Fishing is a timeless Terraria activity. The early game potential to get your hands on powerful loot makes it worthwhile, with the chance to pick up some serious gear like the Reaver Shark, Rockfish, and the Frog Leg. These are some of the best Pre-Hardmode items you can get.
Fishing Rod List
Reinforced Fishing Pole
For how cheap it is, you’re better off angling (get it?) for the Reinforced Fishing Pole than the Wood Fishing Pole when early game fishing. Costing only eight Iron bars, you can get this rod just as soon as you head underground.
You won’t get any incredible loot with a Fishing Power of 15 percent, but if you’re looking to get started on fishing quests before you tackle the Eye of Cthulu, this rod will serve you well. Considering that many great poles can be obtained solely from fishing, this rod could even upgrade itself.
Fisher Of Souls
The Fisher of Souls is crafted with Demonite Bars, earned from beating the Eye of Cthulu or Eater of Worlds, as well as mining its ore in the Corruption. Since the Eye of Cthulu is one of the easiest bosses in the game to farm for resources, this rod can be picked up early in the development of the world.
Clocking in at a Fishing Power of 20 percent, this rod is really great for the early and midgame, likely to be the one you use until Hardmode if you aren’t explicitly seeking out the more difficult-to-get poles available.
The Fleshcatcher is better than its Corruption counterpart in every way, boasting a Fishing Power of 22 percent at a similar cost to its sibling. Two percent is not worth jumping worlds to get at the end of the day, but if you end up spawning in a Crimson world, you can rest easy knowing you’ve got just a bit more fishing luck on your side.
If that two percent difference is enough for you, though, you’d be better served by going after a better rod; by the time you can craft both evil poles, there are at least two other fishing rods that blow them out of the water. Otherwise, just enjoy the extra crates.
The Scarab Fishing Rod
This is a fairly rare rod, as it’s only found when fishing in the Oasis mini-biome. The rod appears in both Mirage and Oasis crates, meaning that you’ll be likely to find the Magic Conch as you search for it– with the ability to teleport to the Ocean at short notice, you can put this powerful rod to the test as soon as you get it.
Offering a Fishing Power of 30 percent, the Scarab Fishing Rod outclasses most Pre-Skeletron rods. Because it can only really be obtained through rare crates, though, it may be difficult to get your hands on with a starter rod like the Wooden Fishing Pole.
The Chum Caster is an easy-to-get pole if you’re still Pre-Hardmode, obtainable from the Zombie Merman or Wandering Eye Fish when fishing during a Blood Moon. Both of these enemies aren’t too hard to dispatch and have a one-in-eight chance of dropping the rod upon death.
Be careful if you’re looking for the Chum Caster in Hardmode, though; you’re just as likely to pull up a Hardmode enemy as you are to catch the creatures you’re looking for, so it might be better to head after one of the higher tier rods available at this point.
Fiberglass Fishing Pole
The Fiberglass Fishing Pole can actually be obtained as early as your first day in the world, found in Jungle and Bramble Crates as well as Ivy Chests. If you love to fish more than anything else, it might not be a bad idea to rush the Jungle with your rod as soon as possible.
If you get your hands on this fishing pole, you have the best possible rod you can get Pre-Skeletron outside completing the Angler’s quests. Even when you unlock the better options, the Fiberglass Fishing Pole remains one of the cheapest and easiest rods to obtain, able to carry you well past Skeletron for all your fishing needs.
The Mechanic’s Rod is the first big fishing rod upgrade after beating Skeletron and unlocking the Dungeon. It has a Fishing Power of 35 percent, being only slightly better than the Pre-Skeletron rods seen up to this point.
The rod is only sold by the Mechanic for 20 gold coins once the Angler is living in your village or when the moon is in a certain phase. Since it’s easier to get this rod than anything that proves better than it, the little improvement you see between it and its predecessors is justified.
Sitting Duck’s Fishing Pole
The Sitting Duck Fishing Pole (a nice play on words with Sitting Bull) is a very rare drop from the Traveling Merchant. It’s only available after defeating Skeletron, and even then, the merchant isn’t guaranteed to have this item.
Given that it’s somewhat rare to see one in his inventory, it’s always worth checking if your Traveling Merchant has a Sitting Duck Fishing Pole in stock. You can’t get a better fishing rod in Terraria unless you complete Angler quests– with a Fishing Power of 40 percent, this is the third-best fishing pole in the game.
Hotline Fishing Hook
The first rod that can fish in lava by default (though you can equip the Lavaproof Fishing Hook if you want to use another pole in the Underworld), this hellish pole is only available via completing Angler quests.
It has a low chance of dropping from the Angler after completing 25 quests, and can only drop in Hardmode, meaning you’ll need to defeat the Wall of Flesh to get this rod. You can complete quests in the run-up to Hardmode, though, to contribute to the overall total so that you can try for the Hotline Fishing Hook as soon as you cross the threshold.
Golden Fishing Rod
The Golden Fishing Rod is the best rod in the game with a Fishing Power of 50 percent. It’s also the most frustrating rod to get your hands on. Essentially, you get this rod as an Angler reward after exactly 30 completed quests, which is time-consuming in and of itself.
Though not all the Angler quests are difficult, many take ages and require you to jump around the map to complete them. If you don’t end up catching the required fish within the allotted time, it’s back to the drawing board– unless you do nothing but fish from the moment you meet the Angler, you aren’t likely to get this rod before Hardmode.