Wii

North America

Gold's Gym Cardio Workout

by Pedro Hernandez - May 11, 2009, 12:29 pm PDT
Total comments: 38

9

With heavy competition from Wii Fit, can Gold’s Gym Cardio Workout be a contender?

Thanks to the extraordinary success of Wii Fit, a new market for fitness and exercise games has flourished on the Wii. Last year Ubisoft released My Fitness Coach and Majesco released Jillian Michael’s Fitness Ultimatum. EA is also releasing EA Sports Active. Now we have Gold’s Gym Cardio Workout, and thankfully it holds up pretty well against the competition.

Comparisons to Wii Fit are inevitable. The first thing you should know is that while both titles preach healthy living and fitness, they focus on different aspects of exercise. Wii Fit is all about posture, flexibility, and balance through relaxing Yoga exercises and light aerobics. On the other hand, Gold’s Gym is about making your heart pump through rigorous boxing training sessions.

Like Wii Fit, when you first start Gold’s Gym Cardio Workout you are asked to make a profile in which you input your weight, height, and on-screen avatar. Up to eight players can create profiles on one game save. Once this process is done you select your trainer and preferred control method, and start your first boxing lesson. After a control tutorial you are taken to the main menu, where you decide where you want to go next.

The first option you’ll see is Shape Boxing. This is where you’ll go through rhythm boxing lessons of various skill levels. Everything from the rules and basics of Gold’s Gym to advanced boxing lessons can be found here. Each section has up to six lessons; each lesson tells you the duration of the exercise, the difficulty rating, and approximately how many calories you will burn before you start. When you complete the tests the game rates your performance by giving you your body’s age. All of the lessons are unlocked from the start, and you can choose which one you want to participate in. There is one last difficulty setting that can be unlocked.

Next is Boxing Examination. Once you feel that you have mastered the boxing lessons you can go to this mode and participate in each test. Each test is unlocked as you successfully complete the previous one.

The fun continues with Exercise mode. This mode has various mini-games that vary a bit from the boxing lessons, but keep the fundamentals of fitness intact. Rhythm, quick punching, and dodging and weaving are covered here. In this mode you can also use the Wii Balance Board for additional exercises.

Finally there is the “My Data” option. As the name states, this is where you keep track of your records, change your character data, and even buy clothes for your character. Borrowing a page from Wii Fit’s playbook, each day is tracked by the number of punches you threw during each session, and the accomplishments you have achieved each day.

Gold’s Gym allows you to either use the Wii Remote and Nunchuck or two Wii Remotes. While both control setups work great, the game works best with two Wii Remotes. The game does a great job of detecting the timing and rhythm of your punches. The game also lets you choose a song before each lesson. Many tracks are offered, including Eye of the Tiger from the movie Rocky. You can also alter the volume of the track if you want more music or to hear the voice of the trainer more clearly.

All of this makes Gold’s Gym Cardio Workout a very robust and well-documented fitness title. The presentation of the game’s exercises rival that of Wii Fit, thanks to its trainers always shouting commands while helping you keep the rhythm. You will almost never feel lost or confused when handling even the most complicated session. Best of all, when you start a day in Gold’s Gym you have the option of choosing a light session to warm up, or selecting the A La Carte mode, which lets you select which exercises you want to perform for the day.

An important factor in any exercise program (whether it’s through fitness games like this one or real life training) is that it provides enough positive reinforcement to encourage the player to keep at it, yet allows enough flexibility to let the player exercise his or her own way. Gold’s Gym excels at both. As previously mentioned, the trainers are always barking commands as well as motivating you to follow the rhythm, and you can choose which exercise to do each day.

One advantage Gold’s Gym has over Wii Fit is that all of the exercises and lessons are easy to learn, allowing any player of any skill to participate. Not everyone can complete the yoga and strength training lessons in Wii Fit, and it can be very demanding regarding how you perform an exercise. If you can punch, dodge, and weave, then you can play any of the lessons that Gold’s Gym offers.

That said, there are a few minor flaws. Dodging and weaving takes a while to master, due to the game using the movement of the Wii Remote(s) to detect what the player is doing. The additional mini-games need to be unlocked, something that some players don't like about Wii Fit and might not appreciate in Gold’s Gym. Sadly there’s no head to head mode for 2 players. Finally, while the game offers some exercises that use the Balance Board, they are the same exercises seen in Wii Fit’s strength training, making them somewhat redundant since in when you get the Balance Board you also get Wii Fit with it.

Gold’s Gym Cardio Workout might seem like a wannabe riding off the success of Wii Fit, or worse, be considered by some as a shameless shovelware title. But if you give the game a chance you will discover that, even when it borrows ideas from Wii Fit, it does enough on its own to make it a compelling package that complements Wii Fit very well. If you’ve played Wii Fit a lot and want to discover something different, Gold’s Gym Cardio Workout is definitely worth a look.

Score

Graphics Sound Control Gameplay Lastability Final
7 7 8 9 9 9
Graphics
7

While Gold’s Gym is not supposed to be a graphical masterpiece, it has a very clean and smooth look. The user interface in the lessons is bright and easy to follow thanks to its large icons. Both the player and trainers have an anime look to them that is charming and different from the monochrome trainers in Wii Fit. The game doesn’t use Miis, but you can create a character and customize his or her wardrobe.

Sound
7

There are plenty of songs to choose from before each exercise. The songs might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but credit must be given for trying to establish variety in the music department.

Control
8

Gold’s Gym lets you choose between two Wii Remotes and the Wii Remote and Nunchuck. Both work great at detecting punches. Ducking and weaving, however, take a while to truly learn.

Gameplay
9

There’s a lot to do in Gold’s Gym outside of the main lessons. It offers a lot of challenges that record your daily performance, and rewards you with coins that you can use to buy new content for your character. It’s also quite inviting for all players thanks to its universal boxing appeal and ease of use.

Lastability
9

Like with any exercise regimen - whether on a video game or in real life - Gold’s Gym will last as long as the player is willing to invest time in it. The game, however, really tries to convince the player that this is a long-time commitment with more than enough reasons to keep trying to earn the best ratings in each exercise.

Final
9

Despite facing tough competition from Wii Fit and other games on the market, Gold’s Gym Cardio Workout has plenty of value thanks to its presentation and unique fitness regimen.

Summary

Pros
  • Accessible and easy-to-learn exercises
  • Coaching provides a lot of motivation and positive reinforcement
  • Great punching controls
  • Majority of the lessons are unlocked right from the start
  • Plenty of bonus content
Cons
  • Balance Board exercises are the same as in Wii Fit
  • Dodging and weaving takes a while to master
  • Music uses low-quality MIDI samples
  • No multiplayer mode
Review Page 2: Conclusion

Talkback

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusMay 11, 2009

Looks like Ubisoft is rolling out those fabled Nintendo quality games for the Wii.

NinGurl69 *hugglesMay 11, 2009

Do my eyes deceive me?

Are I dreaming?

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 11, 2009

Just so you guys know, Ubi only published the title. Gold's Gym is actually based on a Japanese game called Shape Boxing: Wii de Enjoy! developed by Rocket Company. The only thing Ubi did was add the Gold's Gym license to market it towards a wider audience.

Check out the Japanese commercial for it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHZvmdisnUM

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusMay 11, 2009

Quote from: pap64

Check out the Japanese commercial for it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHZvmdisnUM

Best commercial ending ever.

StratosMay 11, 2009

Wow, I'm impressed.

This might be a good one to get the family because they've gotten bored with the regular WiiFit and this might get them more motivated to use it. What's MSRP for this title?

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 11, 2009

Quote from: Stratos

Wow, I'm impressed.

This might be a good one to get the family because they've gotten bored with the regular WiiFit and this might get them more motivated to use it. What's MSRP for this title?

30 bucks. Amazon had it for 20 or 10 bucks in one of their "deals of their days" features.

30 bucks for one solid package is more than a great value.

vuduMay 11, 2009

Quote from: Flames_of_chaos

Best commercial ending ever.

Oh dear; I'm not sure if he's referring to when the girl rips her shirt off or when she takes a sip from the huge mug of beer.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 11, 2009

I just love how she treats herself to a huge mug of beer even though most fitness trainers advice against it.

StratosMay 11, 2009

Quote from: pap64

I just love how she treats herself to a huge mug of beer even though most fitness trainers advice against it.

The sequel commercial: Girl with a beer belly.

...must...resist...buying...GAH.

Actually, I think I WILL get this.

BlackNMild2k1May 12, 2009

I've already got my money set for EA Active

Mop it upMay 12, 2009

Is this really a good idea for Gold's Gym to do? If people get this, which is like the cost of one month's gym membership, they'll have no need to actually go to the gym anymore.

BlackNMild2k1May 12, 2009

This game doesn't replace anything that you would find at a golds gym other than a tae-bo or hi-energy aerobics class.
You still gotta go to the gym for your weights, swimming, indoor jogging, visual stimulation ;) & awkward locker room moments.

Mop it upMay 12, 2009

I'll pay $30 to not be subjected to all of that, thanks.

StratosMay 12, 2009

Quote from: BlackNMild2k1

...& awkward locker room moments.

I love awkward locker room moments. Would never want to go through another one again, but they are funny in retrospective once you make it through counseling. I learned my first dirty words and about the birds & the bees in those moments.

DAaaMan64May 12, 2009

Quote from: Flames_of_chaos

Quote from: pap64

Check out the Japanese commercial for it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHZvmdisnUM

Best commercial ending ever.

Shorter shorts for make better display of expercise

I'm hoping for a Wii Fit/EA Active bundle somewhere.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 12, 2009

Quote from: Mop_it_up

Is this really a good idea for Gold's Gym to do? If people get this, which is like the cost of one month's gym membership, they'll have no need to actually go to the gym anymore.

The game actually comes with a coupon for a Gold's Gym membership. And like its been said the game does not replace any of the exercises found at an actual gym or even at home.

BlackNMild2k1May 12, 2009

If they really wanted it to sell it should have come with a coupon for WiiFit, I probably would buy it just to pass the coupon onto a friend that doesn't have WiiFit yet.

Does this game even support the balance board?

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 12, 2009

Quote from: BlackNMild2k1

If they really wanted it to sell it should have come with a coupon for WiiFit, I probably would buy it just to pass the coupon onto a friend that doesn't have WiiFit yet.

Does this game even support the balance board?

Ahem...

"Finally, while the game offers some exercises that use the Balance Board, they are the same exercises seen in Wii Fits strength training, making them somewhat redundant since in when you get the Balance Board you also get Wii Fit with it."

AHEM!

http://image.com.com/gamespot/images/bigboxshots/0/958360_121280_front.jpg

:p

BlackNMild2k1May 12, 2009

Well, maybe if someone had put the boxart in the original post I would have seen it as I skipped straight down to the review scores ;)

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 12, 2009

Quote from: BlackNMild2k1

Well, maybe if someone had put the boxart in the original post I would have seen it as I skipped straight down to the review scores ;)

Don't blame me, blame the site that doesn't allow us reviewers to put images in our articles. So if you have a beef, take it up to the big wigs.

DAaaMan64May 12, 2009

Wait they don't?  Can I ask why?  Thats not cool. Do you know how often I jump from headlines to screen shots?  Every article I've ever looked at on the front page of NWR I'm like, WTF where is the media!? Then I go to IGN.

BlackNMild2k1May 12, 2009

Quote from: DAaaMan64

Wait they don't?  Can I ask why?  Thats not cool. Do you know how often I jump from headlines to screen shots?  Every article I've ever looked at on the front page of NWR I'm like, WTF where is the media!? Then I go to IGN.

exactly. thats why i don't bother with the main site but I shouldn't have to run to IGN for screen shots either.
how about the reviewers post the first post with the review and then follow it up with the first reply that has screen shots and/or video when possible.

StratosMay 12, 2009

I would like to see at least a few pictures with the article. But I also understand that bandwidth is an issue.

BlackNMild2k1May 12, 2009

is it illegal to host all your pics (while in the forum) on tinypic.com?
then its not your bandwidth, and you'd be posting as a forum member if its in the first reply.

StratosMay 12, 2009

I was more referring to having pictures in the main review. I think your idea is great.
Or we could have a link to the forum topic for said game and those usually have a lot of pictures and video in their first few posts.

BlackNMild2k1May 12, 2009

I've tried to get them to acknowledge the rest of the forums in the official site post, but that has seemed to be a lost cause.

I suggested pics/video in the first reply because he just said they don't allow them in the official review.

Or how about a link to the Preview which might have had video and/or pics included in it?

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusMay 12, 2009

I added a boxart, so you should see it in the game profile and in the review :).

Quote from: DAaaMan64

Wait they don't?  Can I ask why?  Thats not cool. Do you know how often I jump from headlines to screen shots?  Every article I've ever looked at on the front page of NWR I'm like, WTF where is the media!? Then I go to IGN.

If we get the media for a game then we usually post up the media. I or my fellow staff members do it when we get media from the publishers. And since I'm helping Neal out with the weekly releases, I also find boxarts if the site doesn't have it so don't worry we are covering media as much as we can.

Nick DiMolaNick DiMola, Staff AlumnusMay 12, 2009

NWR 2.0 will have a much bigger focus on displaying media. I know you've heard that line before, but at some point soon it will be upon us.

NinGurl69 *hugglesMay 12, 2009

Can PGC afford to?

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 13, 2009

WOOHOO MY REVIEW HIT TWO PAGES!

Now for the day I bash a highly anticipated Wii title... :D

Mop it upMay 14, 2009

Quote from: pap64

Now for the day I bash a highly anticipated Wii title... :D

If this review is any indication, you're more likely to get flak for overrating a game.

I can't imagine who told Pedro that images aren't allowed in reviews.  That's never been a site policy, to my knowledge.  In fact, we have one review from LONG AGO that was just one big image.  Our reviews don't show screens by default because the site is not formatted that way.  That will be changing soon, and it's long overdue.

Regarding this game... it sounds like the rhythm boxing mini-game in Wii Fit.  I don't get the appeal of an entire game based around that one activity.

TJ SpykeMay 15, 2009

Good, because reviews can really help a review. Not only do they let you point out something in the game (when it can be difficult to explain in words), they also let readers see what the game looks like.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterMay 15, 2009

Quote from: TJ

Good, because reviews can really help a review. Not only do they let you point out something in the game (when it can be difficult to explain in words), they also let readers see what the game looks like.

You mean a review of a review? Now that is groundbreaking. We should implement it. :D

Quote from: Mop_it_up

Quote from: pap64

Now for the day I bash a highly anticipated Wii title... :D

If this review is any indication, you're more likely to get flak for overrating a game.

I realize that I may be overly enthusiastic about the game, but when I got the game I had no expectations, other than it looked fun and charming. I was honestly surprised at how in-depth and fun the exercises were and how many activities there were in the whole package. I think that for a budget title its far more robust than other titles under the same category.

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

I can't imagine who told Pedro that images aren't allowed in reviews.  That's never been a site policy, to my knowledge.  In fact, we have one review from LONG AGO that was just one big image.  Our reviews don't show screens by default because the site is not formatted that way.  That will be changing soon, and it's long overdue.

Regarding this game... it sounds like the rhythm boxing mini-game in Wii Fit.  I don't get the appeal of an entire game based around that one activity.

I don't know, since 99.9% of NWR's reviews don't have images I assume its not site policy to include them. I also thought bandwidth was an issue with the site. And I've been told that images in reviews will be made easier in the new site.

As for this game, you are right that the game is similar to that mini-game in Wii Fit. But that's the only thing you are right about.

See, in Wii Fit you only had left and right punches with some basic foot placement exercises. Gold's Gym expands on it by adding left and right jabs, uppercuts and evasive exercises which are faster paced than the punching exercises in Wii Fit and to me makes it more fun and appealing.

vuduMay 16, 2009

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

In fact, we have one review from LONG AGO that was just one big image. 

Which review is that?

JasonMaiviaJanuary 07, 2011

Just a warning.


The TRUE sequel, Shape Boxing 2, was released only in Japan.


Ubisoft's "sequel", Gold's Gym: Dance Workout, is NOT related to this game at all, and was developed in the west by a completely different development team.


I guess Ubisoft saw fit to start their own line of games instead of porting and translating.
It's a shame, because Shape Boxing 2 is really good.

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Gold's Gym Cardio Workout Box Art

Genre Simulation
Developer

Worldwide Releases

na: Gold's Gym Cardio Workout
Release Mar 31, 2009
PublisherUbisoft
RatingEveryone
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