June 2, 2009

Ubisoft, EA Debut New Fitness And Sports Games For Wii

Electronic Arts and Ubisoft Entertainment SA unveiled new home fitness titles and a wave of updated sequels to big hits at this year's annual E3 gaming show, Reuters reported.

Nintendo Wii's "Your Shape" by Ubisoft uses a camera to scan players' bodies and replicate them on screen, where a virtual trainer coaches them through exercise routines.

Ubisoft senior vice president of marketing Tony Key said for the first time ever, players are going to be transported into a fitness game.

Key said that the company worked with Nintendo to develop a camera to scan players' body shapes into Wii consoles for an exercise experience that can determine what shape people are in, tracks their progress and even lets them set fitness goals.

"Your Shape" lead designer Felicia Williams of Ubisoft's studio in Montreal said the players movements are tracked by the camera so that an in-game coach can give advice and feedback in real time.

"You can't cheat anymore; the camera keeps an eye on you," she said.

"Your Shape" is to be available in time for the year-end holiday shopping season.

Electronic Arts' CEO John Riccitiello reinforced EA's commitment to the Wii platform at the company's press conference, saying third party publishers could enjoy success on it when they design and build games for the console "from the ground up."

Despite its leadership position among this generation of game machines, third party publishers have had difficulty selling games on the Wii. Nintendo has produced most of the best-selling games for the Wii since its release.

EA unveiled 12 forthcoming titles, including "The Sims 3" and a number of new games for the Wii and Nintendo's DS portable game device targeted toward young girls.

The company also unveiled fresh installments of acclaimed sports franchises, such as "Fight Night Round 4" and even had former tennis champion Pete Sampras demonstrate the Wii's new "Grand Slam Tennis" game.

Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot told Reuters the Wii has long been an important console for the developer and that the company will continue to invest a lot on the Wii since it is the lead platform at the moment.

"We increased a lot of our turnover last year on that machine and we will continue to grow it," he said.


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