Your Shape: Fitness Evolved really pummels your muscles. I was sore in my thighs and buttocks for a few days after my initial session with the game – remember to stretch before and after a gaming session – it’s merciless.
The introduction to the game is smooth and beautiful with an astonishing interactive menu, most people, even non-gamers, quickly can navigate around. Before you can start your journey in the different game modes, you have to go through the initial setup so the game knows your gender, age and weight – the game automatically registers your height through the Kinect sensor.
From here you can choose 3 different game modes; there’s training, which includes strength and stamina exercises. The strength exercises tests and trains your muscles to the core, while the stamina exercises tests… well, your stamina and you will feel this if you aren’t in shape, I’ll tell you that.
If you prefer to train your inner balance, you can learn to master Yoga and Tai-Chi, but if you like to get pumped and feel the blood rushing and loose your breathe, there’s step, fitness and more – the store even have a bunch of extra content you can buy, if you feel you’re doing the same stuff over and over again.
There’s not many minigames, only three different for up to four players. This includes the lightrun, where you have to kick/stomp out on the colored spot on the screen to get your points and get the next spot to light up. The hula hoop minigame makes you swing your hips as never before to get as many hula hoops in motion as possible – and you will find yourself raising your arms and join them, just to try and get more hula hoops to swing. The more hula hoops you can keep swinging, the more points you get which sounds easy, but I can attest that it is quite a challenge.
The last minigame reminds me of some kind of Tetris – you stand there with a board horizontally in your hands, and blocks are dropping from the top of the screen. You have to collect those boxes with the board – the more layers you can manage, the more each box gives – and you have to drop them to one side or the other, when the floor opens up, so that you have room to collect more boxes, to get more points.
Does it work?
You might notice that it has been a while since the games launch, but I thought I would include how the exercise can impact the body and how I feel different because of it. I feel in better shape definitely, no doubt about it – and I did not even push too much, but only so much that I could feel my muscles. I did take breaks, I did forget, and I did sometimes skip a day or two, simply because I didn’t have the time or energy. All I can say is that: The game works, it does give you the exercise, but of course, you need to keep going at it to get the result!
If you are a person who carriers around that annoying extra weight, and you think this game can be a miracle, this is simply not the case – I can’t emphasise this enough. You need to consult a professional, but I am sure they will be excited about the idea of letting this be a part of your journey to lose your weight. Losing weight is all about changing the habits in your life; eat healthier food, walk or bicycle to work or on errands, and remember to do some exercise regularly, this being 30-60 minutes with this game, a walk or some kind of sports.
This game is one of the launch titles for the Kinect sensor, and there’s not much competition at the moment in terms of fitness oriented games for the Kinect – and this is what the Kinect is good at – detecting the player and telling you if you are doing the exercise right or not. Ubisoft has clearly consulted a lot of different professionals and worked together with those people to do it right. But I wish there was more variety in the game, and that you did not have to pay for extra modes to extend the playability.