From Train Lines To Fishing Lines: Dovetail Games Fishing

In Britain, we’re particularly good at ignoring the functional reason for an activity or object so that we can enjoy it as a hobby. Stamps come to mind. We’re not alone in this, of course, but I like to think we’re the best at it. Olympic level trivialisers and meanderers. Dovetail Games, lords of the Train Simulator series, are masters of this art. Trains go from point A to point B, but some people just enjoy being on trains for the the sake of it, or even standing on a platform to spot a particular engine and jot down notes.

Now, in their first step off the beaten tracks, Dovetail are exploring another activity separated from its original function. Fishing for pleasure rather than for supper.

Let’s get this straight. We’re watching the trailer, which is revealed to be in the game world, which means that we are all actually fish having a peculiar dream.

No point in skirting around the issue so I’ll just come right out and say it – I could fall in love with the right fishing game. I’ve never ‘gone fishin” in real life because I have the patience of a steroid-infused Roadrunner, am a midge magnet and would probably feel like a rotter dragging a living thing out of the place where it can breathe. Even if I was going to throw it back in again afterwards, I’d feel uncomfortable – it’d be like dunking someone’s head in a pond until they had a lungful of water and then leaving them on the bank to dry off in the sun. Except with more hooks.

I’d be fine with digital fishing though. No midges, no possible pain or death, and I’ve got movies and books aplenty around to keep me occupied during the waiting. They’ll bite more often too, in the digital realm, because even a slow-paced game recognises the need to stimulate players at least once every ten minutes to make sure they don’t decide to watch Celebrity Masterchef while wanking themselves unconscious instead.

Maybe Dovetail Games Fishing can save us from that fate?

Former EA executives Rob O’Farrell and Chris Roberts are leading the development of Dovetail Games Fishing. Their vision is to create a fishing simulation which, utilising the revolutionary Unreal Engine 4® architecture will recreate in breath-taking detail the immersive and engaging experience of angling for leisure or competition. Dovetail Games are also laying the foundation to grow the Train Simulator franchise using this exciting technology in the future.

In Dovetail Games Fishing, players will tackle every step in the fishing experience, starting with the selection of equipment and rigs based on the type of fishing and objective. Players will then survey their preferred location then take to the waters edge to prepare their gear. Using an intuitive new casting and reeling mechanism termed ‘Total Cast Control’, players can then test their skills by finding, attracting, catching and landing the fish.

Initially specialising in fishing for carp, Dovetail Games Fishing will quickly expand to include a multitude of popular fishing types, including bass and fly-fishing, across a variety of locations around the world.

The promise of future expansion is unnerving given the amount of Train Simulator DLC that exists and is carp fishing enough to start with? I don’t know. I need a fishing expert. Izaak Walton’s The Compleat Angler says this: “The Carp is the queen of rivers; a stately, a good, and a very subtil fish; that was not at first bred, nor hath been long in England, but is now naturalised.”

A game about killing the queen. It should be out later this year.


  1. CookPassBabtridge says:

    Fine, I am getting old, but I would actually prefer to just go.. you know, fishing. This is pressing my clowns-nose shaped ‘daft’ button, which makes a bottom toot sound.

    But what do I know. Maybe it will be the next ETS2

    • Ingall says:

      I’m kind of the same. I like to play games that let me do things I can’t normally do in the real world (at least not without some consequences) like fly spaceships, command armies, drive tanks and shoot people in the face. If I want to go fishing, I’ll put on some rubber pants and go fishing.

      Having said that, if it’s any good I’m sure it will be very popular.

    • Ninzyavr says:

      I can see myself playing this in multiplayer with a good friend who lives about a thousand miles away. Just turn on Skype, find a nice spot on the lake and calmly talk about something. You don’t have that option while playing castle crashers or borderlands. So if the game is any good, I’m in.

    • BobsLawnService says:

      I agree with you. The pleasure of a truck/train/taxi simulator is because it simulates an activity that most of us can’t do in real life.

      Fishing is completely different. For the investment of two or three PC games you can get the kit to take part and actually get to enjoy what fishing is about – Getting out to the great outdoors, fresh air, peace, relaxation and the tactile thrill of feeling your quarry at the end of a line after you have outwitted it.

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        “Outwitting fish” is the absolute best way I have ever heard this pasttime described.

  2. Zenicetus says:

    I dunno… this is a sport that with only a few exceptions (like sight-casting for Bonefish in shallow Caribbean waters) is based purely on the feel of the line under your finger, so you know if something is nibbling and when the timing is right to set the hook.

    It seems spectacularly unsuited to a visual medium like videogames. I know there have been fishing sims in the past, but IIRC they haven’t been all that successful, and I doubt that dressing it up with fancy graphics from the Unreal Engine 4® are going to do much for a sport that is pursued mostly blind.

  3. Lion Heart says:

    well, i guess its a niche idea but does it really need to exist

  4. P.Funk says:

    Train simulator both interests and depresses me. It has by far on average the DLC with the least value per dollar spent I can think of. You’ll drop $40 for a single locomotive that MAY have 5-10 prebuilt scenarios to play, 2 of which might just be 5 minutes long to show you how to press buttons. Several don’t even have scenarios and are what they adorably call “Free Drive available” which basically means someone actually went into the obtuse mission editor and made it so that you could load up a single general scenario and pull cars to nowhere for no purpose (a train without a purpose?).

    With this fishing simulator perhaps it’ll look more like The Hunter which has a slightly less exhausting DLC scheme, one which from what I can tell only costs you about $10 a month to play as long as long as you only want to hunt every animal but don’t want to actually own every gun and piece of kit.

  5. P-Dizzle says:

    Well they made the Train Sims well enough so I’m sure they can handle a fishing sim. Quite looking forward to seeing some actual gameplay footage.

    • Kittim says:

      Check out the reviews on the Train Sim 2014 Steam store page.
      Go back far enough and you’ll get some Recommended reviews, now? Not Recommended, Not Recommended, Not Recommended, Not Recommended, Not Recommended, Not Recommended, Not Recommended.

      I first purchased it back when it was EA Rail Simulator, then Kuju Rail Simulator and finally gave up on it just before TS2014 came out. I shudder to think how much I spent on DLC and addons, over $2000 I think.

      What pissed me off was Dovetail/Kuju not addressing bugs that had been in the program since the beginning. Glaring physics errors, route pathing problems, the list goes on. To this day there’s things that MS Train Sim did that TS2014 can’t.

      Dovetail’s PR are a joke too, post anything even slightly negative on their Facebook page and it’s deleted. They completely wiped the Steam forums because too many people were complaining.
      They flagged negative reviews as “Off Topic” on Steam
      (link to

      I would treat whatever this company releases with a healthy dose of suspicion, buyer beware.

  6. mrmalodor says:

    So basically it will ship with like 4 kinds of fish. The fish DLCs will contain one fish and one lure each and cost 10 euros apiece. New lakes will cost 30 euros apiece.

    • Daemoneyes says:

      You forgot the premium bait, 1.99€ per piece.
      Boats, 14.99€ per.
      Clothing from 2.99 to 24.99€
      And the Ultimative DLC, Dynamite. Taking fishing to a whole new level! (only 39.99€ ;) )

  7. quietone says:

    Bass Masters Classic for the SNES was one of my favorite ETS2 like games before, you know, ETS2.

    There were a bunch of fishing games back in the day, and they all also boasted “many locations”, “many kinds of fishes” and “revolutionary cast control”

    They didn’t.

    But hey, I will probably get this one too! I am an incurable optimist when it comes to games about being still watching some little float for hours. Ahhh the fun, the endless, almost unbearable fun!

  8. carlo says:

    This being a Chris Roberts game, I hope for beautiful, exclusive, overpowered fishing rods I can buy for top dollars months or even years before the game is released. I also look forward to the announcement of a Fishing Shack module which will allow me to walk around in a painstakingly rendered house, looking at said rods and maybe enticing pictures of fish.

    Wrong Chris Roberts, perhaps, but a man can dream.

  9. golem09 says:

    Is this a Vanishing of Ethan Carter spinoff?

  10. alw says:

    Looks like carp.

    • CookPassBabtridge says:

      Fish puns? Good cod lets please not go there

      • Ravenholme says:

        Agreed, there is a time and a plaice for them.

        • BooleanBob says:

          Not even fishing, but pretend fishing? I knew gaming were onanistic time-wasting, but this is a whole new level of baiter-mastery.

  11. kapone says:

    Features the game must have for an authentic experience:
    – Spending half an hour untangling lines
    – Losing your brand new lure to a snag on the first cast
    – Getting stupidly drunk

  12. psulli says:

    There was a silly study recently that got attention about “Humans prefer an electric shock to being left alone with their thoughts”. I don’t know why this game suddenly made me think of it.