Storm Wildeye Live Goby
Author: Rob Belloni
Storm has a large and ever-expanding lineup of swimbait and swimbait-esque creations. The Wildeye Live Goby came out to join the herd somewhere around late 2007 or early 2008. This sculpin imitation is available in three sizes (2.5, 3, and 4.5 inches). The 3" bait reviewed here weighs 1/4oz and comes in one color (pictured). A three pack of Wildeye Live Gobys will set you back $3.79.
The Wildeye Live Goby is a small lure, but one that houses a lot of detail. This is the upside of large-scale commercial production. Not only do you get transparent fins with injected colors, you also get articulated gill plates and a very respectable plastic eyeball. It might sound like I'mmaking a joke here, but for $1.89 per lure, this is fantastic detail.
At 1/4oz the Wildeye Live Goby sinks fast on appropriate line. 10-14lb would be a great place to start with this one. I can't sit here and tell you that all three of my lures swam just right, but they were not bad. Considering how many $10 and up lures I've bought over the years that swam horribly I would say that Storm did a good job with this one.
I'd consider the Wildeye Live Goby as a bedfishing lure, particularly for smallmouth. I might also give it a try around shallow, rocky flats areas on spotted bass or smallies. If you bought 3 or 4 packs, you might find some that swam just right. My feeling is that 1 in 5 baits is going to be a money swimmer, and if you had that bait, I think you might find yourself reeling in a lot of bass. With the rest you could bed fish them, tweak them, or dye them brown, cast them under a rocky ledge and deadstick - just like gobies and sculpin really act. I'm just throwing some ideas out here...
In California, gobies are not a talked about piece of bass forage, but in other parts of the country savvy anglers make a point to imitate these critters. Lake Erie is especially well known for it's goby bite for giant smallmouth. My feeling is that the Wildeye Live Goby could be a legitimate option there, and in any location where you feel goby are present. For the price it would be hard not to justify adding a pack to your TW order.
Storm could have improved this bait by making the plastic softer to get more kick at slow speed. As a mass-market type lure, I suspect that they err toward tougher plastic to avoid complaints that the lures fall apart. But for $1.89 I'd be fine to catch 2 or 3 fish per bait. Softer plastic could help with the "getting bit" factor.
The color selection is also hard to understand, unless you're having some kind of 60's flashbacks. Storm's soft plastic coloring technology is such that they could put out super-realistic baits. But in the interest of catching fishermen they seem to prefer psychedelic greens and pearlescent interiors. The bait pictured isn't terrible, but it's weird. Sculpin and gobys try to hide, not stand out.
Overall this is a unique bait in the swimbait category, and it's one that's priced to sell. If you're thinking about gobies and sulpin as forage and you have $4 burning a hole in your pocket, give these a try.