This is a guest entry written by my girlfriend. I haven’t gotten a chance to play Wii Fit yet, but she seems to enjoy it so I asked her to write a review:
OK, so the biggest thing in video games in Japan before I left was the Nintendo Wii Fit. Since last fall I saw multiple commercials showing the various games you could play. This past spring I taught English to a group of kids in their apartments, and all their mothers had the Wii Fit balance board hidden away discreetly–which is what the innovatively designed and sleek unit allows you to do.
I wanted one so bad.
Luckily when I got home in the States, a good friend hooked me up with the very last one in stock at his place of employment. Since then I have taken quite a shine to it and try to use it everday for at least a half hour. Compared to other games involving moving your body, the Wii Fit definitely excels in the health department.
My experiences with interactive gaming equipment include Taiko Drum Master, Dance Dance Revolution, and Rock Band. But the Wii Fit seemed different. It has an inspired but effortless look about it, which makes the other games seem like they’re trying too hard. I had to try this thing, where you use your own body weight and balance to improve your health.
That’s another difference: the Wii Fit was made intentionally for getting healthy, where the other games were not. Sure, DDR is known for shedding pounds off of tap-happy chubsters, but performing the same motions you would need to lose weight without the game? Please. With the Wii Fit, they actually walk you step by step through the exercises–real, legitamite exercises that you can do on your own without the board if for whatever reason you find yourself stranded from it.
So anyway, let’s talk about the game play itself. When you first use the game you are to select a Mii that will represent you and your health. You enter in your height and birthdate, subtract the weight of your clothes, and are presented with your BMI. Along the way the game offers tips and advice about what you need to work on.
My BMI is normal, but my balance is shifted to the heel of my left foot. Who knew? So my balance is what I need to work on, it tells me. And there are plenty of ways to work on it: nearly all the exercises involve maintaining your balance within a confined area so that you have an idea of what proper balance should feel like. Then you are scored on how well you kept the balance. The game also rewards you with how many minutes you’ve saved up and unlocks more games along the way.
Exercises range from Yoga, Strength Training, Aerobics, and Balance. My routine has consistently been doing a bunch of yoga first for stretches, and then strength training, followed by aerobics. I am the worst with balance games, although when one of the games involve your Mii dressed up like a penguin and using your balance to feed it, you find yourself coming back for more.
I could go on and on, but the most important thing is that I can feel results. The muscles that I worked out on yesterday are sore in the specific areas that I played. That’s not to say there aren’t any drawbacks. Which leads me to make this list of pros and cons:
- exercises work
- the balance board is eerily accurate
- great way to keep up an exercise routine
- unlocking games encourage longer exercise time
- everything is simple and easy to understand
- it’s a pain in the ass juggling with the Wii remote (I just put mine down during exercises)
- the load times are kind of obnoxious and turn a 30 minute workout into 45
- there is no way to skip dialogue
Honestly though, I really enjoy the Wii Fit and see it more as an inexpensive piece of gym equipment than another game accessory. No treadmills or rowing machines for me. Nossir. I highly recommend the Wii Fit for those who hate the gym but want to get, well, fit. It’s a simple way to keep your weight in check without all the flashing arrows.
Wii Fit Preview