Posts Tagged ‘Wii Fail’

Wednesday Wii

April 2, 2014

First one of these in a long time.

Our Wii console died after 2018 days on the job. Pretty good, I guess. The failure was mechanical rather than electronic — it wouldn’t read the disk, but it worked fine off of stuff saved to the SD card. Unfortunately, you can’t save the game itself (in our case, the “game” is Wii Fit+), you can only save the data — Nintendo is deathly afraid of piracy. What to do? Well, we did what we always do when we need something in the gaming line. Off to GameStop!

There, we got a replacement console. Brought it home. Plugged it in. Works fine. Except.

This card cannot be read by this console

The card in question being the SD card whereon we’ve saved 2018 days of data, plus our lovingly crafted Mii’s. Five and a half years of work down the drain.

Yep. Nintendo did it to us again. Whatever their “upgrade” process, it left early Wii SD cards unreadable. This is the same company that puts “system updates” on all their new games to break the latest unlocking techniques. That thinks it’s OK to put a large glob of heat-retentive plastic on top of a chip to keep it from being accessed and jailbroke. That uses draconian regional locking so that you can’t play games from overseas, games that will never be offered in the US.

I’d like to say that we should boycott any company that engages in these restraint of trade practices, but they all do things like this, in some way or other. I’m not even sure it’s possible to pick a “least bad” company out of the pack — as in pack of hyenas.

Do you wonder why I’m in favor of Open Source?

Wednesday Wii — Guess My Age

March 14, 2012

Of all the measurements the Wii Fit reports on, my age has the highest variance. I can easily swing from 20 to 70 from one day to the next — and back. I pay attention to it as an ongoing measure of how well my balance and so forth are doing — not as a way of deciding if I should start dating teenagers again. In general, I can keep it below 40, which is nice, but have trouble consistently hitting the bottom stop at 20. The advent of the Wii Fit + made it a little easier to do so. Every now and then I will look in the graphs section to see how my weight and age are doing. Weight is best seen at about the one-month level, because that’s the highest level that will let you look at actual numbers. Age, on the other hand, is best looked at on the year display. That’s because the variance is so high that looking at any lower level is like looking at a mosquito flight path.

My complaint is that when you measure your age in the body test, the screen displays it for about four seconds and then moves on. It shows your weight for as long as you like, and lets you switch back and forth between pounds and BMI, but it doesn’t give you a chance to do that on age.

This inconsistency in display is a major user interface failure as far as I’m concerned. It’s not as bad as the “clear all your routines by clicking on this unmarked icon” infelicity, but it holds its own as a daily irritant.

Wednesday Wii — What Calculations?

September 14, 2011

The Wii Fit software tends to be not well designed when it comes to providing the user with information they need. We knew that. Now, I find that it’s dumb in a whole new dimension.

When you initially weigh yourself (on bootup, don’t get me started), the Wii will tell you you are making good progress (if you’ve lost), or that you need to be patient (if you’ve gained) or that you might find it hard to meet your goal (if you’ve gaind a lot – say, 86lbs). A week prior to your goal date, it will tell you if it thinks you will have trouble making the goal “at this rate”, and offer a chance to reset it.

This is all very well and good and useful, and gives you the impression the Wii is actually doing something, like dividing weight loss by days and projecting to your target date. Wrong.

The other day, MJ was one day from her goal, but obviously not going to meet it — she had over 1.5lbs to lose in 24hrs. Hopped on the Wii Fit board that morning. It told her she had lost 0.3lbs and…wait for it…was “making good progress” to her goal. Yeah. She only had to lose 1.2lbs overnight.

So, it is obvious that the Wii Fit isn’t calculating anything. OK, it might be calculating something at the one week mark, but my guess is that it has some pre-set number, say one pound, and if you’re more than that away from your goal at the one week point, it complains.

Takeaway lesson — don’t depend on the Wii to give you any useful analysis. Do your own calculations on a separate piece of paper. Don’t trust them to the computer. Of course, that’s like hooking horses to the front of your car to save on gas. It negates the whole idea of having a car, or a computer.

Wednesday Wii — Gunslinger Guy

May 18, 2011

So, wanting to do some pointing/tracking training on my left hand, which seems to be somewhat tremor-prone these days*, I went out and bought a handgun — well, OK, a gun-grip-shaped artifiact designed to hold the Wii controller — and a FPS-like game. I say FPS-like because it’s Link’s Crossbow Trainer, which is no better than an entry-level FPS. I figured I can use the gun-grip for both LCT and for things like the snowball game in Wii Fit Plus.**

Gun grip

The reason I went for a gun-grip is that the standard Wii controller isn’t really a point-and-shoot device. It’s a move-the-cursor-on-the-screen-and-shoot device. (more…)