Merk's Review: Slap That Fish

The “official” version can be found at my website:

Interesting. I didn’t feel motivated to play to optimize this game thoroughly: I kind of wanted to (and I did replay the first few fights), but there were (I thought) too few clues about how to improve my performance against the first few fish. Maybe if the game gave more feedback about why one has done a sub-par job in a given fight?

But this is hard to get right, I suspect. Still, I was very glad that it wasn’t actually a randomized combat system, as I initially feared.

It sort of gives feedback. If you get a score approaching 20 (which is possible, once you figure out how to simply not waste time), it tells you to optimize your moves. The trick is figuring out the slap/backhand combo. Once I did that, it all worked pretty well. I figured out the first few for max points, no problem.

It gets harder, later. I sat there for quite a while with about 3 different saves on each fish, jumping between them trying to see how certain things would or wouldn’t work, how it’d affect my total turns used, etc. I had a lot of fun doing that, although it was a lot of work. Somehow, there was enough feedback that I was able to figure it out.


You are my hero.

Thank you for the review and – oh my! The walkthrough. You mentioned a notated transcript above – if you still had it lying around, I would love a copy, and any other comments you may have, as I am of course putting together a post-comp bug-fix release.

Oh, and did I mention you are my hero? Oh. Yes, I did.

– Peter

Heh! I think most people just didn’t get it. You really have to want to get a perfect score to get into the game on a deeper level.

Sure, I’ll send you the transcripts shortly.

— Mike.

Thanks much. I guess I wouldn’t say the problem was that people didn’t get it, but that the way that some players approached and interpreted the game put them off. I like games that make you figure out how to play when in progress, like OREVORE COURIER, for another example, but it isn’t for everyone – and I note OREVORE didn’t score as highly as I might have hoped, either.

– Peter

I have to admit this was one game that I really didn’t like. It seemed like a joke entry, both from the title and the first few minutes of play, and I think if it had been entered anonymously, or if I didn’t know who the author was, I’d have quit it straight off the bat and written it off as a joke entry.

But even when I persevered with it, I just couldn’t find anything about it to like. It was very repetitive, it had no storyline to speak of, the entire game followed pretty much the same format - you’re attacked by a fish and have to defeat it. Having to find a weapon at one point to attack the fish with made it marginally more interesting, but by this stage I was already tired of it and wanted to play something else instead.

I guess we all have our off days.

The large amount of turns I spent resting hurt this game.