Welcome to Gaia! ::

Having come to the fishing forum, I've seen a lot of topics posted by confused people, new to fishing, who are struggling like nothing else, yet failing to catch what they want. Well, fear not! This is intended as a guide to getting started fishing. If you've already picked out your lake, bought your rod, and picked out your bait, then just jump down to the Technique section.


Alright. The first thing that you should know, as someone new to fishing, is the difficulty level of the various lakes. While harder lakes have higher selling fish, most of the time it's better to start easy, to save yourself a lot of time and frustration. Ranked by difficulty, they are:

1.) Bassken Lake - by far the easiest
2.) Port of Gambino - about mid-level difficulty
3.) Durem Reclaimation Facility - hardest, but also the highest paying.

You can get to any of the lakes using the World Map, and all of them are listed on the Teleport menu. Bassken is one above Barton town, Durem is one space right from... Durem, and Gambino is one below Gambino, or one above Bass'ken. Most new fishers should start at Bassken, which is convieniently located right next to Logan's rod & bait shop. It's also the lake that you can get to by following the links from the games page.

Before we begin fishing, though, it's important to pick out those rods & bait.

Rods & Bait


There are three classes of bait, F bait, D bait, and A bait. F bait costs 25, D bait costs 100, and A bait costs 250. There is a trick to buying bait, however.

For the first two rounds, 12 hours after your last fishing session, F bait functions exactly the same as A bait. After those two rounds, F bait degrades to being only as good as D bait. After five total rounds, F bait is F bait. D Bait functions as A bait for five rounds, and A bait is always A bait. Bait degrades at the same rate, no matter what lake you fish at. If you fish twice at Gambino, then go to Bass'ken, your F bait will still act like D bait, not A.

This means, if you start your day with 2 F bait (50), followed by 3 D bait (300), you'll be getting the quality of 5 A bait (1250) for 350 gp, or a little over 1/4 of the price.

It should be noted that only A and D grade bait can actually catch rares, as of the last report I read. (This includes F grade bait before it degrades, in case anyone was wondering.)


Now that bait is out of the way, here's a look at Rods. New people probably want to start with the basic rod, and work their way up. Not only is it the cheapest way to do it, but it's also good for training yourself. Basic rods will catch the small and medium fish, but usually miss the large. Because of this you'll want to eventually get a better rod. What are the options?

1.) Strength. The strength rod has wider bars, making it easier to catch whatever fish you hook. However, it's also next-to-impossible to catch large fish using the strength rod. As such, I would not recommend it personally.

2.) Distance. The distance rod casts out to 90 feet, and therefore has the highest chance of getting a large fish out of any of the unupgraded rods. It is wider at the top, tapering down to the same width as a basic rod. Because fish struggle most at the bottom, this isn't as much of a help to keeping the fish as it is an aid to filtering. Because of the wide top, you can spend more time watching how a fish moves before you fight it.

3.) Performance. The performance rod casts to about 75-80 feet, meaning that it can and will catch large fish, but less often than the distance rod. It's also wider at the bottom and the top, but thinner in the middle than the basic rod. Overall, it is a good rod, but takes some getting used to because of the small middle bars. If anything, I might say that it is the performance rod, because it improves your performance in the middle bars. (Note: this means it takes practice; it's not easy at first)

Upgraded Rods

If you've been fishing for a while, you'll probably notice that there are a few people hanging around with a big yellow plus sign floating next to them. These people are using an upgraded rod, or plus rod. Generally, an upgraded rod will be able to cast 10 feet farther, and the lines will be about 1/4 inch wider on each side. While that doesn't seem like much, that 10 feet can make hooking large fish easier... and if the extra quarter inch is enough to catch a speeding fish, it's worth it.

However, if you cannot catch a fish with an unupgraded rod, don't expect the plus rod to make up for that immediately. You have more to work with, but that doesn't mean that you don't have to work.

An upgraded rod costs about 10,000 gold past the price of the rod if you do it through Logan's. If you aren't up for that kind of expense, either because you are a casual fisher or poor, they are often sold at the marketplace for less, but not much.


In real fishing, a great deal of the technique is in the casting, and finding the right spot to fish from. Thankfully, on Gaia, this is mostly taken care of by the computer. The great deal of the technique here is regarding keeping the fish on the line, or within the lines. To do that, there are a few things that should be pointed out.

So, you throw out your line, and, lo and behold, you have a bite. The screen lights up, and bars appear, and then, suddenly, you have a fish pulling crazily to the left. To compensate, you pull hard to the right, struggling with it. Then, it veers hard to the right, and almost immediately slips out of your grasp. You, meanwhile, sit there baffled. Why? You've made a simple mistake, and not followed the first, fundamental rule of fishing.

1.) Don't Over Pull.

When you are fishing, if a fish jerks suddenly to the right, most people's initial reaction is to jerk suddenly to the left, and hard. This usually won't be the right reaction. The right thing to do is to pull *just hard enough* that the fish will almost get to the bar it's heading toward before it changes direction. Unless the fish will hit the bar, you generally want the fish to still be inching its way slowly toward the bar it wants to head toward. If you do this, it gives you the most time to react when the fish turns around and heads the other direction. It also prevents the number one problem of over-pulling...

Fish that are over-pulled get to turn your extra force into a gigantic speed boost when they change direction, especially if they're larger and pull harder.

This means that, not only do you have less time to react because the fish is closer to the bar it wants to head toward, but it's heading there at somewhere close to Mach 3, making it nearly impossible to react to. And, if you do successfully react to it, it's almost impossible to avoid over-pulling in the other direction. This means that you'll have to struggle to keep the fish the whole way, when it would have been easy if you'd have just been gentle in the first place.

This is especially important with the larger fish, which are honestly the fish most people want to go for in the first place.

2.) Chamber Your Rod Correctly.

What do I mean? Well, it's rather simple. If you position your cursor incorrectly (say, in the chat window) when a fish first starts to pull, the rod will pull that fish out of line. Because of this, it's important to begin with your rod in a neutral position. Getting a good handle on where the neutral position is will also help you with 'filtering', and with keeping from over pulling.

The correct, neutral position for most rods is with your cursor over, or a little to the right of, the far right bar. This will keep you from pulling your fish immediately, which makes it more predictable, and gives you more time to react or study its movement.

3.) Learn the Interval

All types of fish pull differently, but all fish of a species pull the same. Interval does vary by lake, but essentially follows a similar pattern... one fish of each type pulls for a long time, one pulls for a fairly standard time, and one changes direction quickly. In general, fish decrease their interval as they get larger, and trash has the slowest interval. Pull, however, is really how to tell fish apart.

The main use of learning the interval is so that you will know how close you can let a fish get to the bar before it changes direction. It also allows you to time your own change of direction, or reaction, better, because you know about where to expect it. Don't jump the gun, however: it's best to allow the fish to start changing direction before you do. Again, that's why it's good to let it drift toward the bar: so it has some space to change direction before you have to react.

4.) Practice

Nobody just immediately excels at fishing, unless they've done this kind of thing before, in another game. Getting good takes practice. Once you practice enough, and if you read up on the different techniques / kinds of fish, you'll be catching almost every fish you want. And you'll also know what kinds of fish you honestly *don't* want.

--- Advanced Tactics / Techniques ---

1.) Filtering (or, Optimizing Your Catch)

Smaller fish generally pull less than medium fish, and medium are generally easier than large fish. Trash pulls softest, and usually has the longest interval. How can you tell this? Check the graphic of the rod, and how close you are to making it change, or how far from the normal, resting position it is. Depending on how hard the fish is pulling, you'll be able to tell if it's a Striper, Bass, or Guppy... or trash. If you're fishing at Bass'ken, anyway.

Filtering is extremely useful, because, among other things, it allows you to use your first two baits (which are always As) most efficiently. You could, potentially, catch more than 500 gp of fish on one F bait, if you're using filtering. Of course, this requires that you follow the advice of the next section.

i. Filtering At Bass'ken

Filtering at Bass'ken is fairly simple, but still something of an art. Essentially, it involves equalling the fish's pull. The harder it pulls, the bigger it is. It's very intuitive, except in the case of the Red Guppy, which acts like a bass.

The first method of filtering is simple. If you catch something close to the shore, it's much less likely to be a large or medium fish. This is even better represented in the stickies. If it's far out in the waters, it could be large or medium. Therefore, if you only catch fish that're farther than 60 feet into the lake, you'll automatically have a better haul.

The second is tricky, and involves graphics. All bass pull hard enough that, to equal their pull, you have to bring the rod to juuust before it changes graphics to the 2nd level pull. This means that all guppies will start to drift toward your pull at that border or before. Even the red ones. The easiest way to get to that border is to overpull slightly, then back it off. The difference is most apparent when you've got the guppy within 25 feet of you.

Stripers move faster, and will force you into that 2nd level graphic before you can equal them. Most guppies (other than the red) will not pull hard enough to pass the line on either side until they're almost to you. It's easy to tell with anything but red.

Stylish Headwear

What, exactly, is the point of fishing? To get money, by selling to Logan, or the marketplace? To have fun, and spend time with friends?

Well, yes. But you also probably want to get a hat. You can get fish hats by trading in 100 of any single kind of fish to Logan, or 10 fish if they're rare. Or a TON of junk. 500 tires, 1000 boots, 5000 cans. Now, you can get even more items, such as the gills, teeth, and 4x / 3x hats.

However, I'm not a big one for duplicating things... so here's The Fish Exchange Thread by Novarren, which is also a forum stickie. There's pictures of every hat & people wearing them. Enjoy!

Selling Your Catch

I cannot stress this enough. DO NOT JUST SELL TO LOGAN. The only fish that he buys competitively are Pebbos, Guppies, and Seedkins (depending on inflation). This is because they are easy enough to catch (when you're decently good) that there is an absolute glut of them on the market.

Instead, sell your fish on the marketplace. Sell your trash on the marketplace, 100% of the time. With Cans selling for more than 10gp apiece, they should never, ever, be sold to Logan.

Pricing is competitive, but always better than at Logan's. This is where the real profit is: the marketplace, not the store. And not just with fish.

One note, however. If you are selling on the marketplace, larger amounts of fish generally sell better, and for more money than smaller ones. Additionally, it's a better idea simply to set the buy-price, not bid, as most people tend to prefer to buy fish over waiting for days to see if they got them.

(Note: To sell fish, or anything, at the marketplace, you must first purchase a vend license at the bank. There's a step by step tutorial posted for setting up shop here.)

Fishing Competitively

(Note: Until stats are reinstated, the competition won't be generally available. C'mon, mods!)

You may have noticed the fishing stats page in the bait shop, and seen the faces of some of the competitors who, each month, devote a huge amount of time, effort, and gold to trying to get trophies. The contest is a test of skill, endurance, devotion, willpower... and requires sheer, ungodly amounts of free time.

Generally, the competition winds up costing the competitors a lot of money. Most often, it is done almost entirely using A quality bait, with costs often running in excess of 100K. Bass'ken is the easiest to lose money at, because the fish are so low yield. Even the best of buckets will not pay the cost of A bait if they are sold to Logan. Through heavy filtering, I was able to get 9th place in Bass'ken in July '05 and still make a profit on the market, after only a 25K initial investment. I am an exception.

However, the competition still requires a huge investment of time. Generally, getting Gold will require catching more thank 15,000 fish, or using almost 1000 bait... depending on who is competing and how dedicated they are. In June, the two people vying for Top Overall scored 500,000 points each, catching more than 40,000 fish. Spending 8 to 10 hours a day fishing is not unusual for someone fishing for Gold.

At the end of the month, everyone in the lakes top ten gets a trophy. 1st gets gold, 2nd gets silver, and 3rd through 10th get bronzes. Top 25 get recorded in the Top Fishers Thread next month. Only the first in the Overall category recieves a trophy, although the names of the top 25 are recorded.

While I would recommend to anyone who is interested in testing their ability to try to get into the Top 25 for a while, I would not recommend the competition for Top Ten to anyone who is not willing to sacrifice a great part of their lives and time to this game.


People fish for a lot of reasons. Some fish for gold, others for hats, and still others, just for fun. The participants in the monthly fishing competition are a bit of a different breed.

They fish for Pride.

(And because they make friends with all the other top fishers, who don't cut them any slack.)


Captcha Problems:

Recently, Gaia has started to put a captcha code on buckets to prevent the epidemic botting that was going on. Often, if you type in the captcha field, it'll show up in the chat, and you will be unable to save your bucket.

Currently, the workaround is to type the captcha in the chat window, select it with the mouse, right click, copy, click on the captcha field, right click, paste, and hit submit. This will let you save your bucket.

It's a bit messy, but it works. Good fishing!

Any compliments, comments, or complaints would be appreciated. Thanks!
Nobara made a sticky with the same info + some more at the top of the forum.
Ahh. In that case...

::points to top of forum:: Newbies, check her's out, too.

(Somehow, I think making something a sticky almost makes it *less* likely to get read... ::ahem: smile
Still, I think the observations under technique are fairly valid... And easier to get from here than from Nobara's. Maybe they'll grab a bit from mine.
daprisoner's avatar

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neither of the guides are that long aswell, so u might aswell read both
good job
Oh, one last thing to note, that a lot of people miss...

While the rod may only have 3 or 4 graphical positions, the actual pull exerted by the rod is a spectrum. To adjust your pull, you may only want to move a tiny bit to the left or right, instead of moving until the graphic changes. I'm sure most of ya'll have figured this out, but it's still good to keep in mind.
<center>great thread 3nodding its really understandable and short so that its not too confusing. but i have a question: is fishing really worth it? i mean you pay for all the fish bait and the rods...then you have to buy a vending licence. and then you might want to plus your rods. that is pretty much a lot of money lost. but then you can get TONS of gold if you catch rares...which is pretty darn hard...so is it all worth it? ><;;
-sorry if this is a dumb question-
Kurama no Koishi's avatar

Shameless Wench

Yay thread! Easy to understand. Good job
<center>great thread 3nodding its really understandable and short so that its not too confusing. but i have a question: is fishing really worth it? i mean you pay for all the fish bait and the rods...then you have to buy a vending licence. and then you might want to plus your rods. that is pretty much a lot of money lost. but then you can get TONS of gold if you catch rares...which is pretty darn hard...so is it all worth it? ><;;
-sorry if this is a dumb question-

Well, honestly, you probably want to buy a vending license anyway, because if you want to sell your outfit, it makes sense to sell it for a lot more money than they'll pay at the store. I've sold outfits for full price (or more, when I was dumb), and I'd never have worn them again.

As for fish, consider this. Stripers can go for 100 gp. Bass for 10-50. In an average catch, and it's the first of the day, I spend 25 gold. I get about 6-7 bass, and at least one striper. That's about 160 gold on 25. If I filter, like today, I've got 5 stripers and 9 bass (took a while, though.). If I sold all of them, I'd get about 590 gold, for 25g, and it's a lot more interesting than bumping in the chatterbox, especially if there are people around. Even trash goes for 5 per tire / boot, and 10+ per can.

I think it's worth it. You can earn decent gold, and if you've got an interesting chat-room, have a good time socializing.
i stink at fishing but i still make gold off of it...lol i have troulble with the port so i usually just stick to the lake but you still make a good amount of gold off that...and its fun especially as a group! 3nodding
If anyone's particularly interested, and there's a good price guide still in existance, could someone direct me?

So far as I can tell, Bass sell for 15-50, Stripers for 100+, and cans for 10 - 20. Guppies don't sell. Anyone want to add? I'm actually kind of curious.
I'd advise you to change all "noobies" to "newbies". Those two terms are commonly confused, and although many newbies are considered n00bs at times, this isn't always the case.
Chrono has one. BTW: Nobara's threatening to recycle-bin anyone who has this type of post.
Well, until he / she recycle bins my topic, or PMs me about it, I'm leavin' it around. I think it's still useful, even if someone's already read through Nobara's topic.
[ Shard ]
Well, until he / she recycle bins my topic, or PMs me about it, I'm leavin' it around. I think it's still useful, even if someone's already read through Nobara's topic.

That's what I think too... especially since no one reads teh stickies.


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