Ring Fit Adventure for the Nintendo Switch has seen a sudden spike in popularity these past few weeks. Who would have thought?
When it launched last October it won over Nintendo fans and fitness addicts alike, combining the gaming giant’s charm and smart design with a genuinely effective workout aid.
You can read more about Ring Fit Adventure in our (not quite a) review but in the meantime, here are seven reasons you might want to shop around for a copy of this superb Switch title.
Well, we’re in lockdown!
Our first reason for picking up Ring Fit Adventure should come as no surprise. We’re tired of banging on about Covid-19, but the current lockdown and social distancing measures means that many of us are looking for ways to stay in shape in new ways. There’s quite a few video game fitness options, but Nintendo’s latest punt at the exercise game genre is by far the best, in our opinion.
It’s easy to pick up
Ring Fit Adventure thrives in both its accessibility and approachability. You don’t need to have a demigod bod or be a seasoned marathon runner to get stuck in, and it can push you as hard as suits your current fitness levels. The game offers four difficulty options that increase the intensity (required number of reps per workout) which you can adjust to suit your individual needs. By diving into the options menu you can also toggle various assists if you have an injury or disability, letting you skip certain types of exercise.
The trusty Ring-Con
In order to play Ring Fit Adventure, you’ll have to buy a physical copy of the game with a bundled Ring-Con. As the name suggests, it’s a circular peripheral that you pushed and pulled to complete certain exercises with an adjustable resistance setting in game. On its own, it’s just a pilates ring, but slotting the right Joy-Con into the widget at the top, and along with a left Joy-Con strapped to your thigh, the Nintendo Switch can accurately sense many of your movements. It’s a surprisingly robust and durable piece of kit!
It gamifies exercise wonderfully
We’re no strangers to video games which market themselves as effective workout aids. From relics such as Sony’s EyeToy: Kinetic to Wii Fit and EA Active, game developers have continued to make exercise more appealing to their audience with… varied results. Ring Fit Adventure effortlessly comes out on top. Aside from being able to effectively instruct and monitor individual exercises, the main game is structured like an RPG with engrossing character progression and even mechanics such as loot grinding and crafting.
You don’t have to play the game as an RPG if you don’t want to. There’s mini-games that can be played separately, there’s workout routines designed to target specific muscle groups, and you can also create custom workouts. Nintendo recently added a couple of extra modes to let you just go for a jog through the game’s environments, and a music-based mode featuring 17 tracks to get moving to.
Even as someone who has frequented gyms in the past, I’ve always felt a certain anxiety when working out around other people. Part of that comes from my struggle with maintaining posture during workouts, but that’s something that Ring Fit has helped me improve. The game will highlight which muscle groups you should focus on with each exercise, offering little tips on how to better your form without nagging or overwhelming you. This advice spills beyond the game itself with pointers on stretching, nutrition, and how to become healthier in your day-to-day life.
It’s actually fun to play
Even after several days of playing Ring Fit Adventure, you’ll be surprised to find the amount of variety on offer. Although the core game is centred around a mix of combat and traversal segments, Nintendo have worked in a number of fun mini-games while padding out some of the RPG elements. Exercises are treated like attacks or powers you slot into your character’s loadout with more unlocking as you progress through the world map and level up. Ring Fit Adventure rewards you for mixing things up – not just with fun content but actual physical gains!
That Nintendo magic
There’s a vibrance and cleverness to Ring Fit Adventure that screams Nintendo through and through. That shines through the character designs in particular, with enemies that look like grumpy exercise balls and yoga mats, and the main antagonist, Dragaux, in his workout attire. If Nintendo can get away with adding the Wii Fighter Trainer to Smash’s roster, then this macho monster definitely deserves a spot!
The big takeaway from Ring Fit Adventure is that it actually works on many different levels. Not only does it guide you through a whole host of simple yet challenging workouts, it also succeeds as a fun video game and one that manages to lure in players using the same techniques we often associate with addictive RPGs. In this rare instance those hooks can actually have a positive effect – the more you commit to Nintendo’s fitness journey, the more change you’ll start to notice in your own physical health.
Ring Fit Adventure is currently priced at £69.99 via Nintendo’s official UK store. However, due to supply shortages, it has sold out quickly when back in stock. We’d advise setting up a restock notification through various retailers. If you’re absolutely dying to get your hands on Ring Fit Adventure then the trending eBay price clocks in at around £105.