When jumping straight into the Kinect launch lineup, it was immediately apparent that there was an abundance of fitness titles. Offering a wide set from several different publishers such as Electronic Arts’ EA Sports Active 2.0, THQ’s The Biggest Loser: Ultimate Workout and Majesco Entertainment’s Zumba Fitness, the Kinect is gaming heaven for gamers who are looking to exercise. Having said that, Your Shape: Fitness Evolved turns out to be a quality offering.
Intending on improving the daily routine for the normal day-to-day gamer who sits on his/her couch of playing hours on end of any specific video game, Your Shape: Fitness Evolved provides an excellent entry point into the life of exercise. If gamers aren’t mildly inspired to spend 20-25 minutes of their day on attempting to get their body healthy and/or fit due to the inspiration of a video game, then let’s face it: taking the big step into the territory of gyms and personal trainers will never happen. This may be the one chance a gamer gets to be active and Fitness Evolved isn’t an enduring process.
Your Shape: Fitness Evolved is as smart of a video game as it is a functioning one. It collects personal information such as age, weight, height, and gauges the length of each limb. Have you ever wanted to know your wingspan? Then Fitness Evolved will help find out this critical – or maybe not so important – information in a roundabout way.
To kick-start off the program, players will take a quick quiz about their goals and interests, along with proceeding with a cardio and muscular endurance assessment. It’s simple, and thankfully so; it didn’t need to be a complicated process, especially since it’s aimed at casuals who want to jump right into the title rather than sit – actually, they’re forced to stand – through countless menus and tutorials.
There are a handful of modes to play through such as Fitness Classes and Personal Training modes along with Gym Games. Personal Training has players working alongside a virtual trainer who will show off moves the players have to mirror. If players leave the green zone that is assigned by the Kinect, then they’ll have to quickly correct their mistake. When compared to the fitness titles of the Wii, I had less time fighting with the game’s recognition of movements or having to move devices on my body parts to work accurately.
Fitness Classes are much more about taking classes – what a shocker! – such as one for Cardio Boxing. It’s never a complicated process, but learning the movements and replicating them is easy to learn. For Gym Games, it takes the standard route of employing mini-games – four in total – that can be played with up to other four other players. Mimicking the movement of the hula-hoop is one of the four, along with punching bricks. Gym Games is nothing too exciting, but it is an okay change of pace from yoga, no doubt.
As for the camera recognition of the player, there were only a few times that the controller and game didn’t sync up. There was a small amount of lag, but it’s not to the point that makes it unplayable. It’s best to play Fitness Evolved with suitable exercise clothes such as gym shorts and tank tops. Avoid baggy and several layers of clothing since Fitness Evolved rarely tells the player what they are doing wrong when it comes to not matching what the player performs. But then again, that should be expected coming into a fitness and conditioning video game that the clothing needs to be appropriate.
To top it all off, Your Shape: Fitness Evolved has one of the most graceful presentations of any video game on the Xbox 360. It’s inviting, colorful and relaxing. It may not be the most motivating environment, since, let’s go ahead and admit it, the visuals are inspiring for a good back massage or pedicure. Regardless, the graphics get the job done and stand out like no other Kinect or 360 title.
I’m hard pressed to find another fitness title that looks like Your Shape: Fitness Evolved, but then again, the title does a poor job at implementing stretches and warm-ups into the exercise routines. Health and fitness aficionados will want to use Your Shape: Fitness Evolved after they have stretched their muscles out or else they may suffer the consequences of subpar performances.