Product Type: THQ Wii games
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Stimulating my sweat glands since 2010....
The Biggest Loser (Wii)
Member Name: bamamo
The Biggest Loser (Wii)
Advantages: Suits wide range of fitness level, quickly allows you to get a good workout, fairly priced
Disadvantages: Motion not always picked up very well, sound glitches, calorie counting WAY LOW!
After receiving a Wii balance board for Christmas, I was interested to try out a game other than Wii Fit Plus which utilises the board. HMV gift card in hand I trotted off to pick up The Biggest Loser, a game which I had heard good things about and at the sale price of £15 I wasn't spending any of my own money on.
In case, like me, you haven't actually seen the TV show this game is based on, it follows a group of seriously overweight contestants as they compete to lose weight. This game makes you another contestant, as you strive to lose weight and win challenges.
I had been using Wii Fit for a couple of weeks but I'll admit that even though I am fairly unfit the only game that actually made me remotely break a sweat was Rhythm Boxing. I was sure in for a shock when I did my first Biggest Loser workout!
When playing the game for the first time you set up your profile and choose a trainer out of the show's two presenters, and choose a past contestant to represent yourself on screen. You then have to enter in your height and weight, the balance board is not used for this as you can actually play the game just using a remote.
Once that is dealt with, you can decide if you just want to do a workout or take part in the fitness program. If you just want to work out, you can choose from five intensity levels each of which have several different workouts to choose from ordered by which part of the body you want to work, or create a custom routine.
If you want to do the fitness programme, you are shown a calendar and choose the duration (one to three months) you wish to commit to. You also decide whether you want to lose weight, exercise for better health, etc. The calendar then shows you which days you are required to exercise, and when you log in that day it has a workout ready for you. Of course you can always come back on any other day and it will log your exercise. Each day you are given a challenge such as eating one wholegrain food or eating your next meal more slowly, which you can choose to accept or not. You will have a weekly weigh-in and challenge before "elimination" against other contestants.
One thing that makes this game a more complete package than other exercise games is that you can enter activity you have done elsewhere (going to the gym, taking a walk etc), calories consumed in the day (the programme automatically tells you how many you should be eating) and even receive tips on diet and lifestyle. There is a recipe section with snacks, breakfasts, lunches and dinners, although the only one I have tried out didn't work very well! That could very easily be my fault though!
Now onto the main attraction, the exercise. This game isn't about being flashy and fun in the graphics and music, there's a boring gym background and fairly dull soundtrack. But it's certainly serious about getting you whipped in shape if that's what you want. The workouts range from 12 to 70 minutes of varying intensity. I find that even after the warm-up I'm certainly that, warm! Although I've chosen to enter into the beginner programme at present, and I could probably dig a little deeper and step it up (I sometimes choose harder workouts on days there's nothing pre-selected for me) I always finish feeling as though I've sweated and I can feel it in my muscles the next day!
The workouts are in circuits, and inbetween each one you are prompted to catch your breath and get a sip of water. Believe me, sometimes I need more than a sip! I like the fact that you can keep track of how many circuits to go and how much longer in the circuit you have left by the icon in the corner. It also counts down for each exercise. One thing I do like is that if I am doing a move I find particularly difficult or just don't like, it never makes you do one thing for TOO long. It also seems to mix very energetic moves with on the floor toning exercises well you get a "sit down" just when you feel like you need it!
A few negatives - while the trainers aren't as annoying as many exercise videos, etc, the sound sometimes gets stuck on a loop and you might hear the same line three times in a row! And while I like that they don't do repetitive, overlong explanation on each move, and after the first circuit just get on with it, sometimes that means you don't realise you've moved on if you are on the floor doing something where you can't see the screen!
The system doesn't always pick up movements very well either. There is a rating for how well you carry out each exercise, and sometimes I will end up with one or two stars knowing full well I have done the exercises correctly! But, like any fitness game, you could easily cheat if you wanted to and you're only cheating yourself, so it's best not to take any notice of this rating system.
Just like it's best to ignore the totally erratic calorie tracker. While I can work out for 30 minutes on Wii Fit and not break a sweat for "150 calories", busting my ass on the Biggest Loser for the same amount of time will supposedly burn me about 30?! I think not...if you know you're tired and you worked hard, you know it did some good!
One last thing, the competitive aspect of the game is pretty redundant for me. As you are competing against hugely obese past contestants, if you are not in the same situation you are not going to lose such vast amounts, so don't feel bad about coming in last!
All in all, a very nice game with plenty of features. It mixes it up enough to keep you coming back, and with the calendar and pre-selected workouts it means you are able to get your exercising done very quickly, unlike Wii Fit where you have to go through loading screens and tutorials before getting to the good stuff! Not only that, but this is much more accessible for people of all fitness levels giving you plenty of room for improvement and accomplishment.
You can buy The Biggest Loser for £13.50 on Amazon at the moment, or a RRP of £20 from any good game store. I think this is a small price to pay for your own personal trainer in the comfort of your living room!
Summary: The complete package if you want to get fit in the comfort of your own home.
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