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Hands On: Wii Fit U

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It's kind of hard to demo a game like Wii Fit U, because the appeal of it is seeing how it actually works for you over time. But I was still curious to try it out during Nintendo's press preview of the Wii U. The game appears to be basically the same, but with new exercises and mini-games. At this point, there's no way to tell which ones are carrying over and which new ones are being added, but one thing that will be carrying over are your records from the previous Wii Fit/Wii Fit Plus. Which is a very good thing for people like me, who have continued using the game, even if only as a way to track their weight and progress.

I tried out two of the new mini-games. The first was a luge, where you sit on the Balance Board and lean left and right to steer your way through the course. Of course, you're supposed to hold your legs and arms up off the ground, which makes it harder, and quite a nice ab workout. Since I only had one go, I kept hitting the walls, but I'm sure with another try, I could've done better!

The second mini-game was a water gun shooter where you actually use the GamePad to aim at your targets. Everyone else can watch the TV for another angle on the action. You move the GamePad around physically to aim the reticule at the various targets coming at you. The trick comes in that you lunge forward with your foot on the Balance Board to increase the pressure of the hose. And you have to step off to refill. It was a fun little shooter, but I didn't feel like it was as much of a stealth workout as the ab-tastic luge.

The Wii U GamePad is going to be a great addition to the Wii Fit game experience, if only because you can weigh in using the GamePad screen and not having to bother with the TV. Obviously, certain mini-games and exercises will require the GamePad, and others can simply be played with that screen and not requiring the TV. The other cool addition is the Fit Meter, which will track your steps and elevation throughout the day which you can then sync to the game. This will be very helpful for when I do a run, and I can just upload that directly into the game instead of having to do it manually. Since the graphics look pretty much the same (although obviously in HD now), it's these new features that will make Wii Fit U worth checking out when it hits stores during the Wii U's launch window.

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