Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Following New Year's Resolution of Fitness

Dear Wii Fit Plus ® Developers,

As a writer and the proud owner of a Wii Fit Plus ® system, I commend you on the ingenious game you have created that helps writers all over the world get in shape. It’s fun, it’s easy, and it appeals to our inner competitors. However, in creating the mental challenges, you have sorely neglected to help exercise the language sections of our brains, leaving us unbalanced. Fortunately, I have some ideas to help achieve a more perfect balance in mental and physical fitness.

Currently, the Wii Fit Plus incorporates basic math that players must complete through physical activity. For example, in the “Training Plus” section, a player must hip-check mushrooms to add (or subtract) until a particular number is reached. Also, in the Body Test, a player must shift weight or move based on displayed numerical values for one test, and in another, be able to order numbers. These are excellent exercises, and ones most writers, like myself, need. (Many of us beg spouses or hire accountants for such activities. Matching these tasks with physical activity pairs two things we often must be forced to do, anyway.)

While the math may be more difficult for the language-minded, however, it short changes the already mathematical-minded who can do such problems in their sleep (as easily as a writer can correct a comma splice.) Additionally, it doesn’t offer the same comfort zone to writers, editors, and other word-workers. Having tasks players know and regularly do mixed in with exercises and problems we don’t promotes a true balance of the mind and body. Adding language-based challenges will surely enhance your newest Plus ® edition of Wii Fit. Not only will you appeal to existing fans of the game who want new challenges, but you will bring in even more of the weight-and-balance-challenged demographic who write, edit, or otherwise type and correct words on the computer for a living.

Therefore, here are some new games I offer for your consideration. Using the mushroom hip-check template, ask players to choose the correct punctuation to include in a displayed, unpunctuated sentence. In advanced levels, players can pick out the correct pronoun usage or translate text-speak/chatspeak to the written language. For the Body Test section, in addition to having players choose numbers on their value (while attempting balance while redistributing weight and not getting knocked over by their cats), have them choose words based on parts of speech: nouns, verbs, prepositions, and so on. Using the squat-and-squish template that the game uses for testing value (greater than/less than), have players destroy the misspelled words. Advanced levels of this game can have players destroy verbs that do not agree with nouns, or non-parallel construction in lists.

Since Wii Fit Plus ® is available globally, you will want your translators to hire proper copyeditors to help develop these games in their respective languages, but the value of enhancing the game will make up for any extra cost in development. Blogs and websites across the world offer tips and programs to this demographic constantly, so there is obvious demand. In fact, if you need a consultant for American English, A Novel Friend can open up some calendar space for this project. As a fan of the game, I would be happy to return the favor of achieving balance and fitness in mind and body. Please contact me at your earliest convenience for an estimate.

I look forward to helping make the next edition of Wii Fit Plus ® even better!


Trish Wooldridge
A Novel Friend Writing & Editing


Kelly said...

Hi Trish: Love the blue hair. Makes you look younger!

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