Wii Fit Plus - WII - Preview

E3 2009 PreviewE3 2008 GameZone Previews

With over 15 million Wii Fits on the market, it wasn't a surprise to hear that Nintendo would be making another. What might surprise you is that this game is not a full-fledged sequel but is in fact an upgrade that will ultimately replace the current Wii Fit at retail. Players who own the original Wii Fit will be able to purchase the Wii Fit Plus disc by itself for a reportedly "low" price (how low Nintendo would not reveal). Those who don't have the game, however, can purchase Wii Fit Plus – which includes all of the original game's content plus some new features and mini-games – with the Balance Board. Once Wii Fit Plus hits stores, the original disc will no longer be packed with the board.

What will the 15 million Wii Fit owners get if they decide to upgrade? New exercises, a smoother workout routine (all interruptions and stopping points can be removed), and several new mini-games. The former two were not shown at E3, but Nintendo was eager to promote the mini-games, which include those of balance, running and mathematics.

Tilt City

This game uses both the Wii remote and the Balance Board to test your balancing skills. Played from a 2D perspective, there are three platforms on the screen – one on the top (for your remote) and two on the bottom (for your board). Three colored pipes rest at the bottom of the level. Their color is significant because the game is about to drop a ball onto your top platform. Each ball is assigned a different color, and you must guide each ball into the pipes that match their colors. In the beginning, you only have to worry about one ball, which isn't all that difficult. But after that, the game begins to drop two and three balls at a time. Soon you'll be tilting your hands and feet in opposite directions, feverishly leaning your body from side to side, hoping to guide each ball into the appropriate pipe.

Wii Fit Plus Wii screenshots

Perfect 10

Three balls appear on screen, each with a different number. The game tells you to count to 10. You do so, adding up the numbers until you've reached your goal. What do you do next? Swing your hips, of course! Perfect 10 is a mini-game with simple mind challenges and a hip-flinging workout that'll make you look like you've had one too many cups of coffee. But hey, at least you're not standing there in a crowd of thousands flapping your arms like a chicken...

Bird's Eye Bulls-Eye

...Oh wait, you'll do that too. Bird's Eye Bulls-Eye is perhaps the most ridiculous-sounding mini-game in the history of mini-games. But somehow, someway, through magical powers that defy world logic (or because the Balance Board is unbelievably sensitive. Probably that), this mini-game – which tells you to flap your arms as if you were a chicken – actually works. On screen, your Mii is represented as a man in a chicken suit. The goal is to flap senselessly, causing your Mii to fly through the air, and land on various checkpoints. Conceptually, this is a quirky game for spectator amusement (yes, those who play it will get laughed at, especially at public venues like E3. Remember that if it appears at your mall kiosk in the fall). But mechanically it is pretty darn amazing. How does the Balance Board know that you're flapping your arms? Is it detecting the slight movement in your body, which trickles down to your feet? If so, that is amazing. If not, then the technology has me stumped, which is amazing in a whole other way.

Wii Fit Plus Wii screenshots

Obstacle Course

Much more than the running experience of the original Wii Fit, this obstacle course challenges you to cross moving platforms and avoid large balls while making your way to the finish line. Rather than stick a Wii remote in your pocket, you'll run by walking (in place) on the Balance Board. There's a time limit and the game is not too forgiving; if you get hit by a ball or fall off a platform, you'll be sent right back to the beginning.

Segway Circuit

This sponsored mini-game is exactly as it sounds: a virtual re-creation of the Segway scooter. Hold the Wii remote sideways to turn it into the scooter's handlebars and stand on the board. No lean your body forward to move along, lean and tilt the handlebars to turn, and explore the Wii Sports Resort hub without having to walk a single step.

 

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