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EA SPORTS Active - WII - Review

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Posted by: jkdmedia

Review Rating 8.0 Great
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Last year Nintendo released the Wii Fit, which helped motivate people to exercise more. The developers did this by combining the fun of video-games with the "joy" of working out. This game proved to be hit and it flew off store shelves. It took many people months to finally obtain the game. Ever since Wii Fit has been released, there has been a flood of exercise games made for the Nintendo Wii. The latest exercise game is entitled EA Sports Active, and it does more to keep players active and might help players lose weight better than Wii Fit.

The focus of EA Sports Active is to give high-intensity workouts to get players to reach a specific set of goals, such as calorie loss. The game features more than 25 exercises and drills and they fall into these categories: cardio, upper body, lower body, and sports. There are many preset workouts that will target specific areas, and players can customize it even more by changing the duration and intensity of each workout. The exercises can range from running on a track, doing squats, boxing, tennis, inline skating, dancing, and much more. The whole goal of this game is to help players lose weight, burn calories, and generally get in better shape.

When players select an exercise to do the game brings up a very nicely done instructional video on the proper technique of that particular exercise. Each exercise has its own video, which can be skipped, so players can get the best workout from each exercise. After a while the videos can annoying, but it is nice to see that the developers really wanted to make sure players knew the proper form for each exercise to get the most benefit from it.


Playing with the family

The game comes with two accessories that make this game stand out: a leg strap that will keep the nunchuck around your leg and a weight resistance band. Some players might have some issues with the resistance band as it is doesn't provide as much resistance as gamers might like, but overall it gets the job done. For taller players the cord between the Wii-mote and nunchuk might prove to be an obstacle when the nunchuk is in the holder, as it is not very long and will make some exercises difficult. Even with these two small complaints, the accessories work really well. If players have the Balance Board they will be able to use this in many of the exercises as well. Having these three accessories really makes the game feel very interactive and makes it a lot of fun to play.

Once players turn this game on for the first time they will be tasked with creating their own onscreen avatar. After this is complete they will go into the main menu that has a journal that keeps up with various stats as players work out. Another option is the preset work-outs that were mentioned earlier. Player's can choose between many different preset work-out routines or make up one.

The last choice is to join the 30 Day Challenge; which is the main draw of this game. Once players select this choice, they will be given an option to choose between a male or female trainer that will provide 20-minute workouts over the course of the month. As the days go by the workouts get more intense and players will really start to "feel the burn." What makes this mode really great is that each day the trainers really change up the exercises so each day will feel different from the previous. This really helps break up repetition and makes players want to continue playing to see what the next day's exercises will be. During the course of the 30 days, players will be able to track how they are doing in their journal, and add additional facts such as their food intake and other daily routines players might partake in, which helps players' overall score. This is a great mode that will keep players coming back to try it over again.


Feel the burn

The graphics for EA Sports Active are very simple. The visuals are very cartoonish feeling, especially the demo's showing players how to do the various exercises. The on-screen avatar that players create also looks cartoonish and there are very few options to choose from when building it. Even though it does look more realistic than players Mii, it would have been nice to have a few more options to try to make the character look closer to the players. The various locations that players will exercise at are very sunny and have a very nice and tranquil atmosphere.

The voice-over work for the game is very good. The voice actors spoke loudly and very clearly so not to miss any instructions. This made the game enjoyable as players could always accurately follow the various instructions given since it is easily understood what needs to be done. The only issue with the sound department is the soundtrack the developers choose for the game. Instead of loading it up with current tunes to work out with, the game is chalked full of very generic music that borders on the edge of bland. This is very disappointing because when working out, nothing gets the blood pumping faster than hearing the latest music.

This game also offers players the opportunity to work out with a friend. The only issue here is that they will have to have their own workout equipment: resistance band and nunchuk holder, in order to really get the full effect of working out together.

EA Sports Active is rated for everyone.

Review Scoring Details for EA Sports Active

Gameplay 8.4
The work-outs will really have players sweating in no time. The only issue is the controls are not as tight as they should have been.

Graphics: 7.9 
The graphics for this game are a bit cartoonish. This is fine, but it is weird to see various videos with real humans and then see the on-screen cartoonish-looking avatar. The various locations where players workout is always sunny and bright which creates a very nice workout environment.

Sound: 7.8 
The voice-over work is done really nice. The music is very generic, players will want to mute them and turn on their own tunes while they workout.

Difficulty: Easy 

Concept: 7.9
EA Sports Active has several exercises that will really have players work up a sweat. The resistant bands are a little weak, but still get the job done.

Multiplayer N/A 
At the time of this review I did not get a chance to test out the multiplayer.

Overall: 8.0
EA Sports Active is a really great first effort game. The developers at EA Sports laid a really nice foundation for the next game that will inevitable come in the series. Hopefully they will tighten up the controls as this will make for a better game. If you are looking for a fun game that will help you work up a sweat and lose some calories check this game out.

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