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Wii Aches - Couch Potatoes Working it Up

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the those-rabbids-won't-kill-themselves dept.

Wii 336

Genocaust writes "While the new controller on the Wii is proving to be a success, it's turning out to be more effort than some die-hard couch potatoes bargained for. The Wall Street Journal reports on the newest workout regime for nerds." From the article: "In Rochester, Minn., Jeremy Scherer and his wife spent three hours playing tennis and bowling, two of the games included with the Wii. Mr. Scherer says he managed to improve his scores — at the cost of shoulders and back that were still aching the next day. 'I was using muscles I hadn't used in a while,' says Mr. Scherer, a computer programmer who describes himself as 'not very active.' Mr. Scherer is vowing nightly 'Wii workouts' to get in better shape." "Bunnies Don't Know What To Do With Cows", in Rayman, is another guaranteed way to get your arm aching. Cows are heavy, and it takes a lot of energy to throw them.

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FIRST WII FISH POST! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985416)

I AM A FISH!

Re:FIRST WII FISH POST! (4, Funny)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986068)

"I AM A FISH!"

Mr. Rimmer, this is the 11th time you've failed the astro-navigation exam. Don't you think you're just not cut out to be an officer?

Re:FIRST WII FISH POST! (1)

Spokehedz (599285) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986204)

I bet he blames it on Aliens. Smeg-head.

Or was it the Quaagars? Or the Dispair Squid making Rimmer be so pathetic?

What I woulden't pay for some of that Sexual Magnetism Virus though.

Its a choice (5, Insightful)

Shados (741919) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985420)

Honestly, with the way the control scheme works, you CAN be a couch patatoe and play the Wii just fine.

Its just boring :) When you really get into it is when the workout starts, but its also when the fun begins.

Hummm... (1, Interesting)

TheSHAD0W (258774) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985488)

Maybe it'd be worth coming out with an alternative controller, something you'd need to put your whole body into in order to operate it. Say, put it on a weighted stick about 2 feet long.

Re:Hummm... (5, Funny)

Umbrae (866097) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985534)

And hey, maybe a pad you can put on the ground! I'll make a game called track n field. It'll be great. Or how about a glove you can wear? That'd be neat too.

Wiimote + Dancemat? (4, Interesting)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985588)

Maybe it'd be worth coming out with an alternative controller, something you'd need to put your whole body into in order to operate it.

You could make a dance game with extra detail, maybe. Two wiimotes, one in each hand, and a dance mat connected as a standard controller.

Come to think of it, that wouldn't only work for dance games. How about a fighting game? Wii Boxing with fancy footwork...

Re:Wiimote + Dancemat? (4, Interesting)

timeOday (582209) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985974)

You do have to wonder, will Nintendo come out with sensors you can wear on (i.e.) your ankles that use the same technology? I was going to buy a Dance Dance Revolution game but never did because there are all kinds of problems with the dance pads (except for the metal ones that cost a couple hundred). Think about it, if you jump on your controller it's bound to wear out. But doing it optically or with gyros or however this thing works should last a lot longer.

Re:Wiimote + Dancemat? (1, Redundant)

timeOday (582209) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985996)

I would much prefer something like little WiiRemotes strapped to the ankes to replace dancemats. I was going to buy DDR but I read about a lot of problems with the mats. And if you think about it, jumping on your controller has to be hard on it (unless you pay a couple hundred for a metal pad). Remote sensing (like the WiiRemote) might avoid all the mechanical Dance Pad problems.

Re:Wiimote + Dancemat? (1)

Lynxara (775657) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986178)

Remote sensing would be highly impractical to DDR as the game stands. It's basically a giant game of Simon with your feet, so you really need a button analogue to step on. It's true most commercial $30 dance pads right now are lacking compared to the strain DDR gameplay can put on them, but this is one ill the Wiimote can't cure.

Re:Wiimote + Dancemat? (4, Funny)

dangitman (862676) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986226)

Something I would prefer would be motion sensor controllers, fastened to the feet, to be a substitute for mat-style dance controllers. I read of many diificulties with the dance pads. If one ponders it, leaping upon your interface is going to increase wear significantly (unless you pay $200 for one made with more durable materials). Wireless sensing will possibly avoid all the physical problems of human/dance interfaces.

Re:Hummm... (2, Interesting)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985876)

I suppose you could have a Bat'leth game [krakowstudios.com] , with the controller attached to an actual bat'leth. That would give a good work out. Maybe an American Gladiator pugil stick game as well?

Re:Its a choice (4, Insightful)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985516)

And Congrats to Nintendo for making that the way it is. Maybe it's just a side-effect and not intended, but making it more fun to be active is a great thing for everyone, young and old.

I just wish I could get my hands on one. I'm not willing to stand in long lines or camp out my local eb this week, hoping to get a chance at one... I'm hoping they'll be fairly easy to get within the next few weeks. I'm not holding my breath, though.

Re:Its a choice (1, Offtopic)

doormat (63648) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985590)

The launch was 450,000 units. NoA says they're going to be shipping 250,000 units per week after until the end of the year. So we might see units on the shelf the week before Christmas (before all the procrastinators get in gear).

And even when you get the Wii, the accessories are in short supply - I've been looking all week and nothing. No nunchucks, no classic controllers, no component cables, nothing. I did manage to get a second Wiimote, but nothing else.

Re:Its a choice (2)

soleblaze (628864) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985952)

I've seen plenty of accessories at places like walmart and target. However, the component cables are only available online through nintendo. Wii Component Cables [nintendo.com] and it looks like they're back in stock.

Re:Its a choice (5, Funny)

Shados (741919) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985596)

You have no idea. I tried to avoid launch, because I thought it was stupid to camp for a console. Ironicaly, camping for it probably would have been the easiest way to get one. Now retail stores have no clue when they get them, so you have to head to the stores (if you call, its too late by the time you get there) and just randomly ask face to face every so often. I live near a bunch of stores (like 10-15 minutes on foot), and don't have a car (personal choice, since i'm a programmer and always in front of my computer, its the only way I'll ever get off my ass, so I decided not to get a car for the time being). I've never been walking this much in my entire life.

The Wii literally made me lose 5-10 pounds in a week, and I didn't even BUY one yet.

Not my choice (-1, Troll)

NineNine (235196) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985712)

I think that this is a good example of market segmentation. Lots of little kids are gonna LOVE the Nintendo. And why shouldn't they? There are lots of little kid games (Mario*, etc.) and kids would love to pretend they're swinging a sword or some such stuff, jumping around the room for hours on end.

But, you gotta realize that there's another side to the coin. There are many, many, many people who work a long day and want to come home and drink/get high and sit down to relax with a video game. I can think of tons of people (myself included) who get plenty of exercise every day, and certainly don't want to do any more when they get home. I, for one, look forward to vegging out in front of a PS3 (once they add back in the "rumble" effect, which I'm sure they will after the inevitable outcry from current PS2 owners).

Re:Not my choice (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985804)

and kids would love to pretend they're swinging a sword or some such stuff

Unlike us: Slashdot-reading-adults who would never want to do anything as silly and embarassing as waving a remote pretending it was a sword. Though, if instead of sword you got a lightsaber... ;)

Re:Not my choice (5, Insightful)

digidave (259925) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985914)

Stop with the "Nintendo is for kids" thing. It's not true and honestly, unless you do manual labor for a living (lifting servers and running cable doesn't count) you shouldn't be physically tired when you get home. If you are too tired to play a Wii game then you are probably the one most in need of the little bit of exercise you would get from playing it.

The Wii is the only one of the new systems that is made for adults. Single men under thirty don't count as adults. I don't know one man who wants to come home from work and play adolescent games where you shoot other people. Those games are still pushing the same formula that they did a decade ago when most of us adults got tired of them. I'd rather play a golf or baseball game than Gears of War for the same reason I'd rather spend Saturday playing real golf than I would hanging out with friends.

Make no mistake, the 360 and PS3 are game systems for adolescent boys, not adults. The Wii is the only system that offers gameplay that might be entertaining for an adult or his family. The fact that my six year old son will also find entertaining games on the Wii is a bonus so I won't have to buy a dedicated kids system like PS3.

Re:Not my choice (4, Insightful)

Shados (741919) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985990)

Thanks for typing out what I was thinking :)

Fact is, what constitutes a "kids game" is quite subjective, and people in different age groups tend to feel differently about it. For example, most people who think of Mario as a "little kids game" are probably under 25 (I'm 24 myself, and disagree with Mario, etc being for kids... Ecco Jr. for the Genesis was a little kids game. Its a total other ball park).

Ironicaly, the previous poster mentionned coming back home wanting to get high and drink, which (if we're going by stereotypes, in the same way one can associate the Wii with kid games), tends to be associated with hormonal frat college teens, a group which are seen as "kids" by about anyone above 30 and a little less.

So honestly, away with the stupid stereotypes. Fun knows no age.

Re:Not my choice (3, Informative)

freakified (957821) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986078)

As a college student, I can safely say that many Nintendo games, both old and new (Super Smash Brothers Melee and SNES Mario Kart, to name a couple) are quite popular in that particular age range.

Personally, I'd say the only legitimate "Nintendo is for kids" argument would be concerning the online play, where your identity is hidden to the extent that you aren't even allowed to exchange text messages with randomly assigned opponents. Great for kids, of course, but for the older crowd, a system like that tends to get a bit tedious.

Re:Not my choice (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986162)

I whole heartedly agree with you. Except I am not legally within the age range you speak of as being adult. Well said all through though.

Re:Its a choice (2, Informative)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985816)

Honestly, with the way the control scheme works, you CAN be a couch patatoe and play the Wii just fine.

Its just boring :)


It's been the subject of at least one comic:

http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2006/11/13 [penny-arcade.com]

Re:Its a choice (1)

Shados (741919) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985882)

Actualy, it is the comic I had in mind when i posted :)

A solution (4, Funny)

causality (777677) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985422)

Maybe this could be a solution for Bovine America. If only they could come up with a video game controller that removed excess complacency and enabled one to recognize propaganda, then we might even go back to having a free country again!

Re:A solution (4, Insightful)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985472)

Well, for Americans who do go outside there is only 1 video game: Frogger. Very, very few cities are designed with pedestrians being something other than poor and/or drunk people, so those of us that do walk/ride bikes everywhere constantly have to basically try to play a giant game of frogger every time we go out. And trust me, the SUV driving redneck isn't much smarter behind the wheel than any of those cars in Frogger, and even less considerate.

Re:A solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985572)

if you are really interested in real-life frogger action you need to cross the Roosevelt Boulevard [wikipedia.org] in Philly, this 12 lane monster is a pedestrian [student-voices.org] nightmare.

Re:A solution (3, Interesting)

udderly (890305) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985720)

Pffft...if you want some advanced Frogger action, I suggest that you go to Beirut. In Beirut, not only do you risk your life crossing the street due to the widespread disregard for traffic laws and signals, but when initiating your street cross, you're not even allowed to look at the oncoming traffic. To do so is considered unmanly.

The frightening thing is that I'm not joking.

Re:A solution (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985636)

It depends on where you are in the USA. I've just got back from spending a couple of months over there. In Salt Lake City, everything is far apart so you really need a car, but if you are walking (I was staying half an hour's walk from where I was working, so it wasn't too far) then it's quite possible. Intersections that are traffic light controlled are easy to cross, and ones that aren't seem to give right of way to pedestrians; if it looks like a pedestrian is about to cross, then all the cars will stop. On the whole, drivers seemed very polite towards those without cars.

In New York City, the situation was somewhat different. There are traffic lights, but I'm not convinced anyone actually observed them. The strategy for crossing a road in NYC seems to be for all of the pedestrians to huddle on the curb. Gradually, the ones at the back push the ones at the front out into the middle of the road. When there are too many people in the road for the average car to drive over, it becomes the pedestrians turn to use the road, until their density thins enough to allow cars across again.

Re:A solution (2)

John Nowak (872479) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985722)

I've lived in NYC for years and never experienced anything like that. :-)

Re:A solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985958)

Go back to France, hippie.

How long (5, Insightful)

Hennell (1005107) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985432)

before they make a actual exercise themed game?

Re:How long (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985458)

I suspect the next mario party type game will do this. Stuff like "do 10 jumping jacks" would be easy.

Re:How long (4, Interesting)

MuNansen (833037) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985462)

Wii Sports has a Fitness function, sort of like Brain Age, that's meant to help you stay consistent, but it's not very in-depth. A more in-depth version could do a lot. And the parent is right that the cow throwing game in Rayman gives you a MAJOR workout.

Re:How long (4, Interesting)

sporkme (983186) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985580)

Remember the original Nintendo's game mat, the PowerPad [videogamecentral.com] ? You could use it with an Olimpics themed game and compete in track and field events. I recall kneeling on the floor and smacking the pressure spots with my hands to achieve unrealistic scores.

I think maybe something like this may make a venture into the trendy excercise market. If they can sell a big ball for a hundred bucks, they can sell a Wii controller too.

This begs the now cliche question: Why not just go outside and play the actual sport? Alas, there is not a chance in hell.

Re:How long (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985766)

Duh, we're wimpy geeks. Going outside to play the actual sport will make us a laughing stock. I'd much rather look like a fool in the privacy of my living room.

Re:How long (1)

LindseyJ (983603) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985806)

Not everyone lives someplace where they can go play a sport. In suburbia, maybe. If you're lucky. In an urban sprawl such as where I live? That is something for which there is not a chance in hell. The romantic images you see in movies and commercials with little kids playing baseball in an alleyway or even the middle of the street are just that - unrealistic romantic images. I know for a fact that the cops would put a stop to that in a heartbeat (most likely while a bank is being robbed down the street -- "It's outside my jurisdiction!").

Even aside from that, videogame sports don't just simulate the sport, they simulate the players. I've always been a scrawny runt of a guy. I play with my kids, of course, but I'm no athelete, and I'll never be one. Trying to organize the sorts of impromptu sporting get-togethers you see and read about, where a bunch of burly manly-men all go out to a (convieniently located) open field and throw around the good 'ol, all-American pigskin while drinking some good 'ol, all-American Miller lite (tm) doesn't seem likely for me.

Re:How long (1)

Ruff_ilb (769396) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985808)

Because sports are outside and not in air-conditioned comfort, and require specialized equipment and other people to play with, I suppose.

Re:How long (4, Informative)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986134)

"This begs the now cliche question: Why not just go outside and play the actual sport?"

Mainly because it's not the most convenient thing in the world to arrange a sport. More than one person is needed to play. Where I work, for example, half my coworkers have a minimum of an hour long drive home AND they have family to go home to. It's not easy to arrange an hour or two to go somewhere and play a sport. On top of this, this time of year, the only way they could do this when there's daylight is to arrange it on the weekend. For our type of work, weekends often mean catching up on chores.

Thanks to the Wii everybody can just go home and play. Two of my coworkers have arranged to play via the net (which, btw, I didn't know was possible...) *and* they've gotten their wives involved. Where I work, the Wii has proven to be both a workout advice and a social event. I don't know if that'll last, but man, it's sure looking encouraging so far.

There is one for Xbox... (1)

dolson (634094) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985612)

It's called YourSelf Fitness, and it isn't so much a game as a virtual trainer, I guess... It's strange.

Re:How long (2, Insightful)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985634)

Dance Dance Revolution not good enough for you? The last thing we need is a Jane Fonda exercise video game.

Re:How long (2, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986144)

The last thing we need is a Jane Fonda exercise video game.

      Yeah, my grand-dad might be interested in that. How about someone younger...?

Re:How long (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985680)

I've long hoped that they would make some realistic dancing game in which you strap a Wiimote to each limb and it infers the absolute location of each Wiimote from the sensor bar and the accelerometer time histories. Then it would give you dance instructions somehow (either with a "dancer" you have to model, or, similar to the Eyetoy's Kinetic, symbols appear that dictate what you have to do) that you have to follow with your arms and legs.

Unfortunately, I haven't seen any game yet use this kind of "dead reckoning" to figure out the absolute position of the Wiimotes, despite what the Wikipedia article [wikipedia.org] says it does. I mean, I've seen games detect your acceleration, and I've seen games detect where you're pointing, but not together in a way that would sense your absolute positiong. Yet you can see how with just a little trigonometry, you can infer the Wiimote's absolute position when it's pointing at the sensor bar by using the apparent locations of the sensor bar lights in the Wiimote's camera and the inclination of the Wiimote (which it independently senses) and then integrating through the accelerations. (You would, of course, need to continually recalibrate each Wiimote by pointing it at the sensor bar -- a little stretch for the Wiimotes on your legs!)

Brilliant -- like DDR but for the arms (2, Funny)

retrosteve (77918) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985452)

Imagine this as the start of a trend -- play video games and still get in shape.

Re:Brilliant -- like DDR but for the arms (5, Funny)

neoform (551705) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985518)

I'm going to have to disagree with this article..

This article assumes that nerds are somehow NOT used to making quick/small jerking motions with their wrists.. I mean.. common.

Re:Brilliant -- like DDR but for the arms (1)

paniq (833972) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986030)

hahahahhaha :D

Re:Brilliant -- like DDR but for the arms (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16986042)

mean.. common.

Common what? Oh, did you mean "Come on?"

Re:Brilliant -- like DDR but for the arms (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985560)

"Imagine this as the start of a trend -- play video games and still get in shape."

It is amazing how quickly you can get out of shape in a few years, and not even notice it!!

It really hit me hard a couple-three years back....a girlfriend of mine was in town, and we were at a bar that we discovered had a real, old-fashioned air hockey table in the back...the full sized monster. I'd not see one of these since I was a kid.

Well, we played a few games...and about the end of the 2nd one...we were both getting winded....and the next day, both of us had extremely sore arms and shoulders. Sad really.....

I'm trying to find time to get into the gym now...with a new job and all, it is tough, but, it does go to show that some games that require physical movement can illustrate to you how bad a shape you are in......something "12oz curls" just ain't gonna help. I think that a video game that has physical movement as a part of play might just be a GREAT idea...and get the little couch potato fat kids off the couch..and moving around.

We need to do something....paranoid parents today won't let them out to play and get exercise like we did....

Re:Brilliant -- like DDR but for the arms (1)

laurens (151193) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985696)

We need to do something....paranoid parents today won't let them out to play and get exercise like we did....
Please tell me you're joking. Seriously.

Re:Brilliant -- like DDR but for the arms (1)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985656)

How about playing video games and going to the gym?

It's been done (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985688)

The reverse has already been done. "Video games" built into exercise equipment. Many treadmills have a simulated terrain that you run on. The terrain is shown on a really cheesy GDU composed of a grid of LEDs. Other machines, like rowing machines sometimes have an electronic competitor that you race against.

Re:It's been done (1)

retrosteve (77918) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985842)

Well, it has, but it hasn't. If Wii really can give you a workout while providing an engaging video gamer experience, it has the advantages of:

* Working at home on your couch, not at the gym
* Requiring no big dust-gathering investment
* Actually being in millions of homes

This leads me to think it could be both new and different.

I did that with Perfect Dark 64 (1)

kdark1701 (791894) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985878)

When I got Perfect Dark back in 2000, I got INTO shape. I played it so much that I forgot to eat.

Shhhhhh...... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985478)

Can you hearthe sound of lawsuits approaching ?

More than unworked muscle aches? (3, Insightful)

loconet (415875) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985490)

It has been discussed to death that the wiimote could be the answer for so many overweight gamers (which is a great thing) but how easy is it to damage something (ie: back, arms, neck, tendons, etc) due to prolonged usage of this device? I don't own a wii but how accurate to "real" sports movements is it? Do players have to do unnatural movements at times in order to get things "working"?

Re:More than unworked muscle aches? (1)

radar bunny (140304) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985524)

or, how long before someone decides to sue nintendo because they've sustained some minor injury from excessive use. I know its stupid, you know its stupid, but twelve jurers did award how much over a spilled cup of coffee?

Re:More than unworked muscle aches? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985586)

I've used the Wii. I am also a tennis player and was delighted to see that the real world tennis motions match up with the game as expected. As far as injury goes, I think you are just looking at repetative type injuries that can't be avoided. Since there is no actual contact with anything and therefore no resistance I find it hard to believe that anyone could get injured simply from waving the remote around in a natural manner.

Re:More than unworked muscle aches? (1)

PainBot (844233) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986106)

Since sports movements are not always safe, this can be bad too. I mean, take weight lifting for example. If you don't do it properly, you'll hurt your back. Hence sports movements can be bad. Well here too, if you don't stand correctly or watch your position, eventually you might get hurt. But that's also true with watching tv or aving sex.

Re:More than unworked muscle aches? (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986192)

No more unatural than using a computer all day I would think.

Frustrating news for the young Sebastion (3, Funny)

goddidit (988396) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985496)

Since the wii has wifi, Sebastion isn't allowed to play with it.

Wii are out of shape (4, Interesting)

destine (109885) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985530)

I mean really really out of shape. I've known this for awhile, but it's nice that I have something I can do that I enjoy that actually gives me a bit of a workout. My SO and I are playing a lot of Tennis together. It's less of a learning curve and more practical to play a few best of 3 games of tennis every night than to go out and do it in cold wet seattle. And surprisingly, we can work up a sweat after a half hour to an hour of tennis.

The bowling is really easy on the arms. Baseball can be hard on the pitching arm. Boxing is a real work out. And golf is kind of relaxing and is more of a precision game. Several of the Raving Rabbids games have tested our metal. I seem to be really good at the running and rhythm games, and my SO is great at the shooting and fine manipulation games.

All in all, it was fun to notice that little bit of pain in the back of the shoulder that lets you know you got some exercise. Something I rarely feel I can do much of anymore, which is really just a mental block and lazyness on my part. Still, if they could figure out some way to get your legs to workout in this games, it would be something better for youth to do besides the regular sit and stare video games that I grew up with.

Re:Wii are out of shape (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985606)

"tested our metal"

metal -> mettle

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=mettle&x= 0&y=0 [reference.com]

Re:Wii are out of shape (2, Interesting)

Coriolis (110923) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985704)

Oh, I don't know, I sort of like it. It's an eggcorn [lascribe.net]

Excellent! (2, Interesting)

jmagar.com (67146) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985538)

This may help the obesity rate among kids. It has been climbing at an alarming pace, and now that we have a workout program disguised as a video game... Things are bound to get better.

Re:Excellent! (2, Insightful)

brkello (642429) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985860)

You have to be kidding. Using a wiimote will not get you in to shape. If you want kids to get in shape, tell them to go outside or put them in sports.

Re:Excellent! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985896)

Video game workouts are old news. Dance Dance Revolution came out almost a decade ago, and the Power Pad was ten years before that.

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16986006)

They'll still be obese. They'll just have huge wrist muscles from flicking their wrist every time they have to swing the sword in Zelda.

Hasn't been a problem so far... (4, Informative)

RyanFenton (230700) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985546)

I've been playing quite a bit exploring the landscape of the latest Zelda game. As long as I hold my wrists strait while playing, I've found it a much lighter stress than using a mouse. The closest thing to an ache I've gotten was while playing a precision flying minigame for more than a half-hour - having to hold the pointer perfectly still to pop these stationary balloons as the camera pans around your character's flying figure is akin to trying to hold your hand out in front of your body for a similar time... extremely easy at first, but your muscles do tense from the focus on a position. Sitting cross-legged on a chair, and occasionally resting my elbow on my leg pretty much fixes that issue with me though. Swinging both controllers, almost an endless number of ways and times though, hasn't itself been much of a stress at all, even now at the end of the game, and after going through a 50-floor optional battle-fest.

Nintendo has done a very good job so far making a comfortable and light controller. Players concerned about wrist or arm stress should compare against mouse usage, and be willing to take breaks if they have to do the same when using a mouse. Don't be afraid to rest your arm on something while playing, or to be creative with 'lazy' ways of performing the same action if it must be repeated. And, if it's really an issue, consider getting some cheap light weights (1-5lbs) and do some light exercise while watching TV at night or something - this works for even the oldest or the youngest people out there, from my experience.

Ryan Fenton

Re:Hasn't been a problem so far... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985778)

Hey Ryan, so how do you like this machine ? Is the hardware solid ? I have a Gamecube and an N64 and the hardware seems pretty good. I have a few other consoles from different vendors, and the hardware seems cheap and delicate. Another thing that I personally feel about Nintendo is that their games are just fun. I have a Sega Dreamcast, and one thing about that console is that the games "just werent fun". Is the Wii like that ? I want to buy one, but am probably out of luck until after Xmas because of the low availability (?).

Re:Hasn't been a problem so far... (3, Informative)

RyanFenton (230700) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986098)

The machine is actually very simple - in appearance, it's just a CD drive with power and eject button, plus the chord to the TV. The only unique aspect on the outset is the sensor bar and Wii remote+nunchuck. You put those together, and it's a VERY portable party gaming unit. The only vulnerable aspect is the chord on the sensor bar's wire that plugs into the back of the Wii - it's thinner than most chords I've ever seen, so would have to be kept out of reach of kids or animals that would be tempted to pull on or bite it, or out of an area where someone may trip on it - it would snap quite easily in such a situation.

Once it's connected and running, it's a very simple yet effective user interface. The only configuration choice at the outset involving the remote is if the sensor bar is above/below the TV. The controller doesn't have to be aiming at the TV, it just has to be 'seen' by the sensor bar to register movement - orientation and other aspects seem to work wonderfully relative to having the remote in front of the TV. Intuitively, any user of the remote can quickly learn the 'sweet spot' of having the remote in the right place to get the cursor where they want. You can go into the console's options menu to get to sensitivity options, and even see a sensor-bar's eyes-view of where the remote is, which helps to set a single 'sensitivity' value from 1 to 5. Once you've set that, the remote settles into the role of an extra-special mouse, with attachments. Like a mouse, there are certain movements that are natural, certain pixel-perfect aimings that are hard to get just right at times, but in general it works to get fairly accurate relative movement and aiming working for software. It is inherently more three-dimensional than a mouse movement (in games, you will 'thrust' it forward, rotate it, etc.), but the mouse analogy is the most common metaphor in common usage.

The games, subjectively, are extremely well-crafted for launch games. They offer a quantum leap beyond the advanced tech-demo feel of the Dreamcast release set. The interactivity of the Wii-remote demands a certain ability to explore the world you are presented, and in the games I've tried so far (only Zelda in a really full exploration so far), the meat is there, unlike the rather dry and selectively-interactive environments of the Dreamcast games. As an example, one of the most expansive games on the Dreamcast was Skies of Arcadia - and while it was a good game, it had a lot of non-interactive environments, which for me, really hurt the exploration aspect of the game between plot points and isolated side-quests. Wii games in general, so far, seem to offer that kind of interactivity - but we'll have to see how many games are released, and how third party and ported games fit into the overall picture of what ends up being the Wii games landscape.

Ryan Fenton

Has anyone... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985554)

Has anyone made a Vorbcast of their trials and tribulations with their Wii's ?

Penny-Arcade plays the Wii (3, Interesting)

Paralizer (792155) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985566)

She says that while it might be more fun to play the games more aerobically, it's possible to play without leaving the couch.
http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2006/11/13 [penny-arcade.com]

Also,
"It's harder than playing basketball," says Kaitlin Franke, a 12-year-old from Louisville, Ky.
I find this absolutely ridiculous. This article is horribly worded and this quote seems completely out of context. What is harder than playing basketball? The writer seems to make it sound like the kid is talking about actually moving the wiimote around, but I suspect he is actually referring to some specific game being exceedingly difficult to complete. Maybe it gives you a little exercise, but as the spokeswoman from Nintendo says,

"It was not meant to be a Jenny Craig supplement," she says. "If people are finding themselves sore, they may need to exercise more."

I should also point out I do not yet been able to get a Wii.

Re:Penny-Arcade plays the Wii (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985684)

"It was not meant to be a Jenny Craig supplement," she says. "If people are finding themselves sore, they may need to exercise more."

Or perhaps Jenny Craig of Nintendo is trying to pass the buck. If some games are requiring players to make unnatural, rapid, or exaggerated movements then perhaps it isn't the user's fault at all when they end up hurting themselves.

Re:Penny-Arcade plays the Wii (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16986198)

"Jenny Craig of Nintendo"? Explain that one again, please.

DDR? (3, Interesting)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985578)

I just want to know how long before we get some good DDR games, with a supporte mat, for the Wii.

Re:DDR? (1)

MarcoAtWork (28889) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985864)

DDR + wii remote at the same time would be quite cool and a full body workout, although I betcha anything they'd put Y-M-C-A among the songs you have to do that way :)

Re:DDR? (1)

Neoncow (802085) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985880)

Aren't there versions of DDR for the gamecube? Would those controllers/games be compatible on the Wii?

Re:DDR? (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985912)

Well, the problem is that the good dance pads out there (cobalt flux, red octane) are made only for xbox and ps2. And I don't want to have to rebuy my pads just to play on the wii. Maybe if there's a usb-to-gamecube converter, I could do it, since there are ps2-to-USB converters out there.

Both arms? (5, Funny)

Tx (96709) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985584)

I get plenty of right-arm exercise in front of my PC, but I could do with something that works on my left arm, and preferably doesn't make you go blind ;)

Re:Both arms? (3, Funny)

gknoy (899301) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985662)

... so switch hands? :)

Re:Both arms? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16986074)

Not all of us are ambisextrous. :*-(

Re:Both arms? (1)

forgotten_my_nick (802929) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986228)

Pretend it's another woman.

This is great (4, Insightful)

c41rn (880778) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985610)

When I was a kid, the only way we could convince our parents to buy us an NES was to convince them that the Power Pad (I think that's what it was called) would encourage us to be more active. I don't know if they really believed us, but that christmas, there was a brand new NES under the tree with the Power Pad. We actually used it for a little while too, though the only game we had for it was some kind of olympic sports game. It soon gathered lots of dust though after we discovered much more fun games. Here's to the new generation of kids who get to convince their parents to get them a Wii "because it will keep them active". And here's hoping that these newer games might be fun enough to keep he kids interested and active.

In other words (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985648)

The Wii remote causes injuries and that's supposed to be a good thing how? Why do I think that if this were Sony or Microsoft, that people wouldn't be shitting on them right now and talking up lawsuits rather than trying to spin the story into sounding like it's a good thing.

Re:In other words (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985728)

If you equate "ache" with "injury" then you're just a washed-up, fat, lazy pussy.

I recently purchased a Wii... (3, Interesting)

LeddRokkenstud (945664) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985654)

And the system is amazing.

I decided to see how many calories I actually burned, so I attached a small fitness monitor to myself and played away.

After about 20 minutes of play, I was up to 97 calories. That isn't have bad, a very light work out.

If you want a real work out get Kinetic on PS2 (4, Informative)

Mongoose (8480) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985694)

It has real work out programs designed by nike motion works: cardio, tai chi, yoga, firming exercises, etc.

It's a program that also scales with use. The eyetoy is a better controller than the Wii to me as well, since you can use your whole body. Like the Wii controller you might have to adjust your lighting for perfect useage and keep an area clear for movement. I also suggest getting a mat as well. I was a judoka for a long time, and I still get a good workout from this system.

Re:If you want a real work out get Kinetic on PS2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985862)

How is this flamebait, kinetic is a game dedicated to working out. it might not be a wii game, but it does play into the whole games and exercise thing. It's very relevant to this thread.

It's really not that bad. (1)

seebs (15766) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985798)

I seem to recall having spent upwards of 8 hours on two consecutive days playing Wii games, and only a couple tired me out at all.

It actually hurts less than a traditional controller, because I can keep my hands comfortably separated.

slightly OT (2, Interesting)

joe 155 (937621) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985818)

but does anyone have any games the recomend for the Wii, I'm pre-ordered zelda today but was also interested in that red steel game... what's good?

(In case your wondering I live in the UK and we get it on the 8th of December)

Re:slightly OT (1)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985852)

I've dropped Red Steel from my list to buy on release day. Apparently it's pretty bad. Buggy, and poorly implemented. Good ideas badly carried out.

I'll be getting Zelda for sure, and maybe Wii Play and Excitetruck. Really, though, it's quite unlikely I'll be buying many games for a while. From what I hear, Twilight Princess is absolutely colossal, so I'm expecting to finish playing that some time around March. Which is when Phantom Hourglass comes out on the DS :-)

Re:slightly OT (1)

busydoingnothing (794514) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986164)

I would highly recommend CoD3. I'm natively a PC gamer and of course I'm big on FPS, so I had to see how well the genre translates to the Wii; prior to the Wii, I've always thought that FPS games on a console are unholy due to the requirement of a gamepad. It's a great game once you get used to the controls. At first you will have a hard time keeping the controller still, but once you get used to it, you won't look back. The Wiimote makes it possible to aim with speed and precision. Another treat are the special controls, such as driving a jeep (you hold both controllers up beside eachother like a steering wheel) and rowing a boat (hold the nunchuck above the Wiimote just as if you were holding a paddle). It adds more depth to the game, which is great.

Coming soon from Nintendo... (3, Funny)

writermike (57327) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985846)

Just so you know, this is the new Wiimote, coming next year.

Wiimote 2.0 [barbell.us]

wow (1)

SuperStretchy (1018064) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985942)

I find this semi-completely asinine... Getting a workout playing virtual tennis? Save yourself the cash! Why not find a buddy and go to the court in the local park?

That being said, I know there are circumstance where the virtual version might be more beneficial- such as here in New York come winter (8 months of the year), physical disabilities (this could be a good way for rehab patients to workout), etc- but seriously... thats not the majority of people who play this. And the majority probably won't play in workout mode. Oh well. Great compromise Nintendo.

Re:wow (1)

seebs (15766) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985980)

It's useful to me; the amount of the year during which I can go outside and play sports casually is fairly small. The amount of time I can arrange to play tennis solo is virtually nil.

On Weed... (-1, Offtopic)

halo8 (445515) | more than 7 years ago | (#16985960)

yes yes that is fine

But can you play it Stoned?

Sad (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16985976)

What a sad commentary on people that they would rather play virtual tennis and virtual bowls than the real games. These people should get a life.

Aches after 3 hours: duh! (3, Insightful)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986054)

In Rochester, Minn., Jeremy Scherer and his wife spent three hours playing tennis and bowling, two of the games included with the Wii. Mr. Scherer says he managed to improve his scores -- at the cost of shoulders and back that were still aching the next day.
How stupid can you be? Of course after playing tennis and bowling (mimicking the real movements) for three hours will give you hurting body parts. It's the same (worse actually) if you actually go to the tennis court and play for three hours, and nobody complains about that. Some people need to get a bit of common sense.

OK, that's it. (2)

dangitman (862676) | more than 7 years ago | (#16986158)

I think we can now officially declare humanity to be doomed when exercise means playing a video game. Could the last human please turn out the light when they leave? Oh, and remember to turn off the console and plasma TV too.
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