It seems like the secret to success for any trainer workout is distraction. Whether that means focusing on holding a certain wattage & cadence, or thinking about something else entirely, if you can distract yourself from the fact that you’re riding in place, your workouts will be far more successful.
That’s probably why we’re witnessing the ‘gamification’ of training thanks to the rise of the smart trainer. Video games are always a popular distraction, and if you can combine that with a way to maintain fitness in a fun way that doesn’t feel like training, it’ll likely be a winning combination.
That’s what the team behind Hustle City hope to produce with the latest trainer-based cycling video game. Calling it an experimental project, James Grady from Mission Crit teamed up with his creative partner Marcus Cheek who are both life long cyclists and former bike messengers.
Claiming to be the “first episodic, smart trainer, cycling game,” Hustle City, “is the timely and timeless story of Will Baldwin, a young black man who gets pulled into the thrilling underground world of urban bike messengers.” Basically, an attempt to capture the rush of real world bike messengers, without the real world risk.
A big part of the game is the inclusion of steering input – something that is still fairly limited in various trainer programs. Like the original Zwift Future Works set up, steering is controlled through your phone which you mount to your handlebars. The goal of the game is to steer your character through traffic in time to make your pickups and deliveries, without getting taken out by traffic.
The phone runs the game app, and also senses your steering inputs, and then broadcasts the game to your TV through an AirPlay Mirroring Receiver like Apple TV or Roku Premiere. You’ll also need a compatible smart trainer with Bluetooth like those from Wahoo, Tacx, and Elite.
Hoping to release the full game by Fall, 2021, Hustle City is currently limited to Beta testing with just the first episode available for testing. More will come as the game gets closer to launching, and hopefully being fully funded. Follow along at the link below, and you can sign up in case additional Beta testing spots become available.