When I woke up this morning, it was -1 (Fahrenheit) outside. That’s -18.3 Celsius for all you metric-minded folk. Regardless of how you gauge temperature, that’s cold.
When it’s cold like this, riding outside is out of the question. It’s rollers, the trainer, or nothing. The thing is, though, after a while you get tired of movies. You get tired of music. You want to ride with your friends. You want to race.
And that’s why I’ve invented — in my mind, anyway — the most awesome video game for cyclists ever.
I call it “Bicycle Race(tm).”
Here’s how it works.
In Bicycle Race (BR for short), you ride your actual bicycle, either on a trainer or on rollers. You compete against other cyclists — either computerized racers based on historical cycling champions, or other real riders in online mode — as you race several kinds of events.
Instead of using a handheld controller like most video games, BR comes with a wireless cadence sensor and a wireless speed sensor, which relay info to your gaming console (I’m thinking Xbox, cuz it’s got a good established gaming network established). You then ride either your rollers or trainer to play the game. Easy!
Without even trying hard, I can think of a number of great playing modes for BR. For example:
- Drag Race: You and as many online friends as you would like race over whatever distance you would like. First one across the finish line wins.
- Velodrome: Race against others in a virtual velodrome. If you touch wheels, you “virtually” crash, getting to see what the velodrome pileup looks like, without the inconvenience of the actual carnage. If you’re riding a non-fixed-gear in the Velodrome game, your cadence will be monitored: you coast, you crash.
- Team Time Trial: See how good you are at working together as you and your teammates (either computerized or real players online) race against other teams (also either computerized or actual online teams). Careful of touching virtual wheels! Best time wins.
- Race the Legends: Of course, you don’t actually have a chance of racing with the legends, but what if Lance Armstrong were forced to carry an extra 150 pounds? Could you beat him then? Choose your handicap, and then see if you can hang.
- Race Yourself: Last week, you did your favorite TT course in 19:15. How fast can you do it today? Race your “ghost” and improve your best time.
- series: Get together a group of guys, call yourselves a league and have a whole series of races, keeping cumulative score of who’s on top.
The possibilities are close to endless.
I Know, I Know
Yeah, I know that there are trainers out there that let you race against the computer. But those things are expensive. As in thousands of dollars. I, on the other hand, am talking about something that plugs into your Xbox, attaches to your bike, and uses the trainer or rollers you’ve already got. I’m talking about something that costs $150, tops.
It’s not like the technology for this kind of game isn’t out there. My kids play Dance Dance Revolution online — jumping around spastically (I had no “good dancer” genes to pass on to my kids, alas) on the dance pad controller, competing against other kids all over the US (and elsewhere, for all I know)
BR will be a huge hit. I’m confident of it. Now, I’d appreciate it if you’d loan me a couple million dollars to develop it. Thanks!