Shenmue 3 fishing explained: How to fish and unlock new fishing spots

How to take part in the optional side-activity.

Fishing in Shenmue 3 is a newly added activity for the third game in the series.

As you explore, you'll see a number of fishing spots, as indicated by a fish on a signpost. You won't be able to access these until you have a fishing rod - but even then, some are unavailable.

We explain how to start fishing and how fishing spots work as you play.

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If you're after more help, our Shenmue 3 walkthrough can help with other parts of the adventure.

How do you start fishing in Shenmue 3

Despite fishing spots appearing in the first few areas of the game - such as to the sides of the Verdant Bridge as you may your way to the Village Square - you cannot fish without a rod.

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To get a fishing rod in Shenmue 3, you have to keep playing the game until you can reach a place where you can rent one.

You may have noticed you cannot progress past the Village Square until a certain point in the game, and to reach the fishing shop, you need to have completed the story up until you have explored Xu's house and shown the picture and name list to people nearby.

Once you have spoken to Shenhua after this, you can venture a little further behind the Village Square. At the end, go left, and you'll see a sign post pointing in the direction of a 'fishing spot'.

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Take the path up the hill, and on the right is Man Yuan Temple, but if you keep going, you'll reach a lake on your left, and Huang's Tackle ahead.

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It's here where you can rent a rod. There are several varieties, and the more expensive it is, the better the quality of fish you can find.

We found it's worth stumping for the more expensive one, as after you fish, you'll automatically sell back your fish and earn back the investment anyway.

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It'll be yours until the end of the day, or whenever you finish fishing at a spot, whichever is sooner. If you want to fish more than once per day, you have to return to Huang's Tackle to get another rod. It's a bit of a faff, so make sure you select your spot wisely.

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How to use fishing spots and unlock new fishing spots

You'll notice a fishing spot by a telltale signpost near a body of water.

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Most fishing spots are open to you from the start of the game, and allow you to access them with a rented rod when approached.

However, there are some that cannot be used until you have unlocked them. These are those that have a 'broken' sign, with the fish emblem faded out, and the sign itself not straight.

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You unlock these by progressing through the game and completing side-quests, such as the Future Dream quest, which unlocks the pond just left of the cow shed next to Panda Market.

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Even if you know where a rare fishing spot is - such as this one - you cannot access it until you have completed the quest.


Our in-progress Shenmue 3 walkthrough will explain Wang Wen's location and Shiren's location, where to find the bookie with the facial scar and hide and seek locations. We also have explainers on the White Lure and Diamond P quest and Future Dream quest, fishing, fighting, food, making money and tokens and where to find Digital Deluxe DLC.


Fishing basics and fishing controls in Shenmue 3 explained

Once you have a rod, fishing is fairly simple. Approach a fishing spot - as indicated by the fish on a sign post - and press the activity button when lit up (or Square on PS4) to start the process.

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First, find a place to cast, then press the X button. You can move the line around with the left thumb stick until a fish bites.

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From there, you need to start reeling in by rotating the right stick round and round. Continue doing this while arrows appear on the screen, which you must follow with the left stick.

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Keep this process up until you have caught the fish.

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Remember, you'll only rent the rod until the end of this session, so make use of it because once you back out, it's automatically returned, and your caught fish sold off.

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Best of luck!

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About the author

Matthew Reynolds

Matthew Reynolds

Guides Editor

Matthew edits guides and other helpful things at Eurogamer.net. When not doing that, he's out and about playing Pokémon Go or continuing to amass his amiibo collection.

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