ecause Cory and Travis both were a little shy about stepping up to the Balance Board and try out the Wii Fit Plus demo they had on the show floor, I bit the bullet and headed there first thing this morning. They were showing nine new balance games, and I made my way through most of them, since there a line didn’t form immediately behind me. On the other side of the jump (if you truly trust in yourself) are my impressions.
I was told by the sad, tired man manning the demo station that I should try out a target game first that I initially compared to Monkey Target, one of my favorite Super Monkey Ball multiplayer modes. Your Mii is dressed like a chicken, and by leaning forward and backwards on the balance board and flapping your arms (one containing a wii remote, but with no Motion Plus attachment), you can fly over to various lit targets. Land correctly and you get points and time added to the clock. Your goal is to get across to a cruise ship, hopping from target platform to target platform, as quick as possible. It was fun, but silly. I looked foolish. The second mode that I played was a snowball fight where your character stood in what looked like one of those late-night Why-Am-I-Watching-Professional-Paintball courts. Other Mii’s were on the other side of the court, and by leaning on the balance board, your Mii leaned out to fire snowballs. This was accomplished by pointing the remote at the place on the screen where you want to throw. Hit other Mii’s, some of whom are inside of snowmen, that act like shields. It sounds stupid when I type these things.
The final two modes I played were my favorite. In the first, I held the controller and stood on the board, both of which controlled tiltable platforms (shaped like a wii remote or little balance boards seen edge on). Balls were dropped from above, and by tilting the controller you could let them go left or right onto the balance boards which you would tilt with movement of your body. The balls were to be guided to similar colored pipes for points and fireworks. As the time went on, more and more fell, and it was actually quite fun. I GOT A PERFECT SO SUCK IT
Finally, the best balance game of the lot involved an obstacle course that you progressed through, Mario style. By shifting your weight back and forth on the balance board, you moved forward, and extending your legs let your Mii jump. You had to jump over pits and swinging logs, and while it started easy, my time ran out on the third set of platforms where I had some trouble with a tricky portion of the stage. By the end of that, I was actually perspiring ever so slightly, and some of the more hefty players on balance boards around me were a little more sweaty by the end. Hey, fat nerds, how about you play the Wii Fit game more often than Just At E3?
With some of the additions they announced yesterday (the ability to craft your own fitness sets, and some new strength and yoga exercises), this just might be something of interest rather than just another Nintendo Money Machine (kuhhhchinnnggg). I’m still holding out, but I had a good time with the mini-games? If that isn’t a glowing review, I don’t know what is.