24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Good Work Out - Menu is frustrating
, July 30, 2012
Bought this today and have only used it once, so far, if further use changes my opinion, I'll update this review.
I've used ALL of the Kinect Fitness games. The thing that most distinguishes the good ones from the bad ones for me is:
1. Variety of workouts
2. Options to choose to customize your own workouts OR have a preprogrammed workouts that address your fitness goals
3. Game interactions that help you know when you're doing (or not doing) the routines correctly and motivate you
4. The games menu system
So far for MiCoach, I'd give the following letter grades:
So overall, I'd give it a solid "B".
When you start the game, you're asked to choose a field of sport that you want to train for (soccer, football, etc.) or you can pick a general "Men's Training" or "Women's Training" and there was on other "general" category. Within Men's Training, I choose Muscle Building over "Strength".
The 40 minute routine was broken into: a warm up section, a core section(squats, etc) and then Two main sections. Each main section was 2 circuits of 3 sets of 4-6 exercises. Some required dumbbells (and in that case you had to tell the game how much weight you were using) and others required a stability ball. There were a lot of exercises in this game that I have never seen in any of the others (UFC Personal Trainer, YourShape, Biggest Loser) etc, so it was nice to have a fresh take in that respect. They started me out with some really easy stuff in terms of number of reps, etc, but it was still challenging and fun. They set up a calendar for me (which you can adjust) of 3 workouts for 3 weeks and apparently, you can add things to the calendar that you do both inside and outside of the game via a website. Haven't done that yet, but I expect it gets harder with each day you workout.
In addition to straight up exercises in the routine, there was also a game (you can play these at any time outside of the fitness plans) . In my case it was kicking a soccer ball into a net, trying to hit a target and avoid see through goalies. It was fun.
Over all, I found the game to be challenging, and fun. I was sweating like crazy. Even before I did a cardio type routine outside of my fitness plan! Aftet the cardio, I felt really worked out in a good way, but since it was on the easiest level (you can skip straight to the hardest levels if you want) it wasn't the best workout, but as I and it make adjustments based on my fitness level, I think I'll be satisfied.
I thought the tracking was okay, but not great. This game works in that, if it wants 8 reps of an excercise, it won't move on until it gets 8. So if you've done 12 but the tracking only picked up 6, you have to keep going to it records the other 2. MOST of the time, it was good, but in a couple of instances, I was worn out and it wanted me to keep going. Eventually, it "times out" and asks you if you want more time or to move on. That can be very frustrating when you did 20 pushups and it only wanted 8! There was one occasion when it counted a rep, when I'd actually just lost my balance and stumbled. So it works both in and against your favor. :)
Which leads me to the WORST part of this game -navigation. The menu system is a chore (very much like the first YourShape game but WORSE for those who had that). You cycle through the menu options by using Kinect to hit up or down buttons that are close together. When the option you want is in the middle, you swipe to the left to choose it. Almost every time, I would overshoot the up and down options and have to keep VERY, CAREFULLY, going up and then down, and then up, etc just to get to pick the item next to the default. And sometime while doing that, the Kinect cursor would dissapear. Swiping left and right worked pretty flawlessly though. What's worse than the up and down selections? Trying to bypass them with speech commands. Saying either "Me" or "My" Coach would bring up the menu, but then NONE of the options would register. 4 of us tried speaking. Slowly, quickly, over-pronouncing, etc to no avail. Thanks gosh you don't HAVE to use them, but if you thought speech would be a relief from the awful, on screen menu experience, think again.
This game was visually interesting and different from its competitos. Not only in the variety of exercises, I've not seen elsewhere (bench presses on a stability ball!) but in that the trainers were more like those from a DVD than a game in their appearance. (And thumbs up to Adidas for making your avatar look like you and doing it well. The upcoming Nike+ fitness game makes you into a pixel blur which is a huge step back.) The trainers do the movement over and over till you finish the rep, and don't stray from it, however, the dialog (more like voice over rather than the on screen character speaking) does change based on how well you're doing the movements with praise or corrective suggestions. Sometimes they switch to extreme close ups of the trainers involved body part, and sometimes their faces. It is visually interesting, but I don't know if it's useful otherwise.
Again, I'd give this game a solid B. Luckily the navigation issues, while a HUGE pain, aren't TOO big of a problem, becuase of the nature of the game. But I hope and pray, they'll patch the voice navigation issues. I look forward to it becoming more challenging and working me harded, but at this point, I'd give it a recommendation as a second fitness game if you've tried and become bored with YourShape 2012 or to play in addition to it.
==== Update a week Later ====
I love this game. After losing 50 lbs. using YourShape, I feel like I am cheating on that game by saying I like this one more. The problem with the voice controls I mentioned above cleared up after I used the Kinect audio tuning wizard a couple times, so I retract my criticism from above.
This game really gives you the chance to work out really hard if your at the fitness level. Much harder than any of the others to date. And the athletes motivational statements, though canned, just seem to be perfectly on target. When I feel like I've done something extra well, I hear "Out of my way, there's a champ coming through" when I slip up with my format I hear "You can do better next time, don't worry". Even though its all recordings, it just the right sentiment at the right time and it's been very motivational.
LOVE. THIS. GAME. And I swear my pecs are already noticably larger! Can't wait to try some of the new DLC that was released on 8/7.