9.1 MB
  • Nice variety of goals
  • Cool artistic visuals
  • Relaxing music
  • Precise tilt controls
  • OpenFeint achievements didn’t seem to work

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  • http://twitter.com/james_ingham James Ingham

    OpenFeint is having some serious issues at the moment. Don’t think it’s the games fault!

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