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Friday, January 21, 2022

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 60: I haven't the foggiest idea why there's a fog mechanic

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - It's my third and final time through the fog world, so you get my fog rant again.

This week's KoopaTV Fitness Friday has a lot of potential, as I'm documenting my fitness and wellness activities throughout the week. This week, we're primarily covering Ring Fit Adventure's World 60: Fitness Master Lv. 337. Only 1000 levels away from 1337, which is a joke I already made back in Week 46 when I got to level 337. I'm overlevelled in the meantime at level 395, from the opportunities afforded in last world.

Anyway, World 60 is based off World 37: Extra Fitness Lv. 231, and the log for that happens to be award-winning thanks to the Abs Song. Really, it did win an award. The world is also notable for being the last time the enemies will scale in power and durability, with the dark influence growing stronger and having enemies change from red, blue, green, and yellow to garnet, cobalt, malachite, and ochre. In the normal adventure mode and in Extra Fitness, your player character can scale up with the enemies by purchasing new outfits from the General Store, which progressively get better and better stats. In Fitness Master, that's not the case, since the whole clothing catalogue is available from the start and everything has the same stats. That SHOULD make World 60 the start of a difficulty spike...?

I wrote all of the above without turning the game on first. Let's do that. On Sunday! Ring gave me a short speech about how I need to have good posture both when doing physical training, as well as in every day life. And I shouldn't slouch. ...That's important wisdom for writers in particular, who may often slouch on chairs when trying to type or handwrite things. ...And I have many years of personal experience with that.

Ring Fit Adventure World 60 dialogue core strength good posture everyday situations
I subconsciously straightened up my back while looking at this screenshot in this log.
Did you?


The first level in this sizable two-map world is the Missed Highway. One notable thing I forgot to mention above is that FOG is now a reoccurring mechanic for Ring Fit Adventure levels, especially the courses in this particular spooky world. ...Fog only makes things much worse and even though I've been ranting about it for a very long time now, I'm still upset that some idiots in the game design department decided that fog would be a nice addition to the level design. So when I wasn't running into walls instead of jumping over them because I can't see what's in front of me, I tracked down a Treasure Chaser that gave me 150 coins. There are also Dragon Fruits growing here, which if you collect five of, you can make a Dragon Drink for an instant level up. As for the more powerful enemies? Well, the first enemy group was a sole Cobalt Hoplin—the new now-weakest enemy I'll face, which I can still easily ORKO with a one-range super-effective Fit Skill with reps to spare. The second enemy group was two Cobalt Hoplins and a Malachite Hoplin, and a super-effective three-range Fit Skill can still ORKO these, but when it's not super-effective, I lacked the firepower. By the time I got to the end, I realised I found no Dragon Fruit.

The next course is Bootstrap Tower (Novice) Game Gym, featuring fog. This turns an otherwise among-my-favourites minigame into a crap-shoot where I made many mistakes and wasted a lot of time because I couldn't see ahead. But I still got an A rank on my first try, and won a bonus of 5 Persimmons. (With four, you can make an EXP-doubling Persimmon Smoothie!) The next real course was Misty Corridor, and if the name of that makes it sound like a foggy awful place... that's because it is. The first enemy group was a Yellow Mallusk and an Ochre Hoplin... note that it's a Yellow Mallusk. So they're not totally replaced. They have the same durability and are both ORKO'd. The second enemy group had no new enemies to speak of (though I learned I can ORKO these Darkly Influenced Hoplins with a five-range Fit Skill too if it's super-effective), and afterwards there was a Treasure Chest with a useful Deep Yellow Smoothie for all of my Abs Fit Skills needs.

On the map, I can either go to the next course on the path which has some kind of event attached to it (DIALOGUE!!!), or I can head to the warp zone for some... non-fun. I have two choices for what to do first, so I went with the course, Steadfast Road. This also allegedly has wild growing Dragon Fruit (I collected a grand total of... one), but what makes Steadfast Road not fun is that it is one of my least favourite levels in all of Ring Fit Adventure: it's the Overhead Side Bend cart... in fog. The cart automatically moves forward, unless you're hitting into a wall, and you need to bend yourself (and the Ring-Con) to switch lanes. Except the lanes and what's ahead are covered in dense fog, so you can't really plan ahead! Reasons you'd want to change lanes are to pick up coins or floating EXP Medals, or to avoid the aforementioned walls. Not fun and I didn't have an optimal time!

The second choice is the Abs Set Fitness Gym, offering one Peridot for an A rank or better. ...This is... going to be a challenge, probably. Let's see if I'm up to it. Note the following repetition counts are for difficulty level 30 (of 30):

  1. Knee-to-Chest (x30)—I recently wrote about how my doctor said I should do knee-to-chests to treat my now-remedied bursitis pain.
  2. Plank (x30)—I also wrote in last week's fitness log about how you're supposed to do planks normally and how Ring Fit Adventure wants you to do planks are very different, between the number of reps and time for each rep, and this game also wants your butt up far higher. ...While I was planking on my carpet, I was face-to-face with a spider crawling around. Eek.
    Ring Fit Adventure Abs Set Fitness Gym Plank fog
    The fog extends even to the Fitness Gym! Ugh!

  3. Leg Raise (x30)—I left my Ring-Con very far away from me for this put-the-Ring-Con-down Fit Skill, so I couldn't get up and pause it. So I had to do all thirty of those without drinking anything in-between. A challenge... but at least it's an honest Fit Skill.
  4. Seated Forward Press (x30)—I think of this as the physical motion you'd do while sitting on top of someone and trying to suffocate them. ...N-Not that I've ever d-done that, but this is the same game that expects me to have pulled a bowstring before.
  5. Boat Pose (x16)—You know, I wasn't Boat Posing for a while. Now it's back in my normal set of Fit Skills, so this is a fine ending to this set.


At the end, my average score was a 96, brought down by Planks and sometimes Seated Forward Press. But it's good enough to pass! So I got my Peridot as well as the overworld Treasure Chest in this area, which contained five Black Tea Leaves, good for a money-doubling Black Tea. I ended my workout for today, since I got to 33% of the world completed and now I'm sneezing and I should probably stop.

Ring Fit Adventure Dragaux muscle inspection World 60 Fitness Master Lv. 337
The last muscle inspection was in World 45, led by Abdonis.
I think the last one from Dragaux was World 42.


Back to it on Monday! With this event! And it's... a surprise muscle inspection brought to me by Dragaux? He said it's been a while... we haven't had one in the entirety of Fitness Master mode. The last time was back in Extra Fitness. I actually thought it was a feature of Fitness Master not to have any of them, and I've been meaning to edit that into my intro to Fitness Master article. ...But I guess it's a good thing I didn't, since that'd be FAKE NEWS. Anyway, the task here is to reach the goal of Invisible Temple without using any smoothies. The reason it's called Invisible Temple is because the fog is so dense you can't see much. As for the dark influence, I encountered my first Ochre Kennelbell, and can ORKO it with a super-effective one-range Fit Skill. ...Maybe if you aren't as overleveled as me, you'd need a smoothie to hit that benchmark. (But those aren't allowed in this run!) But so far, I'm not too concerned about the enemy power scaling. ...And Dragaux wasn't concerned about the effect of distractions on my training, saying it makes things interesting.

I wonder if that's why the game developers made fog a mechanic. Because they think it'd be interesting. Ugh.

That gave me access to the second half of the world map, which features this world's Town. I've officially bought out everything in the General Store that doesn't require Zircon, Garnet, or Rose Quartz—and I'll only be receiving more of those later on. There's also still an NPC who sings the Abs Song, but no one else seems to be doing that. I went north of Town to take care of the trio (or quintet, depending on if you count the overworld Hoplin fights) of activities. First, the High-Roller Complex. It's another one of those spike roller levels where you need to tread carefully as they go down conveyor belts... but in fog! (Actually, the fog didn't make much of an impact.) That made a fork that I'll go left-to-right on. First, a Rare Hoplin overworld fight. There's three of them. They give EXP. Anyway, the Game Gym behind those is the Aerochute (Novice) Game Gym, offering a Strength Drink. And it's in... THE FOG.


Ring Fit Adventure Aerochute Game Gym fog Moppets
Did you know that there are silver-coloured tokens below? And you're supposed to glide to them?


The path led me to an overworld Treasure Chest with 500 coins. Yay. And then back down to an overworld Gold Hoplin fight. ...And in an unexpected twist, there were four of them. So I gave them a twist of my own—two Standing Twists. Hah. And behind those was a Thigh Rider (Novice) Game Gym, where you need to drive a vehicle in ridiculous fog so you can't see what's in front of you, including bombs. In fact, I totally missed the big jump at the end... and somehow still got an A rank. And got a Defense Drink.

Fortunately, the next course takes place indoors... and it's also a miniboss fight: the Ghostship Tower. This features two Dark Hoplin+s and the Dark Stomper. The Dark Hoplin+s are positioned in a way where you can hit everyone with a three-range Fit Skill (so five-range is pointless), but knocking them out is also pointless since they can't support the miniboss. Just only use one-range Fit Skills on Dark Stomper until it falls. It has no SUPER ATTACK. I managed it in 6 turns. Might've been seven without smoothie use. Would've been more if I went for the Dark Hoplin+ minions, but when I beat Dark Stomper, they were automatically defeated, too. Dark Stomper dropped a Peridot stone for selling, and I move on to the next course, Turmoil Territory. Uh... despite the promise of turmoil, the fog didn't make an impact. There was an Ochre Stepper, but it's a lot less bulky than Dark Stomper. I'll end Monday here. There's not much of this world left. Two courses, one Battle Gym, and the boss fight.

Ring Fit Adventure Dark Hoplin sat down to rest miniboss fight Ghostship Tower
Dark Hoplin doesn't deserve a rest. It didn't do anything to me and I didn't do anything to it. Though maybe it has an off-screen tiresome life I'm not considering.
I, however, am very deserving of a rest, and this whole Fitness Log proves it.


I rested so much that I skipped Tuesday primarily from sleeping. (Good thing I published Tuesday's KoopaTV article a lot sooner than that.) But I didn't skip Wednesday night... and I have a lot of nervous energy to let out. The first course tonight is the Gazelle Channel, which sounds kinda intense. And... it was, mostly because, despite running rapidly in real life, the game doesn't want to acknowledge I'm “jogging” so it didn't have me actually go through an upward incline... instead I was kinda just in place... for a while... So that's tiring. Gazelle Channel is filled with other gimmicks, too, like railcarts powered by all three types (Squats, Back Press, Chair Pose) on upward inclines... as well as a dreaded Overhead Side Bend cart segment at the end. All in fog. By the end of it, I earned the Overhead-Bend Sage Title for doing more than 3,000 Overhead Bend reps... meaning I'll discontinue that and work on other Abs Fit Skills, like Knee-to-Chest. I'm also level 400 now. Ha.



The next course is much shorter, Disappearance Path. It's notable because Dragon Fruit AND Black Tea Leaves grow here... and are actually findable. And it's a short level to run through, with natural things and not a bunch of stage elements like carts and conveyors. But I'm not here to grind for resources, but to go through the world. So the last thing for today is this world's Battle Gym. But it's got... FIVE rounds of monsters! (More than four!) But I cleared it in a manageable ten turns and won a Peridot stone from the Battle Gym Counter robot. Done for the day.

Ring Fit Adventure World 60 Abdonis fog distract you focused on abs slurp chia seeds
I'm pretty sure Abdonis has never referenced chia seeds before in his characterisation. (I doubt he will again.)
He's either slurping on a Chia-Seed Soda or a Chia-Seed Smoothie, both of which can give him an extra turn in battle.
Spoiler alert: He doesn't drink anything in his boss fight. (Nor does any other boss.)


On Friday, I headed to Six Park. Abdonis recommended that I don't let the fog distract me. Six Park has many squat-powered contraption platforming to leap over cliffs and waterfalls and rivers, but it's remarkably not foggy. Unlike the rest of this awful world. After about two and a half minutes of non-stop squatting, I reached Abdonis and he congratulated me for not being phased by the fog. Again, after seeing what the rest of this world was like, I wouldn't consider Six Park foggy. Maybe Abdonis should've appeared at the world's intro with some fog dialogue instead of Ring giving me a forgettable line about having good posture! (And if it was less forgettable, my back would be in less pain, probably. Not that it is right now, but...)

Ring Fit Adventure Six Park waterfalls squats scenery rocks
If the fog effect was on, you wouldn't be able to see those trees in the background.
Or probably even the waterfalls or the rock pillar two leaps ahead.
And yes, I'm wearing the Abs Master outfit, which is modelled after Abdonis's own clothes.


The boss fight features the Ochre Matta Ray+A, the Ochre Kennelbell+A, Abdonis, the Ochre Kennelbell+B, and the Ochre Matta Ray+B. This calls for a five-range Fit Skill (like the Russian Twist or Standing Twist, if you want to think about the Abs Song) to beat the crowd of minions so we can focus on Abdonis without longer Ab Guard sequences or watching Abdonis get healed. Two to three, likely three ('cause that's what it took me, especially when the Matta Ray+s heal themselves or the Kennelbell+s) five-range Fit Skills will clear out Abdonis's minions, and also about a fourth to a third of his total HP. Then I had a smoothie to boost the power of my Abs Fit Skills by ↑↑, combined with wearing the Abs Master III outfit to increase Abs Fit Skill power by another 5%... and my Seated Ring Raise Lv. 4 did 11,403 damage to put Abdonis at under half health. This triggered Abdonis's SUPER ATTACK of the day, a giant yellow energy chest I had to sit down and do a ~42-second Seated Forward Press to deflect for 10,421 damage on Abdonis. Throughout the fight, Abdonis gave me some “flashy looks”, but they did nothing. I wonder if the Abs Master outfit has a hidden effect that protects me from the debuffs he would otherwise give me. Anyway, after another very strong Knee-to-Chest Fit Skill, Abdonis had very low HP... so one more attack easily defeated him. He dropped a Peridot and admitted my superiority, ending this world and the week.

Ring Fit Adventure Week World 60 Fitness Master Lv. 337 Exercise Log
Abdonis went down SUPER FAST this time.
I don't know how I spent nearly 19 minutes on Six Park in World 37?



The most interesting thing in this world was Ludwig failing to run up the conveyor belt, because fog will never be interesting. Ludwig has a lot of difficulty properly writing conveyor the first time. He keeps trying to type “convenyor” and he's not sure why! Reminder that Week 37 was considered the Best Fitness Log of 2021. Same world design, but back then, there were all of the NPCs that kept singing the Abs Song. Singing through the fog is more fun than not!


World 61's Fitness Log is here, and it features Yellow Dragaux, who goes down even faster than Abdonis.

4 comments :

  1. Fog isn’t fun? I can’t think of any other games with a fog mechanic at the moment, although I know they definitely exist. Plants vs zombies comes to mind now that I spend some time thinking about it. The fog mechanic in that game added a great challenge once you mastered the gameplay. Would you say the fog here offers a great challenge? Your a bit over leveled so I can’t imagine anything they throw at you is too difficult.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. First of all, fog doesn't impact combat segments at all. You don't even need to see to do those, but the enemies are in the foreground.

      Fog impacts the platforming segments and minigames. The platforming is on-rails. It's impossible to fail at it. If you miss a jump because you can't see what's in front of you, you'll probably be lead to a less optimal (and less fun) path through the level, but you'll still get to the end. Fog really just obscures the pretty scenery in the levels that might motivate you to run through them. Your scenic route is replaced with indecipherable fog. That directly makes it less pleasing to your senses.
      In minigames, the fog obscures your objective and path, and it is possible to fail those. However, in both cases, fog is an accessibility issue, punishing players who might have in-real-life worse vision than other players. Maybe their vision isn't perfect. Wot if they're slightly colour-blind?

      In any case, how does any of this serve the game's main goal which is to promote good fitness and wellness to its players?

      Delete
  2. Aha. I would have to agree then that fog is NOT optimal for this game. It seems it’s main function would be obscuring the background so the developers don’t have to make new ones. Do you think ring fit would work better if it wasn’t an onrail game. I mean I thought you’d have to be running the whole time. Onrail games are getting kinda endangered these days, so I suppose it’s nice to see.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you stand still, you aren't moving.
      I think it would work worse, because you'd probably use the Ring-Con's gyro to turn, and that could be... iffy.

      But, yes, this game does reuse level designs and backgrounds often, changing them sometimes by making them nighttime or sunset... or fog.

      Delete

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