Thoughts on “Ring Fit Adventure” after finishing it once

So, I did manage to get through the entire story mode of “Ring Fit Adventure” once, and restarted with the New Game+ version, which is a bit more difficult (which causes me some issues, which I’ll comment on in a minute).  But let me write out my thoughts on the first run as I see it before moving on.

I’m not going to talk much about the story.  It’s not a ground-breaking story, but it does work to give me something to pay attention to so I don’t get bored.  In that sense, it being a very basic JRPG-style story really works in its favour, because it’s both interesting enough to keep you paying attention but not so interesting that you’ll end up working out too much and overworking yourself because you want to get to the next part.  The story parts thus combine with the rest of the elements to let me get my half-hour in a day without being bored or without pushing myself too hard.

It’s also nice that the game is divided up into a number of short areas that are either a run through a section of the world or else an activity in the Game Gym for bonuses.  This means that it’s easy to set goals at the start of each session and work through them until you’re done for the day.  Having this be natural but not really enforced works well for me and I think would allow pretty much everyone to be able to set the length of their exercise without having to set a specific time, and so avoiding watching the clock.  In general, I try to get through two world sections a session, and don’t really count the Game Gym sessions as real sessions.  The game kinda does as it tends to remind me to stop after about two sections (I’m not sure if that’s tied to the difficulty level or to what I normally did) and if I do two or three Game Gym sections along with one world section it will kick in there as well, but it’s very easy to ignore its recommendations if you want to push ahead in any session.

The biggest issue I have with it is that the main story sections, at least, aren’t all that configurable or personalizable, which means that if a section is loaded with a type of exercise that you hate or are not good at you will be unhappy.  For me, the worst were the conveyor belts that ran backwards, because they require sprinting which I was trying to avoid, and sometimes it’s not easy to tell what to do and it often got harder right at the end which was frustrating.  Still, I’m running it on a casual difficulty so it wasn’t too hard, and for the most part there were no time limits or anything so all I had to do was work through it and I’d be okay.

Until the sections where there were specific time or step requirements, which is what’s causing me grief at the moment.

On the restart, things get tougher, and I was always terrible at the “finish the thing in a certain number of steps” sections, getting through one by using the jump and hover options.  So I’ve hit a case where I need to finish it in a certain number of steps and can’t advance until I do.  For things in the Game Gym that were requirements, you could buy your way across with gold if you wanted to.  They don’t do that, however, for the world section, and I can’t see any other cheat that would let me simply mark that section as “Done”.  Which means that if you hit a blocking section and can’t complete it for whatever reason, you have to stop playing the game.  Which means you have to stop following the story.  But for me the story is the only reason I’d keep playing it and why it works for me, so I was panicked about hitting one of those sections, not being able to complete it, and having everything be ruined.  I can turn the difficulty down, and will try that at some point in the near future.  I also could restart the original story again, but I’m hesitant to do that because I believe I’d have to delete my character and all my stats to do that, and I’d like to keep the stats.  But I don’t know of any way to restart the story without deleting and recreating a character.  I’ll look into that a bit, though.

I also did try the rhythm game briefly, but it’s a bit too complicated for me and for what I want in my exercise.  It also made me go through the entire tutorial the first time even though I wasn’t even sure I wanted to play it, which made me actually strongly dislike it.  So I’ll be skipping that.

If I can get past this point or else start over, I’ll keep doing this regularly for exercise in addition to my favourite type of exercise, walking.  The mechanisms work a lot better than Wii Fit — they even work in odd light conditions — and are also more interesting.  If it had an ability to skip the mandatory sections it would be almost perfect, allowing me to customize my experience while still having a structure so I’m not forced to just pick exercises out every time I want to use it, and don’t have to watch the clock myself to decide when I’m done.

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