Active Life Outdoor Challenge
One exergame that often gets left out of lists of exergames is Active Life Outdoor Challenge for Wii. Usually I wait for reviews before buying a game, but last year I preordered this one without hesitation, and it turned out to be as fun and intense as I had hoped it would be.
Like DDR, ALOC (exclusive to Wii) comes with a mat that plugs into the console, but unlike the standard DDR four-arrow mat, this mat has a unique 8-button design that is only compatible with other Active Life games (a second game in the series, Active Life Extreme Challenge, is coming this summer). Using your Mii, you play a series of fitness-focused minigames that can be as simple as just sprinting to a finish line and trying to beat your best time. Other fun minigames include kayaking (you just hold the remote sideways and “paddle”), mountain boarding, speed skating (you have to run on the mat to speed up) and whack-a-mole.
Because the games are so simple, this is great to play with kids, and I really work up a sweat, up on the level of DDR on heavy. The Exercise mode has several courses of minigames that let you go as fast or slow as you want, so any level can play, from beginners to athletes.
Articles about exergaming usually include Wii Fit, EA Sports Active and DDR, but this game has fallen under the radar for some reason. Still, it has generated a ton of positive buzz at Amazon (including a 5-star review from me, under my Amazon handle of “plyopowerd”). When it comes to casual and fitness games, I find that Amazon reviews are often more reliable than reviews at gaming sites.
Of course nothing can beat the real outdoors, but when the temperature hits the triple digits or zero, Active Life Outdoor Challenge is a fun way for the family to play and sweat together.