You don’t need to look very long at Legend of the Skyfish to know which series it takes influence from. Heck, the clue is in the name itself. Taking place on a set of islands, you take on the role of Little Red Hook, a girl with a particular talent of traversing the land and vanquishing foes with – of all things – a fishing rod. She sets out with the wise Moonwhale to defeat the monstrous Skyfish, a legendary evil that awakens after some fisherman decided to cast their line in forbidden waters.
The game is a blatant take on The Legend of Zelda, featuring familiar puzzles that require you to use your fishing rod as both a weapon and a grappling hook. You’ll need to press multiple switches, unlock various gates, plunder hidden items before destroying each island’s mystical totem.
Your items are upgradable at various points of the game, granting bonuses such as improved speed for your grappling hook, and a longer range for your melee attacks. There’s little opportunity for exploration, as the game’s islands essentially act as individual levels, with linear progression via a rudimentary overworld.
The main problem with the game is that is just doesn’t provide even a modicum of challenge from start to finish. You can figure out every puzzle within moments of encountering them, and the various enemies move so slowly that you can avoid and defeat them without breaking much of a sweat.
It’s a shame, because the game looks quite nice, and with tighter controls and a bit more thought into the puzzle design, it could have been a decent alternative to the Zelda games. As it is, it’s merely a poor imitation.