Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Wrapping Up Nintendo, Special Edition: Wii Fit U & Wii Sports Club

Today Nintendo did a Nintendo Direct completely and totally out of left field.  We had NO warning, NO foreknowledge this was happening, and we had NO idea of what I am about to detail.

Today's Direct starts out with a hilarious segment from the Wii Fit Trainer as she shows you how to do the infamous "directly" arm motion.  (And a "my body is ready" joke too.)

The Direct was (mostly) all about the Wii Fit U game that is coming out soon.  The main selling point of Wii Fit U is the new Fit Meter.  Think the Pokewalker gadget from Pokemon HeartGold and Pokemon SoulSilver, except that it has a Wii U logo on it and it actually tracks a whole lot more than just your steps.  It calculates exercise intensity, measures changes in altitude (which helps track calorie burn going up and down stairs), and many many many other things.

Then they discuss the Fit Meter and how it is used in great detail, tracking a typical day of an employee of Nintendo Co. Ltd. in Kyoto with actual Fit Meter data.

And then... a bombshell was dropped.  While you COULD go ahead and buy a couple of the bundles (i.e. a Fit Meter bundle, etc.), if you already have a Wii Balance Board, you can actually get the game download for free from the Nintendo eShop come November 1, get a Fit Meter for $20, sync that Fit Meter up with the Wii U GamePad, and get the Wii Fit U game for absolutely no additional charge.  I would not be whatsoever surprised if this gets Wii U sales to go in a general upward direction because Wii Fit was an absolute sales phenomenon when it launched.  Bringing Wii Fit back to try and spur sales of the Wii U is a big deal.

The next thing they talked about is Wii Street U gaining Wii Balance Board compatibility.  Which is cool... I guess.

The final thing is... Wii Sports Club.  It's Wii Sports, the phenomenon that sold more Wiis than anything else in high definition with online (!!!!!) as well as Wii U-specific features like Miiverse coming out November 7th, AND it looks fabulous.  The game also has a very very interesting pricing model: $1.99 for all the available games for 24 hours called the Day Pass and $9.99 per sport, the Club Pass.  I know I'll at least buy Golf, Baseball, and Tennis outright when I do get my Wii U.

As far as my thoughts?  Thank you Nintendo.  The idea of a Wii U becoming a necessary fitness partner for me is now a major possibility that I am definitely going to seize upon.