Sunday, October 10, 2010

Wii Vitality Sensor: WTF or WTAwesome

If you have no idea what you are looking at right now, you're not alone. This is a Wii peripheral Nintendo showed off almost a year ago; strangely though, we haven't heard anything else about it since. It is called the "Wii Vitality Sensor," although I would have named it the "Wii Finger Nom" if I had the choice.

Apparently, you simply clamp your smooth, CGI finger into the device while holding the Wiimote like you normally would in your main hand. From what I know, it basically just reads your pulse. You might be thinking that Nintendo is reaching for an even older, sicker demographic than they already have been. In my opinion, this is partially true; consider this:

Case 1: An older gentleman wants to play a crazy new game where Link and Mario team up to fight off hordes of zombie Pokemon [I already have a patent on this idea, so back off, Nintendo]; the only problem is that he fears a game as stressful as this wouldn't bode well with his heart condition. His sadistic, bratty grandchild finally convinces this aged individual to try out this [incredible] game.

The game boots up. The amazing title screen flashes on. [Grandpa is already feeling a little nauseous]. Pap Pap decides now is a good time to choose "Grandpa Mode" on the main menu. The game prompts him to mush his wrinkly finger in the device and close it. [Grandpa is a little claustrophobic]. The game takes a brief reading of his stress level, then proceeds to the game.

"Grandpa Mode" is a mode designed for Grandpas in case you didn't figure that out. This means that the game will adjust its difficulty and level of things happening on screen to keep Grandpa's stress level at a safe place. When five zombie Pikachus attack Grandpa his stress level goes way up; the next wave only consists of three zombie Pikachus and one Pichu because it realized that five was too stressful.

But enough of Grandpa Mode, it's time for Cardiac Meltdown Mode.

Case 2: Now little brat wants to play Pokemon Zombie Apocalypse (commonly called PZA in Japan). He wants to go hardcore so he chooses "Cardiac Meltdown Mode" from the main menu. This mode is meant to give you the most intense gameplay experience you have ever had. In this mode there are tons of zombie Pikachus, Charizards, Dragonites, Wartortles, etc. all charging you at once. If the game sees your heart rate decreasing past a certain point, it kicks it up another notch by providing even more stressful situations until your heart rate is up in the "Hyper Beam State."

This keeps the game exciting and never lets you get bored with what is happening.

Remember when rumble was just a neat, gimicky add-on to games that wasn't really a big deal? Remember the last time you played a game without rumble and wondered why you didn't feel the things you were doing in the game? Why can't something like this become a standard in games?

Rumble seemed like a strange, small touch that wouldn't add much to gameplay, but I personally feel like something is lacking if I don't get that force feedback. I mean, when I play Winnie the Pooh, I want to really feel that rumbly in my tumbly...who doesn't?

I would like to play an action game such as God of War where the music, my character's abilities and fighting style, strength of attacks, etc. would all change depending on how my body is reacting to what is happening. You know when you are fighting a really hard boss on a game and you do a swift dodge followed by a killer combo and you get that awesome feeling in your stomach? I think that would feel even better if that was followed by a rewarding powered-up state caused by your increased heart rate.

I would also love to see a remake of Rez (a techno-y rhythm shooting game) or something similar where the music and level design changes with your heart rate. I have tons of ideas for this thing, but I want to stop before people start getting the idea that I'm a nerd or something.

In summary: kids are brats, Grandpas shouldn't play Pokemon Zombie Apocalypse, and I LOVE Winnie the Pooh games. I just can't wait to see Sony reveal their innovative "Sony Finger Nom", or Microsoft showing off their "Fingerless Pulse Reader" where you don't even need to put your finger in to have your pulse read.

©"Wii Finger Nom" all rights reserved.
©Pokemon Zombie Apocalypse


  1. I remember a few years ago when they showed something similar but with a tetris game where the fastes your heart beats the faster the pieces star to fall... I wish the could refine this idea and incorporate it on the Wii successor...

  2. Really? For what system? That sounds really cool.


    You will like this one: attic blowing.