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Friday, January 24, 2020

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 11: Three Sucky Friends at the Valley of Wishes

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I have trouble with friends and I wish it was different, so this world is personal!

What is a fitness log and why am I doing it? This article should answer your questions. And the end of last week's Fitness Log, Week 10, should tell you where we are at in our current Ring Fit Adventure quest: World 11: Valley of Wishes.

The first thing I do on Sunday night is try my first Multitask Mode donation. Then, I increased my difficulty level by 1 to 29. Then... there's a Fitness Gym guarding a Treasure Chest in the Adventure overworld. It's the Waist Set gym, involving...

  1. Russian Twist (x58) — I'm not really sure what you need to do to get 100 points every time. Sometimes I get those. Sometimes I get somewhere else in the 90s. I figure it has something to do with what angle the Ring-Con has to be in?
  2. Pendulum Bend (x26) — You should get 100 points every time for this. The game is grading you on the Ring-Con being held perpendicular to the floor, which you'll be able to do regardless of if your form is actually correct or not.
  3. Overhead Hip Shake (x58) — The most fun activity in this game. Easy 100 points for every one of them. Just shake your hips left and right!
  4. Standing Twist (x58) — Same point story with the Russian Twist.
  5. Tree Pose (x24) — All of the above are Abs Fit Skills, except for this one, which is Yoga. You should get 100 points on every repetition. The game is incredibly sympathetic to you for the Tree Pose, suggesting you can hold your leg much lower than they suggest and still be fine. You're graded only on the easy arm movements, after all.
I got an average score of 96 points, or an A-rank. Good enough to earn 500 coins from the Fitness Gym. That Treasure Chest, by the way, has the Chair Pose Lv.2 Yoga Fit Skill (single-range, recharge turns of 2, for 260 base attack). I levelled up to level 91 in the process, and unlocked the Standing Twist Lv.2 Fit Skill from the skill tree (205 base attack, 3 recharge, and all-range). Perhaps I'll learn how to use it properly in the next level...

...Which is Cowardly Strongman's House. Scarecruel orders me to barge inside of it and retrieve him. I hope she doesn't want him more than me! ...But it turns out that his house is really home to a miniboss battle (with miniboss music) of a Blue Gobhoplin+, a Red Gobhoplin+, the Matta Slay, a Yellow Gobhoplin+, and a Green Gobhoplin+. Clearly, that Matta Slay is the miniboss and the Gobhoplin+s are just there as the muscle. They're pretty weak—collectively, the four of them did one-fourth of one heart of damage, and the Standing Twist Lv.2 took them down to half health (except for the Yellow Gobhoplin+, which almost got one-rounded). The Matta Slay can heal all of the enemies at once, though! But on the second turn, I used my Bow Pull Lv.2 to defeat all four weakened Gobhoplin+s, leaving me to just the Matta Slay, which is also a weak attacker.

Ring Fit Adventure Matta Slay miniboss Cowardly Strongman's House Ab Guard
This is what a Matta Slay looks like against my Ab Guard.

After a few turns of fruitlessly fighting solo, Matta Slay will summon the four Gobhoplin+s again. At this point, it's better to just knock out the miniboss, which I do with one more turn, knocking both it and the Gobhoplin+s out with it. (But I get full experience-point credit for the latter.) The Cowardly Strongman thanks us for getting the monsters out of his house, and we get our second friend—though Ring says we need an expanded definition of the word “friend.” (He may be afraid of fighting, but Scarecruel really wants to know how much Cowardly Strongman can bench...) 

Ring Fit Adventure expand definition of friend Valley of Wishes
Ring doesn't have any friends under a wider definition of the term anyway, so what's he sad about?

We can now progress to the second half (in terms of horizontal scrolling) of World 11, but some requests opened up. One of them is to do that Fitness Gym all over again, but clear it with an average score of 90 or above. It doesn't matter that I did that the first time... I gotta do it again. Well, I'll do that now so I don't have to save it for later. All of those muscles are already worked up and raring to go, after all. And the prize? 3 Basil Mint Smoothies! This time, I got an average score of 98 points, high enough for an S-rank. It's an improvement from the first time, too, getting me to level 92, which gives me the power of the Warrior I Pose Lv.2, the strongest Fit Skill yet (300 base power!).

Meanwhile, a woman, reminiscent of her jumping husband, wants me to clear Sunset Road within 360 steps. (Run and jump instead of just run.) After doing so, she explains her husband is still around... but he's just very lazy now, and the only thing he jumps for is dessert. Huh. Well, alright. She gave me 500 coins from that. And then there is another guy who is obsessed with physical form of the Yellow Naughtylus enemy and wants me to kill three of them... and bring him the bodies I guess. I'm not really sure. But that's an ongoing request I'll have to do for the rest of this world, probably. Which I'll continue tomorrow (Monday)!

The first task for me on Monday is the Battle Gym. Maybe there will be Yellow Naughtylus there. I'd like to see three of them as soon as possible so I can go back to skipping fights... and taking other Requests, since you can only have one active Request at a time. Unfortunately, the four-round Battle Gym did not have a Yellow Naughtylus, but I did S-rank it in 7 turns.

The next level, Soak Road, has a Toned Man as a toll guard, asking for 100,000,000 coins as a toll to cross, per person. Scarecruel ordered Cowardly Strongman to pay Toned Man, but he lacks the funds. Scarecruel then ordered Cowardly Strongman to knock him out so we can get through, but Cowardly Strongman is too much of a coward. Hey, Scarecruel! Boss ME around, please! Instead, Toned Man suggests if we clear the level within 300 steps, he'll waive the toll. And so I did it in just under 200 steps. Toned Man joined our party (just so you understand, everyone is only around for dialogue—battles are still just me and Ring)! Also for your information, ever since we got the ability to double jump, you can't do a single jump into a hover. You have to jump, jump again, then hover.

Ring Fit Adventure Valley of Wishes three friends summary story
Well, let's enter the Valley of Wishes! ...Soon enough.

Somehow, we already unlocked another Battle Gym, offering a new reward: The Watermelon Smoothie! And in round 1, we already encounter a brand-new enemy type: The Green Protean Shaker. It's... actually the third evolution of the Naughtylus/Mallusk line. It's a Naughtylus with a giant protein shake water-cooler on its head? But it couldn't take a Chair Pose Lv.2 and a Pendulum Bend Lv.2! ...As for the other 3 rounds, no Yellow Naughtylus and nothing else to note, just that I again S-ranked it in 7 turns. A Watermelon Smoothie revives you after you get knocked out... with five hearts upon revival!

The Battle Gym was guarding a Treasure Chest with Cocoa and Hojicha Latte recipes. Sounds like some hip coffee stuff. They both increase your Defence in battle. Also, Cocoa is the first brown-coloured drink in this game. That Treasure Chest was guarding the Game Gym for Bank Balance (Advanced), which we haven't encountered yet in Advanced form. I got 7600 points, enough for an A-rank. I think the maximum amount of points is 8000 or 8200; I forget how many tokens I missed. (Either 4 or 6; but the tokens are collected on both sides of the balance beam so it's 2 or 3 opportunities missed.) The thing here is that the silver tokens actually move in a wave instead of stay stationary, which makes approaching them a bit more complicated.

Ring Fit Adventure Red Protean Shaker status effect Hasty Highway
This is how the boxart to Splatoon 2 was made.
(The Blue Gobhoplin doesn't seem pleased.)

I have two choices for my next level, and I'm going with the optional one in hope there are Yellow Naughtylus here, despite the recommendation for Red Fit Skills: To Hasty Highway! (Which is a nighttime palette swap of Starting-Block Bridge.) And sure enough, the first enemy group consists of a Red Protean Shaker, a Blue Gobhoplin, and a Yellow Naughtylus. I also got my first ever status effect: the Red Protean Shaker “spit something up” and decreased the power of my Yoga Fit Skills, but increased the power of my Arm Fit Skills. ...And I didn't use them. Not then. But in the second enemy batch, there were three Red Gobhoplins and one Blue Protean Shaker. (Not what I'm looking for...!) When the Blue Protean Shaker spat something up, it decreased Yellow Fit Skills and increased the power for Blue Fit Skills. I can therefore deduce that Red and Green are opposed to one another, and Blue and Yellow are opposed, and everything else is neutral to one another. You know, in the elemental pantheon. ...Which doesn't make much sense because shouldn't Arms and Legs be opposites? After clearing that, I get access to Gold Hoplins... of which there are three! One ran off, though. They collectively guarded the Crate Crasher (Advanced) Game Gym. The only different between Crate Crasher (Advanced) and Crate Crasher (Novice) is that the more difficult version has 24 crates on screen at a time (4 rows and 6 columns) while the easier version has 15 crates at a time (3 rows and 5 columns). That's... kind of disappointing. I A-ranked it. That's enough for today.

It's Tuesday, and we are going to River Road. An old woman appears, and she's attempting to tell us that monsters stole her dentures. Scarecruel wishes to ignore her. Toned Man makes fun of her failing way of communication. Cowardly Strongman is scared to go near monsters. Ring is disappointed with everyone involved., though I think the order presented is the ranking from best reaction to worst. Ring is disappointed that none of our friends are with us when we start the level, which has a solid minute and a half of river rowing into an enemy fight of... a Yellow Megaphauna, a Yellow Naughtylus (YES!), and a Yellow Mallusk. But no Yellow Naughtylus for the rest of the course. Mostly more rowing. But in the rain. Looks beautiful and reminiscent of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. And the dentures magically appeared after clearing the level and the last enemy squad, like a The Legend of Zelda game. The old woman, called Troubled Villager, says the Valley of Wishes is ahead, and so we press on. ...Though River Road took nearly 14 minutes of in-game exercise time to clear, which is absurdly long.

Ring Fit Adventure River Road Valley of Wishes scenery rain night Abdominal Press Twist
You can't actually explore the structures on the sides, but...

Since roads are a theme here, despite there being no government (only governments can make roads, you know!), the next level and the last one before Dragaux Stadium is Twilight Road. After going through some conveyors, the first batch of enemies is... a Naughtylus, a Gobhoplin, and a Yellow Naughtylus! w00t! We can be done with this request now! ...And the five-enemy batch after that? Also has a Yellow Naughtylus. I'm inadvertently overachieving. It also had a Red Protean Shaker, and this one spat up a Legs-debuffer and an Arms-buffer, so I guess that means... it's random what the debuffed Fit Skill is.

That creepy Yellow Naughtylus aficionado was pleased I presented him Yellow Naughtylus bodies for inspection. Apparently he wanted to see if the...legs...were...shaped like..their head? Yikes. (They're not.) New requests also opened up, including Hubby asking for a Mixed Chard for research purposes, and a Crate Crasher (Advanced) challenge to “Break 70 or more crates using just air blasts!” I guess that means to avoid breaking the area-of-effect explosion from breaking the balloons? Actually, you can blow those up (and you have to, if only to do it last to make the next set of crates descend) but it's really easy to get 70 broken. With that done, that leaves just Dragaux Stadium left. There's five more requests, but those will only be unlocked after we do Dragaux Stadium. I'll leave that for tomorrow!

In the cooldown period, Ring Fit Adventure alleged that tomatoes and corn are vegetables, which I'm happy to agree with. (Though it then said they're sugary and to eat them only moderately.) 

Ring Fit Adventure tip eat as many vegetables in moderation potatoes corn tomatoes
So do corn chips with salsa count as a serving of vegetables? I like that...

Wednesday: It's not called Dragaux Stadium. It's called the Valley of Wishes, and our three friends went on ahead of us without saying anything.

Ring Fit Adventure our friends suck Valley of Wishes World 11
Hey, I like Scarecruel!
...But Ring's right, I don't tend to make very good friendships with others.

The estimated time it'll take to get through this course is a whopping 26 minutes... so that's easily going to be the longest course yet. And it's the most physically grueling, with Pinwheel Door after Pinwheel Door (think twenty in short succession) that, for each one, you need to press the Ring-Con in to shoot an air blast... many times (I counted 35). And if you take a three-second break while the Pinwheel Door isn't fully open, it will close back down. By the very end of this course, it told me I did 717 Ring Presses.

Throughout this whole level, there wasn't any Dragaux architecture. Yet at the very end... Abdonis, Armando, and Allegra were standing around. ...And if you came close, a cutscene appeared which revealed that, in fact, they were the three friends of the Toned Man, the Cowardly Strongman, and Scarecruel. ...Which makes it twice that Abdonis fooled us with disguises, and now I have a whole new level of adoration for Allegra. ...I bet the old woman who lost her dentures was Guru Andma, eh? Dragaux is apparently taking a nap right now to rest his muscles, and after all of those Pinwheel Doors, I want a nap too.

Ring Fit Adventure Valley of Wishes world 11 boss fight Allegra Armando Abdonis
Why don't you just lure me into a pit trap or something? One deep enough that I can't double-jump out of.
...Also, I didn't know it was “the Scarecruel.”

Well, now I'm in the scary position of having to fight those three of the Four Masters all at the same time. Since my arms are exhausted, I'll go for Allegra first with Leg-based Fit Skills. (And drink some Cocoa for defence.) On her attack, she gave me an “eager look”, which decreased the strength of my Arms Fit Skills. ...Well, I wasn't gonna go for those anyway right now. For Armando, he gives a “suspicious look” lowering the strength of my Yoga Fit Skills. For Abdonis, he provides a “flashy look” to lower the strength of my Leg Fit Skills. By the way, these guys individually have more durability than they did back when they were individual boss fights. And when they get down to below half health, they each have a special move to fire off that I have to defend against in a special way. For Allegra, it's still the Wide Squat... which I'll have you know, I did legitimately! For Armando, I need to have a Back Press defence. For Abdonis, it's a Leg Raise where you just keep your legs in the air while your back is on the floor, which is... really easy and even relaxing to do!

Those debuffs, by the way, last several turns.

Still, I was never in any risk of actually getting a game over and never even got to below half my health. Part of that is me being over-leveled, I'm sure. But I beat the three of them...while breaking a sweat. Not because the fight is mechanically difficult, but it is physically exhausting. So much so, I'm done for the day.

It's Thursday! I'm only playing today to earn the “Adventure Regular” achievement (play Adventure mode five days consecutively)... but it turns out now there's also an achievement for playing Adventure Mode seven days consecutively. Oy vey. I already got a bloody nose today just being stressed out in anticipation for my dentist appointment. Let's clear some requests...

World 11's first Battle Gym is offering a Defense Drink item if I can clear it within 10 turns. I know I can, so I will, and I did. I drank it right away, too. I'm level 100 and have 379 attack and 380 defence. But those stats don't help me with the next request. For 500 coins... “Clear [Dreadmill (Advanced)] with 6500 points or more without standing still!” In other words, move. Constantly. ...I'm not really sure what qualifies as standing still. Does that mean not moving at all at the starting position (which isn't on the treadmill)? I got 7100 points and passed on my first try, also beating my previous score in this minigame. That's good. After that, the second Battle Gym in World 11 wants me to clear that in 10 turns as well, but they're offering 5 Super Cress Smoothies. I'll note here that the Protean Shaker's Fit Skill buffing/debuffing transfers between Battle Gym rounds. Anyway, the next request is to collect all of the tokens in Bank Balance (Advanced), which means I can be fine collecting bombs too. I eventually succeeded after a few tries, including a heart-breaking one where I paused at the last stretch, leaving me a few frames from getting the two gold tokens to finish the course. ...But the try right after I succeeded, and got 500 coins.

There is one request remaining in World 11, but I think it deserves its own day. ...At least, I deserve to stretch this out to Friday, 'cause I'm tired.

The last request is from a self-proclaimed Gym Fanatic saying there is an underground Battle Gym event. He gives the mission of, “You can only hit one monster per turn!” I... didn't expect that to be the request. It means that I shouldn't equip any Fit Skills that can hit a three-range or a five-range, and it also means that battles will take substantially more turns than they would otherwise. I'm still at no threat of losing the fight... it's just more of an endurance test. But I did it in 13 turns (with 12 enemies across 4 rounds) and still got an S-rank, which tells me that Battle Gym ranks are based on Great! ratio and not turns taken. And with that, World 11 is 100% completed!

Ring Fit Adventure Battle Gym Fanatic
I actually have to find HIM. There's no notification that he's in the previous worlds.
Just a darkened portrait of his face suddenly appears in the requests section of the world in the Select Worlds menu, as opposed to a question mark.

...But now this Gym Fanatic is in some of the previous worlds that have open requests, such as World 10: Grandminion Gauntlet. In that world, Gym Fanatic wants me to complete its Battle Gym (which has weaker enemies than before, since it's earlier in the game) using only Yoga Fit Skills. I buy Warrior II Pose Lv.2 (which is a mouthful, but it's also an all-range attack with 210 base power and a lot less physically grueling than, say, the Bow Pull Lv.2) from the skill tree and I'm off... I gotta say, it feels really good to be able to wipe out the whole squad of five enemies with one attack, even if Yoga isn't super-effective against the vast majority of the enemies here! And so I got another 500 coins after finishing this in 7 turns with a 100% Great! ratio. And that got me to 100% completion for World 10!

The last place Gym Fanatic has shown up is World 6: The Shrouded Land, which we last had to leave incomplete at the start of week 7's log. But after we're done with this guy, it'll be done. So what does he want? To beat its Battle Gym with only Leg Fit Skills, which is frightening because that will mean I have to use Squats. Even if the enemies here are much weaker and it's only three rounds of fighting... But at the end I had to Overhead Squat Lv.2. For any humans out there, here's my suggestion: Take your pants off, and then try to squat. It's easier to squat without pants. Anyway, I managed to do it, and got 300 coins and 100% completion for World 6! That leaves Worlds 3, 7, and 9 that aren't 100% completed.

Oh, and World 12, but we'll see about that next week.

Ring Fit Adventure exercise log world week 11
World 11 took a significant amount of time to 100% clear. More than the other worlds in terms of time and days.
At this point I'm not even able to play other games since I gotta write an article, too!

This is kind of one of the few times I'm envious of humans... you don't have to do these exercises with a big shell on your back.

Ludwig needs to take a break from Ring Fit Adventure, but World 12 beckons, and he desires to get that “play for x consecutive days” achievement out of the way so he doesn't have to do that again. That means he'll have to play on Saturday! Or at least turn the game on. Let Ludwig know if you feel bad for him that Scarecruel was a fake person and Ludwig can't have her.

Click here to see if Ludwig plays Ring Fit Adventure for the desired amount of consecutive days!
World 11 is handled quite differently in terms of narrative when it reappears as World 34.

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