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Wii Entertainment Games

Wii Aches - Couch Potatoes Working it Up 336

Posted by Zonk
from the those-rabbids-won't-kill-themselves dept.
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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Wii Aches — Couch Potatoes Working It Up

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  • Its a choice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Shados (741919) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @02:51PM (#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.
  • How long (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hennell (1005107) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @02:52PM (#16985432) Homepage
    before they make a actual exercise themed game?
  • Re:A solution (Score:5, Insightful)

    by antifoidulus (807088) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @02:57PM (#16985472) Homepage Journal
    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.
  • by loconet (415875) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @03:02PM (#16985490) Homepage
    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:Its a choice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Aladrin (926209) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @03:06PM (#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.
  • This is great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by c41rn (880778) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @03:20PM (#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.
  • Re:How long (Score:3, Insightful)

    by creimer (824291) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @03:24PM (#16985634) Homepage
    Dance Dance Revolution not good enough for you? The last thing we need is a Jane Fonda exercise video game.
  • Re:A solution (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheRaven64 (641858) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @03:24PM (#16985636) Journal
    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:How long (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 25, 2006 @03:41PM (#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:Excellent! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by brkello (642429) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @03:53PM (#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:Not my choice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by digidave (259925) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @04:01PM (#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 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Shados (741919) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @04:10PM (#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.
  • by Knuckles (8964) <knuckles.dantian@org> on Saturday November 25, 2006 @04:19PM (#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.
  • by grapeape (137008) <mpope7@kc.rrTIGER.com minus cat> on Saturday November 25, 2006 @04:57PM (#16986376) Homepage
    Most of the Mario "kiddie" games you speak of are far more difficult than the majority of the "grown-up" games out there. GTA for instance is a cake walk next to Super Mario Brothers 2 or Mario Sunshine. The myth of Nintendo being a kiddie console is one perpetuated mainly by teens and preteens that think they are too old to play a game with a cartoony main character. Once you grow up you will find that its ok, mario is no threat to your manhood. Oddly enough you will also generally find that immaturity in gaming is usually on the violence for violence's sake crowd. In the end its all about fun and a challenge, Nintendo does a good job of delivering both.
  • Re:Not my choice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by krotkruton (967718) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @05:07PM (#16986482)
    The Wii is the only one of the new systems that is made for adults. Single men under thirty don't count as adults.

    You made a good point and sounded intelligent up until that comment.

    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.

    What? You don't like hanging out with friends? Have you lost your social life outside of your family? So single men under thirty aren't adults, and you'd rather play golf than hang out with friends. You sound like an unhappy married man (since you think single men don't qualify as adults) who probably didn't go to college (I say that because you seemed to allude to college students being the "adolescents" who play first person shooters) and is unhappy with his job that he started right out of high school, but that would just be my guess.

    That doesn't really matter though. You do realize that you just stereotyped "single men under thirty" while bitching about the stereotype that Nintendo is for kids. Its a lot more convincing when you practice what you preach.

    I'm a 23 year old college student, which is probably why I was so irritated with your comment, who loves the GameCube, not to mention the other systems. My roommates and I play Mario Tennis all the time when friends come over before we go out on the weekends. We play Mario Party with our girlfriends. The Mario games are our favorites on the system, and we have probably gotten more use out of the GameCube than the other systems we own.

    I'm a little confused on why you say that the Wii is the only new system for your definition of adults while your only reason for that is that adults like sports games more than FPSs. Historically, the PS and XBox have more sports games than Nintendo, unless you are counting all of the Mario sports games. I admit I haven't reviewed the latest list of games for the systems, but even if there are more sports games out for the Wii at the moment, I doubt that that will be the case in another year since, as far as I know, it hasn't been the case in the past.

    Finally, my 63 year old father loves the PS2 and plans to buy the PS3. This is because he doesn't like games that require manual dexterity, and the PS2 has the largest concentration of RPGs (which usually don't require hand-eye coordination). He doesn't like sports games and is not interested in the Wii or the thought of using its controllers. The PS3 is the system to most likely have a large number of "standard" RPGs (by that I mean games like Breath of Fire, Dragon Warrior, and FF instead of Zelda or Secret of Mana), so that is what my father wants and the PS3 is the only system for him, a married man over 30.
  • Re:Not my choice (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Marian3 (1030068) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @05:07PM (#16986488)
    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. Okay I'm with you except for this. What I do is not physically challenging in any sense of the term. But both my spouse and I are often exhausted at the end of the day. Most people work more than 8 hours a day unfortunately, and add in travel time etc. it gets rough. I'm a 34 year old physics major doing major catch up in math & sciences (because neither were heavily required for the degree in psychology *sigh*). I'm bone tired at the end of the day, and ready to sleep all weekend (as if I could) by Friday. If I had kids to boot...yikes! All that being said, exercise helps with that kind of fatigue. It's just easy to wimp out at the end of a long day. It's incredibly easy to justify with 'I just spent 6 hours in a lab, 5 more on equations, and now I have to do pre-lab reports AAAAH' I want to veg. out.' But I like gaming. I like gaming a lot more than going to a gym, going for a walk, riding my bike (and I really like riding my bike) and more than vegging out in front of the television. I suspect the Wii Workout will be the majority of my 'exercise' next semester. Which suits me just fine if I can also get a decent workout from it to boot along with gaming. :)
  • Re:Not my choice (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Paralizer (792155) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @05:09PM (#16986510) Homepage
    I partially disagree with your argument. Before I start, I'm 21 and finishing up college (not your typical party guy though).

    I think Nintendo heavily targets kids, age ranging from around 6-15. What really makes me agree with the statement is that most of the core games Nintendo releases (most especially Mario) is more-or-less an interactive cartoon. I don't mean this just visually, but the story lines are similar to those that you might encounter in a Nickelodeon cartoon (at least the classic ones, I'm not up to speed with current cartoon trends). Often characters in these games do not die, or if they do it is only implied; Mario just falls off the screen or falls on his back, you don't see blood all over the ground as you would with, say, Quake on the Xbox. A lot of the games are simple, and the story lines are not so complex that a kid wouldn't be able to follow it -- although there are of course exceptions. This really sways me to think Nintendo is the family company of the bunch, they really target kids in a safe and friendly environment.

    My dad (45) never plays video games. Once upon a time he had an Atari 2600 and quite a collection of classics (Galaga among his favorites). He wouldn't touch a SNES, N64, or GameCube, and I can understand that -- with the Atari you have a joystick and a button, but with each generation the technology took leaps ahead, and now the GameCube has what.. 8 buttons, a directional pad, and two joysticks? For an adult who might have been a casual game player, this might seem intimidating if he was trying to get back into it after 20 so years. I think this is really how you are seeing the Wii appeal to adult users. The Wii has the latest technology, but in a form that any adult can pick up and immediately begin experimenting with without a lot of hesitation or intimidation. If the developers play their cards right, I can really see people like my dad picking up a Wii and playing it from time to time. However, the key here is probably with minigames, and I see this happening already (Sports and Rayman). If games have been out of your life for 20 some odd years, you likely will not be interested in picking up a game that will take several weeks of casual play to complete (ex, Zelda), rather some game you can play for 10 or 15 minutes then put down.

    With this, I think Nintendo targets both kids and adults, maintaining a family appearance, but still appealing to adults.

    Am I wrong?
  • by cayenne8 (626475) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @05:16PM (#16986576) Homepage Journal
    "Please tell me you're joking. Seriously."

    Nope...dead serious.

    I've written about this before on here....one of the BIG reasons I see today, is that kids just aren't outside playing like we used to when was a young kid. Most everyday after school, we and the neighborhood kids I was friends with (we actually got out and met our neighbors) were always out doing something...football in the street...kill the man with the ball in someone's yard..skateboarding on our homemade ramp (semi-half pipe)....riding bicycles.

    Nowdays...it seems that schools are giving too much homework to kids (even 1st and 2nd graders) that take all evening to do...combine this with parents that just don't seem to let their kids out...hell, my folks would pretty much 'toss' my ass outside to go play. The kids today are couch potatoes...playing video games or something stationary.

    Yes, I believe parents are overly paranoid and this is a large contributing problem to childhood obesity...along with families not cooking home made meals that are healthy...and eat junk food or the like.

    I'm quite sure that there were pedophiles and other bad people out when I was a kid. I was taught to be smart enough to not get in a car with one...etc. I think rather than being a greater danger out there....that there is just more hype and broadcasting of a problem that is nothing new. We didn't have 24/7 news channels back then competing for each other...todays 'news' more often is for ratings rather than dispersal of real news. Parents have all bought into this paranoia....many others just don't take the time to care about their kids.

    So, yes...I do see paranoid parents, and ones that are pretty much negligent in overseeing the proper diet of kids as being largely the problem with the overabundance of fat kids out there.

  • by iamhassi (659463) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @05:35PM (#16986714) Journal
    "most commercial $30 dance pads right now are lacking compared to the strain DDR gameplay can put on them"

    you got to remember that all controllers will wear out if you put enough game time in. Sure the $30 pads won't last forever, but I doubt any of the geeks on here would put enough time in to wear one out. We have one of those cheap DDR pads and it's lasted great for the few hours they've bothered to play with it.

    If you really put in the hundreds of hours it'd take for the pad to wear out I'd think it's worth another $30 to buy another one.
    300 hours of fun / $30 bucks = 10 cents for a hour of fun. Not a bad price.
  • Re:Not my choice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by thatguywhoiam (524290) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @05:57PM (#16986896)
    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.

    Way to take a not-bad point and stretch it all to hell.

    We know Nintendo games go beyond sheer kiddie value for elegant gameplay reasons, but don't kid yourself, its a game with characters that have names like Princess Peach, Luigi, and Toad, and its coloured like an angry fruit salad. The fact that one can look past the PlaySkool elements to see the interesting game design beneath does not somehow elevate the entire enterprise into the realm of what most adults would call ... adult.

    A console is not made for any range group ("make no mistake" - i love that phrase. end of debate!) Get a grip. There is no 'adult game'. There are only games we sometimes don't like small kids to play. That's it.

  • Re:Hummm... (Score:0, Insightful)

    by legallyillegal (889865) <legallyillegal@g ... .com minus punct> on Saturday November 25, 2006 @06:37PM (#16987204) Homepage
    what happens when you launch one of these weights into your brand new HDTV?
  • by LKM (227954) on Sunday November 26, 2006 @04:15AM (#16990350) Homepage
    This begs the now cliche question: Why not just go outside and play the actual sport? Alas, there is not a chance in hell.

    There are lots of reasons.:

    1. My console is in my living room. No half-hour train ride to the sports areas. I'm simply more likely to turn on my console every day than to go and play the actual game every day.
    2. You don't need to find 7 other people to play against. You can play on your own or with only a few people.
    3. Less chance of injury. You don't really get tackled while playing Madden on the Wii.
    4. The wheather doesn't matter. Over here, it snows during the winter. You can't play soccer or volleyball when it snows.
    5. No planning or timing involved. Ton o'clock in the evening, dark outside, don't want to call anyone at that time and nobody would want to do sports anyway? Doesn't matter, the Wii is always up to another match of Tennis.

    Generally, I prefer real sports to console sports, but they do quite simply occupy a different niche in my life. Playing Wii Sports takes away from my console playing time, not from my sports time. I'm doing more physical activities, not replacing real sports with Wii sports.

  • Re:Not my choice (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Sage Gaspar (688563) on Sunday November 26, 2006 @04:24AM (#16990370)
    Ah, yes, the classic "games where you shoot other people" genre. I'd hate to be doing something that was formulaic a decade ago. Give me a modern, fresh game like... golf. A game where everyone aspires to consistancy.

    Seriously, if you think all of these games are the same, you don't know enough about the genre. It's like saying all golf courses are pushing the same formula. Sure, but there are variations to the theme that make them each interesting in their own right. And there's people lined up to tell you that your golf hobby marks you as a boy in a man's body, just like with video games and every other activity on earth. Starting a pissing contest about who's a man is one of my qualifications, personally.
  • by jonmcnamara (1032088) on Sunday November 26, 2006 @07:37AM (#16990846)
    Will the extra exercise gain support for video games or lose it? I wonder the affect this will have on american obesity, and sadly I also wonder the "legal" effects. I can see someone arguing that having to move the controller realistically is the next step in the evolution of murder simulators.
  • by trdrstv (986999) on Sunday November 26, 2006 @11:05PM (#16997544)
    This begs the now cliche question: Why not just go outside and play the actual sport?

    Honest anwser, because you may not be physically able to. My mother loves Tennis, but now has bad knees and can't play anymore. She really got into WiiSports Tennis, and My dad liked the golf game. My parents (who are retired and don't play video games) now want a Wii.

Machines certainly can solve problems, store information, correlate, and play games -- but not with pleasure. -- Leo Rosten

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