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Wii Fit Plus (Wii) artwork

Wii Fit Plus (Wii) review

"A mouth and faceless trainer inexplicably exhales an expression into my ear, insisting that my posture is fantastic. Then the Wii Fit board under my feet speaks to me in unnaturally cheery beeps. This is probably the most unsettling thing I have ever experienced, until the FitPiggy(tm) twirls into the screen, declaring that I have recently burned calories worth about the same as licking the paper of a chocolate health-bar. "

A mouth and faceless trainer inexplicably exhales an expression into my ear, insisting that my posture is fantastic. Then the Wii Fit board under my feet speaks to me in unnaturally cheery beeps. This is probably the most unsettling thing I have ever experienced, until the FitPiggy(tm) twirls into the screen, declaring that I have recently burned calories worth about the same as licking the paper of a chocolate health-bar.

Of course, the fun doesn't start until after an elaborately uplifting introduction that encourages you to measure your weight and find your BMI while smiling from ear to ear. 3 - 2 - 1: BMI! Apparently I need to eat more burgers to score higher.

This introduction lasts, if you skip past all the impossibly cheery explanations by frenetically pushing the A button, about ten minutes. It really gets your blood flowing, specially if you fail to hit save and quit, and instead jump directly to the menu. But if you pass this challenge, your Mii - your avatar in the game - is saved, and it's now time to delve into Wii Fit's training program.

For some reason this is hidden by first pointing at your Mii, instead of any of the many buttons littering the introduction screen, and then choosing "training". On this menu, you choose between various kinds of exercises focused on balance, strength or aerobics. It is a new kind of challenge to have all this choice, but I eventually settle on the balance-exercises. This then opens up another set of about 20 more mini-games, most of which consist of standing in uncomfortable positions on the wii board for an extended period of time. However, some of them actually look like games: "Tightrope walk". I nervously mount the wii-board for the second time, to balance over a bottomless pit, and over to the brick tower on the other side, where all of the other Miis saved on the system are eyeing me in their unfathomable happiness.

The mechanics work as follows - you are to hold your balance as steadily in the center as possible, while swaying back and forth with rythm. Once your Mii takes one step ahead, shift your weight to the other side, and then continue. If your balance shifts too fast, the Mii flounders and sweats theatrically while the game tells you to compensate in the other direction. Thirty nine steps later, a snapping bear trap materialises on the rope, and advances with grim determination towards your Mii.

The suspense is palatable, as the Mii does not have knee-joints, and the Wii board sternly prohibits you from physically jumping. But then the game instructs me to straighten out my knees as I approach the bear-trap. It seems the game wishes me to cut my leg off cleanly, rather than with a struggle. But, not wishing to go against the multiple exclamation marked advice, I bravely straighten out my knees rather quickly - and the Mii leaps into the air.

But I have been too eager. As I gasp in horror, the Mii lands on top of the snapping bear-trap and falls to it's inevitable doom in the bottomless pit. The Miis at the brick tower cheer even more frantically than before - clearly they side with the bear-trap - as the game mocks me by giving me the option to retry. I dare not.

At the activity menu, I navigate towards something more in my comfort zone: jogging. Basic jogging - yes, this should be promising. After the usual five second loading sequence, I am presented with another text-box, explaining that I should follow another Mii, and jog with a steady rhythm. As I do so, going nowhere fast, the other Mii runs ahead and starts waving at me, the cheeky bastard. Why, don't think I can outrun him, does he? I jog nowhere even faster, and zoom past the other Mii. However my Mii no longer knows where to run, and the game instructs me to jog more slowly. I ignore it. I am running now, and I cannot be stopped. Then, suddenly, the legs of my Mii flail out, and my virtual self tubles forward, rolling down the uniformly brown-coloured path into a white oblivion. When I return to the world again, the game sternly informs me that the best results will be attained by running nowhere fast at a steady rhythm. I do so, and trail the Mii guide in defeat.

Some time later, my Mii nervously speeding ahead from a Wii board reading failure once in a while, I reach the beginning of the trail again. Where the game rewards me with one star for my effort, and another impossibly cheery victory gesture. The Mii guide looks over it's shoulder with a smug look, though the audience has their eyes only on me. It is a chilling vision, but certainly one that explains the realities of the world effectively to you even in it's graphical simplicity: your cheering squad cannot see how many calories the FitPig has counted, nor do they care. They simply cheer at anything.

Wii Fit now leaves me to privately contemplate my advance in the training program as the day ends. Tomorrow, it will once again measure my weight, and suggest for me another set of humiliating exercises to reach my goal of keeping my weight score unchanged for the next four weeks. Does the game know I am cheating on it by running a few kilometers every other day? I wonder.

Wii Fit is a combined training and time-wasting simulator. It should be good for getting your pulse up, train your balance, as well as strain your leg-muscles somewhat more than when playing any other computer-game. It also can track your weight and BMI, to discourage you from indulging in too many cheese-pucks and milk-shakes between each time you start the game. The layout is positively chaotic, and the controls are not much better - but somehow girls and children figure it out anyway.


fleinn's avatar
Community review by fleinn (August 08, 2010)

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zippdementia posted August 08, 2010:

I like the overly serious tone you took with this review: it's the tone of someone who was actually frightened by WiiFit and I think it's pretty hilarious.

Very enjoyable read.
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fleinn posted August 08, 2010:

:) thanks, Zipp. really does sound sincere, doesn't it? ..I mean, it's.. not like standing there and waving around in front of the tv scares me to death, or anything.. *cough* ...that'd be.. silly..

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