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Electronic Arts takes on Nintendo's Wii Fit

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News Posted: Thu, Nov 13 2008 7:57 AM
The Wii Fit is all the rage these days. Selling like hotcakes, it was only a matter of time before another company tried their hand at virtual fitness. The first up to the plate is video game giant Electronic Arts. EA has unveiled its take on fitness. Unlike the "eastern" oriented Wii Fit, which focuses on balance and stretching, this "western" styled fitness game takes a more cardiovascular approach to fitness.  EA Sports President Peter Moore has geared the game towards women, especially mothers, and aims to give people a more strenuous workout by distracting them with the fun of video games, yet still get them to sweat. "It can't feel like a workout," he said, "the team has to figure out, how do I smile while I'm doing this? You play soccer for 90 minutes; if I say you're going to run five miles you're not gonna want to do that. But you run for five miles playing soccer and you've had a good time. The difference is you're distracted. We need to distract people and not make this exercise feel like work, but like they're having fun. So mini-games, things where you're actually laughing out loud, that's the stuff we're working on."
 
Many believe that while the Wii fit is a start to getting gamers off the couch, it is fundamentally flawed. Studies showed the Fit did not burn any more calories in it's workouts than spending the equivalent amount of time walking. EA hopes to improve on Nintendo's ideas. Instead of the balance board of the Wii Fit, EA has designed a peripheral that will attach to your body. This will allow more measurements to be taken. The new peripheral should be able to measure position, intensity, how strong your thrusts are, and how high you jump. This will allow EA to explore many avenues the Wii Fit cannot due to its inability to measure anything other than the pressure applied by your feet.

This virtual fitness game is the next in an expanding list of non-traditional games aimed to both broach the divide between casual and hardcore gamer, while also appealing to a broad audience. "Our core business is strong," said Moore. "The growth potential though for us is this lifestyle sports consumer."

Is just the first in a long line of fitness games? Are we in the midst of an electronic health revolution, or will this craze soon die out?
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3vi1 replied on Thu, Nov 13 2008 7:16 PM

They geared the game towards women and mothers by *removing* the yoga? Ohhhhhhkay.

Headlines from the future: EA lays off more developers.

Hint to EA: Soccermoms aren't called that because they want to play soccer.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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Dave_HH replied on Thu, Nov 13 2008 9:40 PM

I'd bet Soccer Moms would dig on some power kick-boxing, come on! I'd pay to watch. :-P

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I still think its wierd to see a game geared towards soccer moms.

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3vi1 replied on Thu, Nov 13 2008 9:55 PM

That's a great idea Dave! They should include an eye-toy-like webcam with their product and charge people to watch soccer-moms work out.

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What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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All I took away from that PR piece was that soccer moms according to EA want to start playing soccer and this chunk of text:

"measure position, intensity, how strong your thrusts are" Big Smile

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