For mobile gamers in western Japan, a hearty seafood dinner awaits just a few key clicks away, thanks to a unique new cellphone fishing game that rewards successful players with home deliveries of fresh, real-world fish. The game — called “Ippon Zuri” (which means “pole-and-line fishing”) — was created by FIT, a Fukuoka-based system development company who teamed up with a local seafood shop.
Game play is simple: players use the phone keys to cast bait to promising-looking fish in the game’s virtual waters, which include sea bream, crab, and other seasonal fish. When a fish takes the bait, the player is sent to a slot machine screen where, if luck prevails and 3 numbers line up appropriately, the virtual fish is hooked and reeled in. A message is then relayed to the wholesaler, who picks up the real-world equivalent from the local seafood market and delivers it, whole and raw, to the player’s doorstep.
The creators of the game suggests that Ippon Zuri is more enjoyable than other fishing games because it allows players to eat what they catch. The game (which seems rather like a fancy seafood ordering system) promises more entertainment than a mundane trip to the supermarket and more convenience than a fishing trip to the seaside, and it makes a great pick-me-up for hungry fishermen feeling down on their real-world luck.