Ring Fit Adventure is not Wii Fit. I mean that in a few positive ways, as well as a few negative ones.
Like a lot of people, I bought Ring Fit at launch and it didn’t really stick. I do Muay Thai a few times a week, and soccer and a boot camp both once a week, and I never really found a routine that fits into the rest of the exercise that I was doing. However, now that the gyms and sports arenas are closed, Ring Fit has been my go-to for keeping trim.
The major way Ring Fit diverges from Wii Fit is that it pushes you hard. Wii Fit’s gentle exercises were always a little too gentle; Ring Fit really makes me sweat. That’s because the Pilates ring that it comes with is extremely flexible in the types of exercises it can deliver. You can put it between your thighs for a thigh press or place it behind your back for a shoulder press. It always offers a good amount of resistance. Putting the ring above your head and pressing and holding is genuinely punishing.
Holding is key. I do squats at boot camp, but Ring Fit asks you to hold those squats. The difference it makes is intense. Expect it to make you a bit wobbly.
The RPG adventure mode is excellent, with a huge amount of content to wade through. I’m on level 10, notching up around 20 hours of play, and I don’t think I’m anywhere near seeing even half of what’s on offer. You make your way through courses, by running on the spot while defeating enemies by performing sets of exercises. You can level up, and it includes all the trappings of a proper RPG. Potions, skill tress, side quests. It’s huge.
My wife hates this mode. She doesn’t care about defeating monsters and is quite frankly baffled by video games. Luckily, there’s also a ‘casual’ mode with a playlist of exercises. A recent update to this mode added a jogging section, which is perfect for getting some cardio work while at home.
The update also added a rhythm mode, which I haven’t gelled with. I think part of that is song selection. I don’t want to dance to the Breath of the Wild soundtrack.
Ring Fit isn’t perfect. I really miss the weight tracking feature from Wii Fit. It helped my dad lose over a stone because it made him track what he was doing and think about what he was eating. I know lots of apps are available and Smart Scales, but Wii Fit (and Nike Training for Kinect) convinced me that the best tracking happens on the TV, rather than on the phone.
It would be nice to pull all the data from various fitness games into one place, too. I’d love to be able to collate all the information on the calories I’ve burnt playing Fitness Boxing, Ring Fit and Just Dance’s sweat mode.
A better two-player mode would also be appreciated. At the moment, my wife does an hour of Ring Fit (which equates to about half an hour of exercise) and then I do an hour. That will be unsustainable when quarantine ends. I’d like to see a mode where we can a ring each and perform exercises together.
I guess that would require a steadier supply of rings, though. Ring Fit routinely sells out. Perhaps Nintendo could release the game digitally and allow people to use third party rings.
If you can find a copy, snap it up before it sells out again. It’s perfect for lockdown, and with the junk food chains closed, you’re pretty much guaranteed to emerge from quarantine a few pounds lighter. And not just because it costs almost £70…