Nintendo Wii - Fun for the Whole Family
Wii Family Fun for Everyone
Nintendo Wii is a home video game console system that is taking over family console gaming all over North America, and the world. The Wii is a family oriented game console; it is definitely rated E for "Everyone". It is praised for its interactivity and is effectively changing the concept of gaming from a sedentary activity to one in which all members of the family can actively participate, and even break a sweat. It is little wonder that in December 2009 Wii broke the record for best-selling console in a single month in the United States.
The Wii console was released by Nintendo in November 2006. The Wii is a seventh generation console. The predecessors include, first generation game console of Magnavox/Odyssey; Atari arcade games became popular in 1975. The second generation game console includes (VES) Fairchild Video Entertainment System which used cartridge based technology. The third generation game console includes (NES) Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985 with the game Super Mario Bros reviving the gaming industry. The fourth generation game console includes the (SNES or Super NES) Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1989 with competition in Sega Mega CD and Sega CD. The fifth generation game console includes Nintendo 64, Sega Genesis, PlayStation and Atari Jaguar. Nintendo released games like the Donkey Kong Country. The Sixth generation gaming console includes Sega Dreamcast, Sony PlayStation 2, Nintendo GameCube, Microsoft Xbox. Seventh generation game console features technologies such as Blu-ray, HD DVD and Bluetooth. Microsoft Xbox 360, Sony PlayStation 3 and the Wii are classified as the seventh generation games console.
The Wii primarily competes with Microsoft Xbox 360 and Sony PlayStation 3. Nintendo states that its console targets a broader demographic than its competitors. As of January 2010, the Wii leads the generation over the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in worldwide sales and in December 2009 broke the record for best-selling console in a single month in the United States.
Personally, I am not a game enthusiastic. In the nineties, I purchased the Super Nintendo System, the Gameboy and the Nintendo 64 for my then pre-teen daughter. I played a few games with her, but I found the controls difficult to use and soon lost interest. It was not until Nintendo came out with the Wii that my interest in the game console was awaken. Even with the launch of the Wii in 2006, I did not run out and purchase it. It was not until December 2009 that I purchased the console for the family and I have been not been disappointed.
The set up of the Wii is very easy and can be accomplished within five minutes. You can surf the Internet using the Wii attached to your television, getting headline news and weather reports from major news network internationally. You can customize your Wii characters, adding features such as beard, hairstyle, eye wear, body size, favourite colours etc. We have created a whole family of avatars, some looking eerily like the family members they represent. The Wii Sports and the Wii Fit activities can be played by all age group. For instance, my family range in ages from six years old to forty five years old.
On the weekends my family and I have spent many hours in friendly, sometimes heated competition against each other, using the interactive technologies of the Wii. We have played Bowling, Baseball, Tennis, Golf and Boxing. I did not know that interactive golf would be so much fun. It has become one of our favourite pass time as we take turns playing nine holes of Golf while it is snowing outside. We have also had several Wii parties where family members and friends have gathered for some friendly competition in boxing, bowling and golf. The number of accessories keeps growing as we have acquired boxing gloves, remote controls, nunchuks, tennis racket, baseball bat, golfing club and steering wheel.
My family acquired the Wii Fit as a Christmas gift and I have been hooked on that since. As a matter of fact, I've not gone back to the gym since the New Year. Even though I am losing out on my membership fees, I am not missing the crowds that the gyms are known for after the New year. I am exercising in the comfort of my family room. I started with some of my favourite aerobic exercises of such as the basic run, advance Step, hula-hoop, snow ball fight, Obstacle Course, snowboarding, ski jumping, kung fu, rhythm boxing. I then progress to Yoga, and then to Strength training activities. I gradually increase my workout times as well as change up my routines to prevent boredom. The system keeps track of my BMI and weight and helps me track my progress in weight loss. You can chose a personal trainer who will give you encouraging feedback or suggestions on how to improve an activties. I like the rating that is given after each of the individual activity. I can create somewhat my own routine which can be a combination of aerobics, yoga and strength training activities, lasting over an hour. It is fun and convenient.
While the Wii overall lives up to my expectations, I have observed a few glitches and with minor tweaking could improve the Wii Experience. Firstly, you can trick the device by shaking the remote or tapping the Wii board during some activities. For instance during the basic run activitiy, if you just shake the remote, it thinks that you are indeed running. I heard though that Nintendo is about to issue a system that includes a camera, to detect all motions. This will ensure that the proper poses are being followed during activities, such as Yoga. Another minor glitch is the mirror effect while performing some activities. For instance when performing some of the Yoga poses, it becomes somewhat confusing as the sensor is programmed to detect rightside motions in relation to the console. Facing the device you have to do the opposite side in order to get appropriate reading on the console. It took me several attempts to figure this out. Some people feel that the trainer can be more life-like, but graphics quality is not Nintendo's major selling point.
My family and I would give the Wii console about 90% which is an A for interactivity, fun and convenience. Even though there are some minor shortcomings, overall we believe that the Wii console which includes the Wii Sports, the Wii remote and nunchuk is an excellent value. Happy Wii-ing!