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RPG Metanoia: Computer Gaming & Physical Activity

Posted Jan 01 2011 1:51am

The Official RPG Metanoia Poster
(Taken from the Internet)

Proudly Made in the Philippines

In the recently concluded Metro Manila Film Festival (December 25, 2010 – January 1, 2011) showcasing seven locally-produced films, “RPG Metanoia” stood out to be the best, although it won the third best picture only.

“RPG Metanoia” is the Philippines first 3D animated full-length movie which successfully proved that Filipino animators can be comparable with the best animators in the world. That’s not an exaggerated statement since many animators in Walt Disney and Pixar films are Filipinos. According to published reports, the production of the film took for about 4 years to complete and was rendered by 26 Filipino animators. It is produced by Ambient Media, Thaumatrope Animation and Star Cinema (ABS-CBN Film Productions, Inc). It featured the the voices of local actors, like Aga Muhlach, Vhong Navarro, Eugene Domingo, Mika dela Cruz, and Zaijan Jaranilla.

The animation is superb, but the 3D effects leave much to be desired and can be relegated as a pure gimmick. It seems the film is not intended to be viewed in 3D, not like the effects seen in Avatar or Toy Story 3. Moreover, the sound could still be improved by making it in high definition surround sound formats. Almost always, the film’s music is more clear and audible than the spoken words.

Despite these technical shortcomings, “RPG Metanoia” is still highly recommended for kids of all ages. The visuals are mostly Filipino and the story is coherent.

Synopsis

RPG Metanoia revolves around an avid online gamer named Nico, an 11-year old boy who lives an ordinary child's life. He is seemingly a frail boy, but when he is playing the MMORPG (Massively Multi-players Online Role Playing Game) called Metanoia, he is an unpredictable vagabond armed with a magic yoyo and with uncanny speed and agility in his programmed set of skills.

Nico has low self-esteem and is only getting his guts from playing Metanoia. That is why when he and his friends were faced with an adversity from local bullies, their world would be shattered. But they found a saving grace from a new female friend, May, which inspired them to continue their online endeavor.

However, the Metanoia network was infected with a virus affecting the whole internet, most computers and the minds of gamers all over the world. It is up to Nico, his friends and the other remaining Metanoia players to stop the virus from taking control of the online and offline world. But to do that, Nico must muster his courage, and discover the true hero he really is.

Strong Message on Physical Activity

Computer and video games have become a threat to parents of little kids and teens, not only because children are saving their lunch money in order them to frequent internet cafés/shops and play their favorite games, but also because of the long time they spent being sedentary or inactive in front of the computer which may result to obesity and other chronic diseases.

In “RPG Metanoia,” the mother sends a strong message to Nico to go out and play physical games and sports under the sun because she noticed that her son is already looking pale and weak. Of course, Nico dreaded the idea because he knows for himself that he is not good in playing sports and could not even master riding his bicycle. But when the local bullies forbid Nico and his friends to play in their favorite internet café anymore, they are forced to play physical games. Knowing the Nico is not good at these games, Nico’s crush, May, cooked up a scheme with the rest Nico’s friends to let him win the games they play.

And so a series of traditional Filipino games that children of this generation have forgotten to play are shown and demonstrated in the movie – patintero, taguan (hide and seek), piko (hopscotch), siato, tumbang preso, sipa, agawan-base and habulan. And everytime Nico would come home dirty after the games, his mother would assist him in cleaning and putting band-aids in his scratches. But his mom would always be happy with her son.

It’s amazing how the movie intertwined physical activity messages with the plot on computer games. In the end, Nico and his friends became international heroes when found and solved the mysterious computer virus affecting gamers around the world. As for Nico, he found another world outside cyberspace, and he is seen now using his bicycle and dating May.

Here’s hoping that the kids who have seen the movie would get the right message on the importance of physical activity in their daily lives.

Physical Activity Guidelines for Filipino Kids

The National Nutrition Survey (2008) of the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology revealed the following prevalence of overweight and obese Filipinos
• In every 100 preschool (0-5 years old) children, 2 were overweight for their age and 3 were overweight for their height;

• In every 100 children aged 6 – 10 years old, two were overweight;

• In every 100 adolescents aged 11 – 19 years old, about 5 were overweight. The prevalence of overweight adolescent males were higher than their female counterparts; and

• In every 100 adults, 27 are affected with overweight and obesity.

Inappropriate eating habits and lack of physical activity and exercise are the biggest factors in the increase of overweight and obesity among Filipinos.

Early last year, the Department of Health released the Philippine National Guidelines on Physical Activity which prescribed for children, adolescents and young adults (5 – 20 years old) at least 60 minutes of daily physical activities consisting of any or a combination of active daily tasks (like walking, climbing stairs, or doing household or school chores); exercise, dance or sports; and high impact play like traditional Filipino games.

For older children (13 – 20 years old), muscle strengthening and flexible activities are necessary. This means at least 2 – 3 times a week of activities that build muscle and bone strength and flexibility such as weight bearing calisthenics and other load bearing exercises involving the major muscle groups.
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