Gamers will soon get a chance to compete at the highest levels of the Sport of Fitness despite their utter refusal to work out or eat better. Much like sedentary fans who love video games featuring the NHL, NFL and MLB, lazy, couch-bound followers of the CrossFit Games will soon be able to spend countless hours improving virtual fitness without addressing actual fitness.
CrossFit Media representatives confirmed that upcoming console release “McKernan 2017” will allow players to build a fitness athlete they can train and customize in preparation for virtual CrossFit Games seasons involving creative tests of fitness.
Players will be able to unlock and play as CrossFit superstars such as Mat Fraser and Katrin Davidsdottir, as well as stars of past CrossFit Games, such as 2012 Matt Chan with period-accurate tattoo progression and 2009 Mikko Salo, who is unable to perform double-unders.
Without addressing their own health and nutrition in any way, gamers can carefully develop the fitness of their avatars, acquiring upgraded gear, sponsorships and special moves that can be used in multiplayer competitions. Players will be able to choose from arenas like Aromas, Carson and Madison, as well as exotic locations such as Shangri-La, Atlantis, and the moon, where gravity makes 7,000-lb. deadlifts possible. Easter-egg cheat codes are also hidden in the game: “Spealler Mode” makes body-weight movements effortless, while “Bachmeyer Mode” allows athletes to automatically repeat a perfect rep sequence several times for a top score.
Players can also purchase and spend “Fran Points” to customize characters. For example, fans can obtain a 12-gauge shotgun for four-time CrossFit Games champion Rich Froning or a pair of Zubaz pants for Danny Broflex. Other items can be unlocked and applied to a player’s avatar: Stacie Tovar’s classic white shorts become available if a gamer completes an unbroken set of 30 handstand push-ups, while 10 consecutive triple-unders unlock Lucas Parker’s body hair and beard.
Special moves include bar slams, selfies with fans and a variety of signature fist pumps, and athletes can be supercharged for brief periods with “pre-workout boosters” earned during gameplay.
Professional gamer Desmond Kirkpatrick was impressed with a demo version of the title, to be released on PlayStation and Xbox One this summer.
“I absolutely hate fitness but love this game,” said Kirkpatrick, a Brit who obviously played as Sam Briggs. “During the Open, I really focused on developing Briggs’ strength because her conditioning stats are pretty much maxed out, and she’s super lean already, so I fed her with a modified Zone Diet protocol featuring greatly increased fat intake. I used a few Fran Points to customize Sam with a much-needed tan for the Games.”
Kirkpatrick said he was thrilled actual fitness had been eliminated completely from CrossFit but for small movements of the thumbs and fingers.
The Electronic Software Rating Board has labeled the game “E for everyone,” though the product comes with an advisory: “If you or your children experience significant declines in fitness or muscle mass along with increases in blood pressure, BMI and body fat, please stop playing and actually do CrossFit once in a while.”