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Posts with tag yoga

Let's Yoga: Let's market games!

In our final look at Konami's Let's Yoga, we thought we'd spend some time discussing training games like this in general, as well as their reception in the U.S. In many parts of the world, training games are big, but not so much in the U.S. beyond Brain Age and its sequel. If we had to guess, we would say that part of that is due to marketing.

Can you walk into your local Best Buy and pick up Let's Yoga? Can you order it from Amazon? Sure. But how many people know it exists ... and of those few, how many might actually buy a copy? Let's assume that most gamers don't have the benefit of the DS Fanboy yogathon to let them know that this training game (like another we checked out) may actually be worth their while. Without that knowledge, how many gamers might show any interest in such a title? Probably not very many, even among those actually fascinated by yoga.

Gallery: Let's Yoga

Continue reading Let's Yoga: Let's market games!

Let's Yoga vs. Yoga DVD

Our yogathon is winding down, but there are a few important things yet to cover, such as ... can Let's Yoga compete with a yoga DVD? Exercise DVDs are a huge market -- could a game possibly one-up that industry? We went through a step-by-step comparison of the features of Konami's trainer and a beginner yoga DVD available at a big box retailer.

Yoga for Beginners with Patricia Walden comes with a thick booklet detailing all the included poses, as well as guidelines for creating your own workout. In order to use the DVD with them, you'll have to do a lot of fast-forwarding and rewinding; for all intents and purposes, the DVD only includes one lesson. You've already seen what Let's Yoga can do, if you've been following our yogathon, but we've got a chart comparing some of the features of the two after the break.

Gallery: Let's Yoga

Continue reading Let's Yoga vs. Yoga DVD

Let's Yoga: Tackling Krishna

The relative ease of the Naga class in Let's Yoga was apparently a cruel joke meant to make yoga seem easy. After three lessons in the next step, the Krishna class, it is clear that yoga is not easy, not at all. The Master's Lesson quickly moved from "This isn't so bad!" to "OMG whaaaat?" in the space of a few sessions. Ever looked at yoga poses and thought some looked hard? You were right.

But after completing over half of the Krishna class, it got a little easier, and I'm willing to concede that maybe the exercises weren't quite as face-rockingly hard as they seemed at first. They were, however, a huge leap forward from the Naga class.

Gallery: Let's Yoga

Continue reading Let's Yoga: Tackling Krishna

Let's Yoga: DIY workouts

Four days in and the first course is complete! The Naga class in Let's Yoga wrapped up with a simple review of the poses learned throughout, so instead of focusing on that, today we'll be exploring the extras available in Konami's training title. There are loads of options available beyond the basic lessons, including the ability to design your own workout.

After a look ahead at the beginning of the Krishna class, I must say that playing with the options looks a lot easier than what's in store, lesson-wise ... there are rough times in my future.

Gallery: Let's Yoga

Continue reading Let's Yoga: DIY workouts

Let's Yoga: Mat recommended

My second day with Let's Yoga taught me two things:
  • forget what the game says! Sure, maybe you don't need any sort of a mat, but it really does make things easier, because carpet is rough (suddenly glad I don't have hardwood), and
  • definitely remember the breathing, because it helps tremendously
Overall, day two with the DS yoga trainer was a resounding success. There are still certain poses with which I have some trouble (but hey, it's only day two), but I can already see definite progress, and that's exciting. But let's start with the basics. Lesson two of the Naga class began with an explanation of just what yoga is, and it's useful knowledge that I'll pass on here.

According to Let's Yoga, the term "yoga" itself basically means "to bind." This doens't mean it's binding you up; instead, it's about melding -- or binding, if you will -- the mind and body into one strong unit. The poses are known as Asanas, or "positions of the body." I'll typically refer to them here by their English names, because they're easier to remember and also easier to spell. There is one exception, however, though I'll get to that later.

Gallery: Let's Yoga

Continue reading Let's Yoga: Mat recommended

Let's Yoga: We did!

I've always wanted to try yoga. I've bought mats and cubes and even a DVD, and once I went so far as to sign up for a class I never attended. There's just never been time, and these days, I have even fewer moments to spare for something that seemed so esoteric. However, when Konami first announced their yoga trainer for the DS, I got excited. Maybe this time I would be able to put some effort into it; after all, DS training is fun and mostly effective, right?

Then I had a baby, and everything changed. I despaired at ever having time to do anything again. Between juggling work and the tiny boy, as well as other hobbies and family obligations (and, hey, gaming), finding ten minutes a day to sleep is a challenge, much less ten minutes to focus on any sort of workout. But with the long-overdue release of Let's Yoga in the U.S., I was determined to try.

Gallery: Let's Yoga

Continue reading Let's Yoga: We did!

Promotional Consideration: DS Style, the Freshmaker

Promotional Consideration is a weekly feature about the Nintendo DS advertisements you usually flip past, change the channel on, or just tune out.

Square Enix has rolled out no less than seven commercials for its DS Style line of "non-games," one for each of the series' seven casual software titles. They're low-budget productions shot with simple scripts, spartan sets, and a single actress in most of the scenes.

Bring your trivial dilemmas past the post break, where we've posted a medley of the 15-second spots past the post break, as well as early 90s commercials for the minty product referenced in this installment's title.

Continue reading Promotional Consideration: DS Style, the Freshmaker

Friday Video: Stretch it out

We thought this nice, relaxing yoga video (which showcases Let's Yoga) might be a great way to start off the weekend. After all, it's been a long week. You're probably tired, and maybe a little stressed. Perhaps you're planning to go out this weekend. Maybe there will be some drama, or drinking, or hey, both. Maybe you'll play games until your arm or back cramps (damn you, Metroid Prime Hunters!). Maybe you just need a break. But we have to warn you: if you do any of the moves in this video without buying Let's Yoga, you are officially a yoga pirate.

Konami's yoga trainer released last fall in Europe, and 1UP blogger onela has a great writeup here (and is the source of the video as well).

Let's Speculation

Frequent new game release news source and occasional rental service Gamefly has come through again, hinting strongly at a probable U.S. release for two previously unannounced games: Let's Yoga and Let's Pilates. We're not terribly surprised to see this news: Let's Yoga (called Doko Demo Yoga in Japan) was released in Europe in November, and Ubisoft has announced their own competing yoga game, Quick Yoga Training.

Gamefly currently says that both games will release on May 1st, just in time to provide DS owners with an outlet for Wii Fit-related fitness enthusiasm. We're interested in seeing how American gamers (or non-gamers) respond to the widening genre of training games.

Read - Let's Pilates
Read - Let's Yoga

Ubisoft quickly preparing yoga training

In Japan, Square Enix and Konami are battling (serenely) for domination of the DS yoga training game market. Konami has released their Doko Demo Yoga as Let's Yoga. But in the U.S., it's anybody's game. Literally -- any yoga game that comes out will be the best yoga game available. Ubisoft likes those odds.

A listing has appeared on for a game from Ubisoft called Quick Yoga Training, to be released on March 28th. They had better be quick about their yoga training if they want to make sure to beat Konami, who (we assume) will release Let's Yoga over here ... at some point. As for us, we don't care who we get our yoga training from, as long as it allows us to stretch our limbs several times their normal size, breathe fire, and teleport.

[Via Siliconera]

The yoga-game arms race heats up

As part of the second series of DS Style cards, Square Enix released a yoga trainer called DS de Hajimeru: Tipness no Yoga (Begin with the DS: Tipness's Yoga) in collaboration with Tipness, a fitness club chain. Naturally, it looks a lot like Konami's Let's Yoga, but it would pretty much have to. We think we prefer Square's aesthetic, which uses some cut-paper-style mascots and full-motion video yoga demonstrations.

And we say that without being invited to the yoga class Square Enix held in Shibuya for the press. We look forward to seeing how the Great Yoga Game Wars of '07 play out.

TGS07: Konami moves beyond yoga

We've been interested in Konami's yoga trainer, but is the handheld ready to move beyond the mat? Apparently someone thinks so, because the company is planning several new similar titles. One is another yoga trainer, but there's also a Pilates trainer and a title focused around skin care. Doko Demo Yoga, Doko Demo Pilates, and Beauty Navigation: Dream Skincare are currently in the planning stages, but at the pre-TGS press conference, Konami reps also spoke about their plans to remake DS owners from the ground up with their Entertainment, Exercise, and Self-Management series.

While the combination of skin care and the DS seems like a stretch for us (without protection, anyway), bringing Pilates to the handheld may be even more lucrative for the company than yoga. Pilates training can be notoriously expensive, and depending on the depth of the software, this could really offer a lot of options for people looking to add the method to their exercise regimen without emptying their wallets.

Let's Yoga shifts into place for Europe

Looks like non-Japanese yoga fans will get a taste of the discipline sooner than we expected. Konami's Let's Yoga has been announced for a European release sometime this November, though a specific date has not yet been attached to the title.

A North American release has yet to be confirmed, though we expect to hear about it directly. If not ... who's with us for importing? A handheld yoga trainer just seems too good to pass up. After all, it's just as portable as a rolled-up mat.

Gallery: Let's Yoga

Let's look at Let's Yoga

The graphics for Konami's Let's Yoga aren't anything special, and we don't care. They don't have to be; so long as the menus are readable and the poses discernible, this "game" has everything we need -- and more. Where's the more come in? From the screenshots up at IGN, the title looks very detailed. Now that we can read the menus and understand what's going on (a luxury we didn't enjoy with the Japanese version), Let's Yoga is pretty impressive.

So far, there's no firm date for Let's Yoga in the U.S., but IGN has a 2008 release predicted. The title hit last month in Japan, so we hope to have a chance to get bendy by February. Those breathing exercises should be a great way to combat the chill, but if you're on uncarpeted floors, we definitely recommend a mat.

Friday Video: Konami Say Relax

We were unable to embed this week's video for you, but we just ... can't seem to get too upset about it. It must be all the inner peace we're feeling. We suggest you head over to Konami's Dokodemo Yoga page and watch the introductory video for yourself. It's hard to miss-- just click "play movie."

Let the soothing music wash over you. It's no problem if you don't know Japanese. The narration will just be relaxing white noise for you. Just let the week's stresses dissipate. Maybe have some tea. Not being yoga practitioners ourselves, we have no idea if it's actually calming, but the video sure is.

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