Gone Fishin'

I reported a while back about how much I didn’t like fishing, and how my druid (my main character from the beginning of Vanilla WoW) had a terribly low fishing skill.

It took me years of fishing on and off to get to the 180 fishing skill I had in March. Actually, I think I ran around with a fishing skill below 50 for most of the Pre-BC days, and didn’t even make the push to 180 until the achievement system came out which rewarded me for fishing. However, I really think they made some great improvements to fishing in the 3.1 patch that convinced me to go back and work on my fishing some more.

gone-fishinWhat was that change? I can now fish anywhere, even with a terrible fishing skill. I could fish in the dalaran sewers or pond. I can fish anywhere in Northrend. I can fish while waiting for raids to start, without having to worry about traveling back from Stormwind. I can also pick up useful fish while I’m skilling up, since I can fish in the schools in Northrend instead of being stuck in old areas of Azeroth & low level zones.

What really made the difference was being able to do fishing dailies with horribly low skill ratings.

While I haven’t gotten any of the fishing pets yet, I have gotten some gold from the vendor-junk, stuff from the dalies (including a Porcelian Bell) and selling off fish that I catch. I’m still hoping that one day I’ll manage to get one of the more rare items (ie. pets or gems, but mostly I just want pets) from either the Northrend or Outlands fishing dalies.

I’m all decked out now with about a 350 fishing skill. I picked up the [Mastercraft Kalu'ak Fishing Pole] and a [Weather-Beaten Fishing Hat]. With my skill still not being that high, I’m also using appropriate lures as needed, to reduce the amount of vendor junk I get in the higher level areas. I also have a very [Unsual Compass] if I’m really in desperate need of entertainment…

I’m not trying to make a mad-dash to the skill cap for fishing, and I’m not spending hours of mindless grinding. It will probably take me another month or so to get up to the skill cap. I’m finishing my dalies and maybe spending a little extra time getting a few skill points each day, until I just can’t stand fishing anymore. Some of it is that I’m just bored with most of the other dalies (even the Argent Tournament stuff I’m not that excited about). So, I got bored enough that fishing actually seems fun. I’m a little worried, but that also means that in some ways, the changes they made in 3.1 actually worked for me.

I also worked out a fun game with my mini-tree pet when I was first getting myself into fishing. I would fish when my tree friend was either dancing or standing around, and when it fell asleep, I’d take a short break to cruise the internet (checking e-mail, forums, blogs, whatever). Then, when it woke up from it’s nap, I’d go back to fishing. I’ve also been fishing while listening to podcasts and such (fishing is still a little boring if I try to sit there for longer periods of time).

I have some problems trying to fish from schools, since they’re so tiny, but I’m starting to get the hang of how these things work, and it actually adds a tiny bit of challenge to the whole process.

Anyway, what do you guys think of the new fishing changes? I’m sure most people already hit the fishing cap long before 3.1, but I’d like to hear what you guys have to say about fishing now.

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14 Comments

  1. Poras
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 4:09 am | Permalink

    i’ve had my fishing capped with each expansion (i’m kind of a skill whore), however, i think the changes to fishing are amazing. most of my guild agrees that not having to go back to azeroth or outlands to lvl it up is a huge plus. and as you noted, this change allows anybody to participate in the fishing dailies to make a little extra coin :D

    i’m waiting on fishing pets too, liss, as well as the turtle mount… my one friend got the turtle mount on his first cast after 3.1 went live… i cried a little.

    Poras
    Officer/Resto Druid
    -Pango Honoratus-

  2. Reemar
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 4:27 am | Permalink

    I’ve started doing the same. Only managed to get to about 50 skill level by the time I hit level 80.

    But since getting into the Dailies I’ve been enjoying leveling my fishing a few skill points at a time.

    Still waiting for the Fishing Hat, but got my crab pet on my second turn in :)

  3. Posted June 2, 2009 at 6:15 am | Permalink

    It’s also fantastic that I can fish on my lowbie while waiting for boats, or anytime I have a few minutes to kill, without worrying if I have the appropriate skill.

    No more frustrating chains of “your fish got away” over and over.

    I loved fishing before – I love it even more, now!

  4. Posted June 2, 2009 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    I leveled fishing on my first character in vanilla wow when you could catch level 300 fish on the north side of Darkshore where you could only swim, not run.

    It came in handy again as I was the only person in my guild immediately able to fish up Gahz’ranka in ZG for the awesome Nat Pagle’s Fish Terminator and Foror’s Eyepatch!

    Now, I still enjoy fishing, am able to make raid wide useful food with Fish Feasts, and look pimp as all get-out in my hat(s). I also won the tournament in BB several times.

    The fishing dailies just increased the allure of fishing for me. I fish while I talk on the phone to folks. What a great mindless way to waste time while you hear about Grandma’s back or Grandpa’s leg.

  5. Kayeri
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    The changes are definitely positive, more people are now leveling fishing than ever before and enjoying the rewards that come their way as a result. Kayeri also already had maxed out fishing, as she enjoys being as self-sufficient as possible. My rogue, Rhiane, couldnt care less about fishing although I require her to carry a pole in case the urge ever takes her… (I dont see it happening soon, either…)

    My only wishes are that Kayeri would fish up the strand crawler and the turtle mount… :)

  6. Posted June 2, 2009 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    This reminds me too much of why of Teeth and Claws said he was hanging it up and leaving WoW: the game’s becoming too accessible, imo. He’s not the only druid that’s said see ya to WoW recently either (a big about it here).

    There’s a problem with ghettoizing the old world as well as cheapening the work behind the sense of achievement those that truly grinded through parts of the game have “earned”. This change in fishing reminds me a bit too much of the reasoning behind dailies. Make the game easier and bribe your players with a little virtual cash. Good thing WoW learned the lesson from Ultima Online that a closed economic system doesn’t work, and went straight to manipulating the virtual market in an attempt to maximize reality cash. (I’d say there’s nothing inherently wrong with that, but then Jonathan Blow apparently thinks there is. Check the RPG Vault article I linked earlier, and Teeth and Claws is talking the topic up some more now too.)

    And seriously (insert smilies! I kid Hasselhoff, I kid!), there’s no excuse for a druid not to level up fishing the “right way”. Moonglade teleport and a few casts before sign-offs, anyone?! ;^)

  7. Posted June 2, 2009 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    I never really minded fishing before, but it is nice now that you can fish anywhere at any level. I always thought the fishing level requirements were kinda silly, but fishing and cooking leveled so well together that I just sorta did it. I also hated they way I looked casting as a cow, so I lived off of deviate fish in Vanilla WoW!

  8. Posted June 2, 2009 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    My hatred of fishing goes way back. I am seriously considering leveling it now with my warrior, since I can hang out somewhere and fish while waiting for a OS run or whatever to start up.

    http://parttimedruid.com/2008/07/24/confessions-of-a-former-anti-fish-ite/

    To this day, my Priest is the only one with significant skill, and he’s around 315 if I remember right. That was TOUGH!

  9. scaresome
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    In response to making the game too easy and bribing players: the point was to make it so one did not have to grind to make money. No more hours on the Elemental Plateau competing for fire motes. Grinding sucked … big time.

    Now, we make money in a bit more entertaining way than waiting for a re-spawn: we have dailies. A ton of them.

    The original players who feel their accompishments are cheapened because we don’t have to spend three hours a day grinding mats to sell in the AH or to put together an end-game enchant; well, maybe they should leave. The game has changed and improved.

    I began to enjoy fishing when I got stuck on some long telephone calls. It was mindless. I soon began to enjoy a huge part of the game that I had missed and, better yet, began making gold for my efforts. Fishing and cooking pay quite well.

    The bonus (for me) was that I could start the fishing dailies at level 65 (as I recall) and begin building Kirin Tor rep. Selling cooked Manta Ray was a nice boost before I could really stay alive in Northrend. Today: offering Fish Feast in a pug still is unusual when, in fact, it should be that I am not the only one offering that group buff.

    I like fishing when there is a reward. I regret the time I spent getting the Dalaran Flipping Coin but don’t regret the Giant Sewer Rat. Hey, I was just talking with my Mom!

  10. Posted June 2, 2009 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    I may have overlinked in the last post, but to the comment…

    The original players who feel their accompishments are cheapened because we don’t have to spend three hours a day grinding mats to sell in the AH or to put together an end-game enchant; well, maybe they should leave. The game has changed and improved.

    … let me make clear here that I never got attuned. I haven’t maxed out fishing. When I came back after a year or so off and hit 70 in TBC, old guildies made fun of me as I’d never made 60 in the year or two I’d played before. I’m a real casual player.

    Yet I still think the attunement quests in BC were some of the best I’ve played. Fishing doesn’t build much backstory. It’s mindless, and I guess “contributes” (quotes make sense if you read the RPG Vault post from earlier) in a way that’s more lasting than playing Solitaire, but it’s a cop-out for the Blizzard designers.

    Fishing at any level and dailies for rep and cash don’t make the game better. They make the addictive rewards (again, please read the Vault post to see the context of why I say addictive) more accessible. I can’t wait until the storytelling is why we play more, not simple virtual economics that quickly spill into real ones.

    Before, fishing was a sideline, a somewhat interesting bit of trivia about hardcore players (“seriously, you maxed it?”) and the source of a few neat pets, like good ole Pinchy. Now, it’s becoming a much more accessible virtual revenue stream: “Fishing and cooking pay quite well.”

    Add inflation and that hard core fishing is such that you’d expect several PUG members to have it, well, it’s another spent resource. That’s cheapening. /shrug Oh well. The good thing about virtual economics is that there’s no reason the bubble ever has to burst — until the hardcore, like Teeth & Claws, even Resto4Life’s Phaelia, start to head for other, better outlets.

  11. Posted June 2, 2009 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Don’t forget your old Shattrath daily fishing too. That one gives the crocs as pets!

  12. Posted June 2, 2009 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

    @Troutwort – Don’t worry, I do both fishing daily quests (that’s why the SS of me that I posted is in Outlands!)

  13. scaresome
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

    Jalindrine posted an excellent comment.

    I went and read the posting linked to RPGvault. Now, I have a new perspective.

    I almost feel defensive that I enjoy the rewards in the game; having been surely manipulated.

    ….and I wanted that choppa real bad too.

  14. Posted June 4, 2009 at 11:19 pm | Permalink

    @scaresome –

    Well, it’s not like it’s my idea. ;) Thought Blow had a pretty interesting take on it, and as developer of indie Braid, he’s got a bit of clout to boot. Glad you read through the Vault post, though I’m not sure I quite buy in to Vogel’s apologetics. /shrug Something to keep in mind while you play, certainly!