While I’m waiting for their new Darbee HDMI cable to become available for review, the lovely folks at Snakebyte suggested I pick another product to review in the meantime. So I perused their website trying to find something catch my eye. With a gasp and almost a girly squeal I spotted the item I just had to have. The item in question is obviously their Wii Premium Fitness Board. As an overweight individual, the Wii Fit Board was something that I have never experienced before. However, with Snakebyte’s Premium Fitness Board’s max of 390lbs, I was well on my way to giving it a shot. After shoving some batteries in I gave the board it’s first test. I stepped on with no Wii in sight to give the scale readout a trial. Yes, you heard me right. There is a digital readout built into the board to act as a scale. No more needing the Wii Fit app just to find out how much you weight that day.
Next I synced it to the Wii and watched as my Mii plumped up in the Wii Fit Plus menu. Here was the real test. Regardless of how much weight the board can handle, the Wii software only allows for so much. Honestly I am still boggled why Nintendo hates fat people, but such is life. On the first go around, I had success being measured and playing some of the Wii Fit Plus games. I gave it my best effort to jump as far as I could on the slopes. Running out of time for the night, I left the board in the capable hands of my 50 year old mother. (I stopped counting at 50.) I returned the next day to discover two things. First off, Wii Fit Plus was no longer letting me play, stating that I was over it’s weight capacities. How it allowed me the brief glimpse into it’s world the previous night, I’ll never know. Second, the Premium Board’s feet were sinking into the luscious downstairs carpet, throwing off the readings. Of course, had I read the instructions, I would have been warned about the dangers of carpet. I added a piece of cardboard to the mix and it corrected my oversight.
So I waited a few days, to let good old mom give the board a test. It came with some surprising results. In four days she had to replace the batteries twice. Not good. My guess is that the board stays on to display the scale. This is definitely a product flaw. I have to wonder if the Play and Charge kit they have for the original board works with their own creation. It certainly would be needed or you will be messing with batteries all the time. Now, if you’re wary of this battery vampire you can certainly buy this product for many other reasons. It is quite durable, or I never would have tried to step foot on it. This means for you lighter weighted players, you can give this board your all and never worry about damaging it. The price is excellent and it works just as well as the balance board Nintendo made. Now we just need a Wii Fit game that allows for heavier people. I’ll be working on downing my weight just so I can give this a try again. Meanwhile, I hope new purchasers of this board enjoy durability of their new product.
If you’re in the market for a new wiimote, I can certainly tell you that should be getting one of the new ones with the Wii Motion built in. I can also tell you that Nyko has you covered on that end a well. Nyko sent us a nice black Wand + for review, and I have to say it looks pretty slick. (There is a reason, besides cost, that the first Ford cars were all black.)
The Wand + is virtually identical to the regular Nyko Wand, except that is has the extra motion sensors built right into it. One very good reason to get a controller like this is that instead of buying the Wii Motion Plus add-on, you will be able to snap in all the accessories you have available. I have one that makes the nun chuck wireless, but without a spot for the clips it is worthless.
Motion control itself is quite improved over the standard controllers, as one would hopefully expect. The buttons themselves are wonderfully rounded and depress very easily which is something that I was worried about. Using this is just like using a Wiimote. The Wand + is a perfect replacement for those that do not want to buy the actual Wiimotes. This is truly a case where you do get a great product by buying third party. They even throw in a protective sleeve which is practically a requirement for Wii safety these days. This is the best replicated third party product for a gaming system that I’ve seen in a while. They even have extra technologies built in. There is the trans-port technology that allows the buttons to be replicated on certain attachments. No more having a mechanical trigger that simply depresses a button on the controller. Instead, the attachments will have real buttons on them allowing better placement.
Nyko has surpassed their first party competitor Nintendo. The Big N really needs to stop and take a look at what others around them are coming up with. Who knows, they might better themselves which in turn will cause Nyko to have to improve to keep one step ahead of the game. I myself certainly enjoyed the Wand + and I can’t wait to see what new products Nyko turns out.