Your choice of casting method is all-important,
particularly if you want to fish a given depth or
maintain a stealthy approach. So too is your tackle,
some of which is quite heavy and has a tendency to
sink quickly to the bottom of shallow waterways.
When joining a multiplayer game with people you don't
know and trust, don't ever believe that the default
tackle is correct for the circumstance and environment.
There's a very good chance your opponents are handing
out the wrong tackle and then making a quick switch once
the game has begun.
Even small fish can break free if you're applying too
much tension. Let the fish fight for a while and keep
your rod down. Then slowly start bringing him in, keeping
the rod low and allowing him to reel it back out when he
invariably makes another run for it.