Sunday, January 09, 2011

NFL Training Camp, 60-Day Workout: Day 4

In which we learn that EA does not understand UI design in the slightest.

Yes, there is no entry for yesterday; I'm not going to write every time I sit on my couch. Off days, remember. So this is the third workout of four this week (Monday is next, then two off days).

Today we virtually visit Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Not Tampa Bay. Don't be silly. Build a stadium in the middle of a body of water? It can't be done.) My suggested trainer was Barrett Ruud, but in an attempt to avoid typecasting, I chose Ronde Barber. Basically, I wanted to ask him about that issue of Cat Fancy.[1]

I got to try the QB Read and React and Punting Challenge. The idea behind Read and React is that you're shown a pass pattern and where the receivers will be, then targets pop up in green or red. Throw to the green ones, don't throw to the red ones. Not so bad. Punting consists of swinging your leg, woo. You have to do it quickly, though ... one step and kick. Not a big fan. Of course the real problem is that you don't get to decide which leg you use. I kick left-footed, so I had to move the sensor to my other leg.

There was also a QB challenge that consisted of walking, the passing part I did on day one, and jogging. (QBs don't run, I guess.) This was the game where you run in place and zing the ball to receivers between linemen, with follow-through determining distance, at least in theory; in practice, the ball did what it wanted to, sometimes literally. I found that on several occasions, I was told to raise my throwing hand when I already had it raised, and when I lowered it, the ball was thrown. Very disappointing.

Naturally, I had the problem with the game thinking I was moving on other occasions, so I had to skip those exercises ... well, I didn't skip them. I did them on my own and then "skipped".

I made it through intact, went through the cooldown exercises, and started to buy items. Fortunately, I did well enough at the Punting Challenge (mostly by kicking weakly and watching the ball roll toward the target) that I was able to purchase several items. I realized I hadn't bought the Lions helmet yet, and that there was probably an achievement for that, so I did. Two achievements there (one for buying a helmet and one for buying my team helmet) gave me more points, so I did more buying ... and I remembered how poorly EA designs interfaces.

Now, keep in mind that this is the Wii, so there's already a handicap (slower processor than the 360 and PS3). To buy items, you go to that team's shop, where it displays everything related to the team. If you want to buy something else, you have to exit to the list of teams, then click on the team you want, and then it has to load those items. Each section (shirts, socks, gloves, etc.) loads separately as
well, so you spend a lot of time waiting. Of course motion controllers aren't designed for precision in the first place, and the game isn't compatible with Wii Plus (which probably contributes to other issues as well), so you spend a lot of time trying to find the correct spot to click. sigh.

As I try the different workouts, I find that the inaccuracy of the sensors is a pretty big issue. At least I can still do the exercises ... it'd be interesting to see how this would work on the Kinect, but apparently it isn't going to be released for the 360. (Perhaps that says something about their motion detection.)

[1] Nuts. It was Warrick Dunn. Never mind. (return)

1 comment:

  1. This game sounds fun. I am glad you have found an exersis that is working for you. It is interesting to hear the various moves that the game has you do.