Produce unique, captivating, search engine friendly content encouraging customers to preorder Wii Fit.
For the release of Wii Fit, Game commissioned a microsite designed to explain this brand new fitness gaming concept. That included a fortnight-long team diary.
The title that launch the fitness game craze, back in 2008 Wii Fit was an entirely new concept. My goal with the Wii Fitness Club was to showcase the social fitness fun customers could have if they bought the product.
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Wii Fitness Club
Wii Fit is the newest way for everyone to enjoy Nintendo’s brilliant console, with a range of exercises and the intuitive Wii Balance Board letting players enjoy fun mini-games and get fit in the process. So to see if it works, we thought we’d try it out – with our GAME Wii Fitness Club!
After creating our Mii characters, we booted up Wii Fit and entered our respective heights and dates of birth, before stepping onto the Balance Board to be weighed. This works out overall Body Mass Index (BMI), telling you if you’re overweight, underweight or just right for your height. We decided to track BMI day-by-day.
Next up were Body Tests. The Wii Balance Board lets Wii Fit gauge centre of gravity (COG), and test balance with a series of leaning exercises. Wii Fit then combines the metrics of age, balance and BMI results for overall Wii Fit Age. We did this only at the beginning and end of each week. We then set our goal BMIs for the next two weeks, before being let loose on Wii Fit’s exercises.
Starting BMI: 24.10
Goal BMI: 22.99
End BMI: 24.15
Starting BMI: 20.93
Goal BMI: 20.93
End BMI: 21.00
Starting BMI: 20.60
Goal BMI: 21.19
End BMI: 22.52!
Starting BMI: 27.20
Goal BMI: 26.71
End BMI: 27.10
Ali: Ali had a head start, playing Wii Fit the whole weekend before the Wii Fitness Club. That said, her ideal BMI meant she had the tricky task of neither gaining, nor losing weight.
Mark: Current couch potato Mark was at the apex of his ‘ideal’ BMI. Preferably he’d be a stone lighter, but opted for a more realistic (but still ambitious) 8lb weight loss goal over two weeks.
Kat: Vegetarian Kat eats healthily, but often. She’s relatively active, but lacks routine. Her weekly Yoga class however makes her instantly familiar with one quarter of Wii Fit.
Tom: The youngest of the group, Tom has an ideal BMI, but is far from active, with his current good health owing much to past routine. Tom was the only player aiming to gain weight.
Ali: Despite playing Wii Fit at night, Ali actually gained weight, so decided to burn calories with the demanding Tilt balance game and Wiimote-sensitive jogging.
Mark: A big chicken dinner on Monday did Mark no favours. Weight gained, running both on his own and with Ali in the 2P running was his solution.
Kat: The Warrior Yoga position and a spot of Dancing Stage style Step Aerobics were Kat’s answer to gaining weight overnight.
Tom: Day off.
Ali: After gaining weight yesterday, Ali was miraculously back to her beginning BMI. She opted to go for the Lunge yoga, and walk her newly-unlocked tightrope balance game.
Kat: Kat also went back to her starting BMI, and chose to further burn calories with running, plus work on her COG with the tricky Tilt balance game.
Mark: Wii Fit running, plus walking for an hour (and stressing over the footy) helped Mark drop below his starting BMI. Jackknife sit-ups and the Ski Jump carried on his good work.
Tom: Day off.
Day off for everyone
Ali: Having been ill yesterday and still barely eating, Ali’s BMI dropped. Step Aerobics and the Yoga Tree Pose made this an active day back at the office.
Mark: Having exercised little last night, Mark went for the Step Aerobics, and also went back for another go on the Ski Slalom, improving his best time by a good 30 seconds.
Kat: Uber-bendy Sun Salutation was Kat’s regular yoga exercise, with the Football and Ski Jump balance games contributing to her steadily decreasing BMI.
Tom: After three days off spent eating takeout, Tom felt confident of his weight gain goal – but had actually lost weight! Hula Hooping and Ski Jump balance games, Lunge and Warrior yoga, plus Jackknife Muscle Workout, were his overzealous response.
Week One Overview
Our first week with Wii Fit didn’t exactly go to plan. Ali’s day off on Thursday meant we all missed that day’s session, while Tom missed three days of the five. As a result, none of us managed to get our BMI graphs showing anywhere near the gradual, healthy goalwards slant that we’d hoped for. Oh dear.
Having said that, Wii Fit certainly had the effect of getting us all considering our lifestyles and making at least some conscious effort to alter them. Ali played Wii Fit every night, Kat did a good five hours of gardening at the weekend, Mark went ice skating and played footy, and Tom… well, looking to gain weight, Tom ate a LOT of takeout. It was “Gruelling”, apparently. Bah.
So, week two. We began with our body tests, which showed whether our weekends had an affect on our overall BMI, as well as giving a good indication of whether we were losing, or gaining weight overall.
Ali: A goal of 20.93 meant Ali’s new BMI of 20.83 wasn’t all that worrying. Her Wii Fit Age showed improvement, lowering from last Monday’s 34 to her real age of 25. 2P Jogging, the Warrior yoga pose and Ski Slalom were today’s exercises.
Mark: A Wii Fit Age reduction from 45 to 27 belied Mark gaining in BMI, despite having exercised at the weekend. Tilt and tightrope balance games, Hula Hoop aerobics and 2P Jogging were his answers.
Kat: Having fluctuated over the week, the weekend saw Kat back to her beginning BMI, with a one-year Wii Fit Age reduction to 31. Today she opted for Hula Hoop and Rowing Squats.
Tom: At 20.64, Tom gained .04 on last week’s starting BMI. His Wii Fit
Age went up form Friday’s 18 to 24, but still improved upon last Monday’s 30. Still far from his 21.19 goal, he went for Press Up and Side Twist muscle workouts, plus Torso and Waist Twist yoga.
Ali: Tight rope, Hula Hoop and another bout of 2P Jogging were Ali’s Tuesday workout, answering an overnight BMI increase attributed to not playing Wii Fit in the evening.
Mark: Wii Fit had continually told Mark that his COG, roughly 3% to the left, could give him bad posture. This seemed to be accurate: today he came in with back pain, opting for light exercise with the Deep Breathing yoga and his new favourite Ski Slalom.
Kat: At 26.99, Kat’s Tuesday BMI was her lowest yet. Could Wii Fit be working? She hoped so; going for Skiing, Hula Hoop and the newly unlocked Advanced Hula Hoop, as well as 2P Jogging.
Tom: With an overnight BMI decrease to 20.41, Tom was unimpressed. “I’m wasting away!”, he complained. Ski Slalom, Jogging, and Tilt were perhaps not the best way to gain muscle, but Sun Salutation yoga pose provided more of a work out.
Ali: By now it became pretty clear that Ali was fluctuating in and around her ideal BMI. Today’s 20.81 led to a double dose of Hula Hooping; both the first game, and the unlockable Advanced version.
Kat: Like Ali, Kat seemed to be fluctuating on and around her initial BMI. To enhance her Wii Fit experience she decided put in a few hours of gardening in her spare time. The yoga Tree Pose, Ski Slalom and Jogging were today’s chosen games.
Mark: Still suffering back pain, Mark took his daily BMI test but opted out of exercises. At 24.44, this was his highest result yet, showing that the lack of exercise had a slight, but still tangible effect.
Tom: At 20.44 Tom was now significantly below his start BMI and further from his goal. He went exercise and food crazy, eating cake and then doing Running, Ski Jump, Tree Pose, Single Leg Twists, Tight Rope and the Half Moon – all while munching a Mars Bar!
Ali: Called a gerbil by Tom, Ali attributed putting on a pound with a BMI of 21.06 as being “A pound of pure rage” during her daily Body Test. She went for the Warrior yoga and Leg twist muscle exercises.
Mark: A night of rushing around packing clothes for a long weekend away meant Mark hadn’t eaten much, and his BMI dropped to 24.23. He went for an exercise in each area; Hula Hoop (aerobic), Warrior (yoga), Torso Twists (muscle) and his new obsession Ski Slalom.
Kat: As Kat’s BMI had gone up despite her best efforts so far she upped the ante today, going with Press Up & Side Stand muscle workout and the more difficult and demanding Super Hula Hoop.
Tom: At 20.57 Tom was heading in the right direction, but still nowhere near his goal. Yesterday’s intensive exercise obviously paid off. He did a duo of balance tasks with heading football and the Advanced Tilt table games.
Ali: Ali started well with a BMI of 20.89 and continued by destroying everyone’s best efforts at Heading before deciding to do some actual exercise with Lunges. She then tried to beat Kat’s score at Super Hula Hoop but giggled her way to a rubbish score despite the effort spent gyrating.
Mark: Day off.
Kat: Kat lost a little bit of weight but had a great Wii Fit age. She nearly fell off the board doing the Single Leg Twist but recovered with the Half Moon Pose. She tried to beat her own top score at Super Hula Hoop but only managed second place, matching Ali’s top score.
Tom: Tom somehow managed to gain some weight, although not a lot. His new BMI was 20.60. He then tried and failed to beat Mark’s time at Ski Slalom, and looked silly doing the Jacknife. He realised too late that his jeans were just too tight for the Standing Knee Pose. We’re now awaiting a lawsuit about his now-probable inability to have children.
No exercises today, just a final weigh-in to get our concluding BMIs and see what Wii Fit had done to us over the last fortnight.
Ali: Having fluctuated near her starting BMI (which was also her goal BMI), Ali finished slightly heavier, but really didn’t seem that bothered. Clearly playing Wii Fit at night regularly had helped her build some muscle in those under worked MMO-playing arms!
Mark: A weekend in Amsterdam did strange things to Mark’s body. Alcohol and junk food were offset by a nine hour clubbing marathon that saw him back near his original BMI. Being nowhere near his goal BMI showed how little external exercise he’d done over the fortnight besides Wii Fit.
Kat: Kat finished only slightly up on her original BMI, which meant she was further away from her goal than when she’d started! Like Mark, her lack of regular exercise seemed to take its toll.
Tom: Tom had the biggest BMI swing over the weekend, to well over his goal. What was his secret?The gym? Serious Saturday snacking? Steroids? Erm… no. Tom… missed the point of our Wii Fitness Club completely by turning up wearing a ton of T-shirts for his BMI test. 12lb gained, the triumphant grin on his face was immovable. Smug git.
Wii Fitness Club in Conclusion
Was our fortnight on Wii Fit a success? Well, the numbers would suggest not – with not one of us on our Goal BMI, and three of the four (unless you count Tom’s 26 T-shirts on the final weigh-in) going the wrong way.
But what you have to remember is that Wii Fit is designed to compliment regular exercise and encourage a healthier lifestyle. While everyone made an effort on given days, over two weeks it was only Ali who had really exercised regularly – and unsurprisingly, she’d put on weight, thanks in no small part to Wii Fit’s regular muscle and yoga exercises.
There’s also the fact that we missed several days each with time off work, and that weekend activities kept us away from Wii Fit for two whole days. It was an experiment, but hardly one with scientific precision.
At the finish, we were all adamant about one thing: we’d had fun with Wii Fit. Kat remained unconvinced that it would help her without a significant lifestyle change, but Mark – who had been aiming to get down the gym soon anyway – said he’d consider buying it, because it would help keep him healthy and motivated.
Ali intended to keep playing at home. Tom was convinced his newly increased clothing-enhanced BMI made him He-Man and that he’d break the board if he stepped on it again.
Wii Fit, then: great for families, friends, those looking to stay in shape and those seeking their lost fitness. But not so great for hyperactive teenagers.