Basics of Fishing
First this guide contains spoilers. It’s written as if you don’t care about spoilers or have finished the game and not touched fishing yet.
[Spoiler] There are several reasons to take up fishing. The fish drop items useful to hunting and crafting as well as items for selling to make money. While people will farm might seeds to get an extra 2500z per trip (useful if you just bounce around the expedition map to multiply it fast) the fisher can come back with like 50 scales from a trip to be sold for 1000z each and keep their farm making items necessary for hunting.
Similarly a person who knows fishing spots can find items for quick healing or to make sharpening your weapon quicker — useful for those that lose sharpness quickly.
There is a fishing skill, Mast Fisher, it has one level and makes catching bigger fish easier. Bigger fish start an quicktime event where you need to press the circle button (PS4) repeatedly and shift the analog stick. Just pound that circle button and the skill isn’t necessary but it’s useful when you weren’t expecting to catch a great fish.
Great fish are bigger versions of the normal fish and are counted in another row on the Aquatic Life tab under Endemic Life in the Monster Field Guide contained in the Hunter’s Notes (available through the Options menu(PS4)) Describing this game’s menu system is a chore, luckily fishing isn’t.
There are several baits, I never used any of them. Ever. One is the baitbug to help do everything I guess, then the gunpowderfish/arowana bait which help with their branches of fish respectively.
Types of Fish
Pink Parexus, Whetfish, Sushifish: these are what I call basic fish. They’re on every map. The whetfish catch gives you an item for sharpening your weapon, quicker than the normal sharpening if you don’t have any skills. Sushifish has scales that heal you quickly and cure bleeding (very useful in the rotten vale).
The basic fish are accompanied by the crafting fish: Burst Arowana, Bomb Arowana, and Gunpowsderfish. They produce useful crafting materials for those making gunpowder. I don’t used ranged weapons but I know one of them makes scales useful for making bombs. These three usually show up in shallow water.
Real Big Fish: Gastronome Tuna, King Marlin, Petricanths. The tuna drops items, sometimes a golden scale sometimes a seed or an ancient potion. I think the loot table changes by region. Also he’s worth 150 points. King Marlin is rare, worth lots of points, only appears in the Ancient Forest in one spot, has long nose and big spikes on back fin, and Petricanths is the trophy fish that glows blue-you can only catch him at two spots: one in Rotten Vale and in the Elder’s Recess.
Valuable fish: Goldenfry can apparently be caught everywhere but I’ve never seen them before Wildspire Waste. Goldenfish are in Coral Highlands on, and Platinumfish just appear in Elder’s Recess fishing spots. The Goldenfry look like little gold fish, scales sell for 500, Goldenfish for 1k, and Platinumfish for 2k. The great versions of these fish sell for much more.
How to Fish
There are controls shown on the screen if you have that function enabled. Find a spot where you can fish, preferably a spot where you can actually see the fish, and pick the fishing rod from your item bar. You can select baits but it’s not necessary.
Most fish seem to have a zone of vision like monsters-so they react based on the distance from you. Basically it seems like some are near-sighted and others a bit far-sighted. Try and thrown the fish directly in front of the fish, if it doesn’t respond quickly try again then try further away by several feet in front of the fish, still no response try to the right or left side of the fish. Finally try behind it. If nothing works try again starting with close.
The way the water refracts it’s easy to forget the real positioning of the fish. Your spot the game aims your bobber at is on the top of the water, the bait slightly below that, but the image of the fish is somewhat askew from it’s real position and understanding this will allow you to more accurately catch the fish. Generally you try to aim for directly in front of the fish. It’s not that complicated but if the fish doesn’t show interest immediately start trying other positions.
It’s important not to spook the fish: using a net by a pool will spook them, wiggling at fish that don’t want to be wiggled at will spook them, pulling the bait up when a fish is interested but hasn’t clamped down will spook them. Some fish nibble, don’t press circle until they clamp down: this is expressed in the bobber being pulled down from the surface and a soft vibration in the controller turning “deep”. Press circle to get the fish or follow the prompts for the quicktime events for big fish or great variants. All the fish have Great sizes excepting the big fish. I might be wrong.
Where To Fish
Ancient Forest several places, starting from camp at 1 (numbers refer to map #) you can make a left or right, right gets you to the first fishing spot where you’ll probably first see the Piscine Researcher, left takes you to another fishing spot in 9. I only ever saw those big fish at 9 until High Rank where 9 became a basic fish spot like 1. If you’re looking for great variants int he ancient forest these spots might be useful, or for picking up useful items during a hunt.
Further up and on the right lands you at 4 where the land meets the water by some Kestadon’s you’ll kill to fish safely. Has Whetfish, spiky backed Pink Parexus, other basic fish, and the first Gastronome Tuna who drops items when you catch him.
The spot on the map marked 11 is also fishable, it contains Arowana varieties, careful not to spook them as they’re just swimming in foot-high water.
Wildspire Wastes 1 has a spot, you’ll find the piscine researcher sitting here catching basic fish and I believe arowana.. 6, or Central Camp, contains the first Goldenfry I saw and a tuna with the basic fish. 10, south of Eastern Camp has some ankle-deep water so again we get our Arowana(they have a spike on their back that makes them arrow shaped), but it’s right nest to Jyuratodus’s spot. Then there’s some darker water that has Bomb arowana. The darkness of the water makes judging where the fish are difficult.
Coral Highlands 11, by the waterfall and red mining outcrop on the way to find the cats (top of the map) basic fish and arowana easy to spook. 14 (near the second camp) climbing up by where Legiana loves to start fighting and find an easy to miss recess (also can find a rare pearl in here) Goldenfish and goldenfry. Again hard to see in water so hard to judge when you’ve caught them all but this is the first change for those valuable scales. Still I’d wait on farming them until the next map. Then CH7, like you’re going to Tzitzi-ya-ku’s sleeping place is another spot. The basic fish and orange eyed gunpowderfish hang out here.
Rotten Vale Going in a weird order if you’ve only just unlocked the Vale. It’s a map that only allows you half-way in at first. 10-by the central camp drop down, basic fish, tunafish, and I believe golden fish, but you won’t be able to get here if you haven’t unlocked the second part of the region. 9-a spot you can get to when you first reach the level. Move past the girros infested effluvium to find a waterfall, it’s hard to see in but blue eyed whetfish, orange eyed arowana, and gunpowderfish inhabit this spot where the Piscine Researcher loves to hang out.
Rotten vale 15-by Odogaron’s lair, contains two spots to fish. They contain Goldenfry and Goldenfish and are the best spot to farm for fish scales in the game. There’s also a rare bird that shows up on the back of the pig so you might want to come in with a Ghille on in case you find it. The far pool, by the plunderers quest section, can contain Petricanth. It’s a glowing, ancient fish you need for a quest. Be careful not to spook the fish in the small pool and the area always contains a baitbug in case you find the ancient fish and are worried you’ll scare it off.
Elder’s Recess 1, by the southern camp, has basic fish and I believe Platinumfish because they can spawn at any spot in this are. Then down a cave that has Ivy in it and a few drop downs you’ll find a hot pool of water between the lava section and Gastodons. It has basic fish and a chance to spawn Platinumfish. I think the spot could be useful in a pinch but you need to take a cool drink.
Finally the Eastern camp, 8, is the spot. The best area next to 15 in the Rotten Vale. This area contains most fish: a tuna in the back far-right, basic fish in the close-right, platinum/goldenfish on the left with a chance of the super rare fish also spawning on the left, and orange eyed gunpowderfish in the middle you need to wiggle for with arowana in the back middle. A good spot to farm up materials late game and grab a platinumfish while you’re there. And if that Great Platinumfish spawns catching. You’re money baby.
-This was my first attempt at a guide. I might be editing it for formatting and stuff. Hope it helps.
Fishing is Fun!!!
And remember even if you don’t use the crafting fish their scales sale for a bit of money. If you see the rarer fish it’s worth stopping and grabbing them even during missions cause they drop hundred of points-I saw a Petricanths on a Daora quest once. And generally fishing should be quick, not slow-you point and shoot and the fish either goes for it or doesn’t. (/s)