Product Type: Nintendo Nintendo DS games
Newest Review: ... by doing a Brain Age Check which consists of three different games and at the end you receive your Brain Age, which starts off very high in... more
More Brain Training (DS)
Member Name: kat1234
More Brain Training (DS)
Advantages: Challenging, games are short
Disadvantages: annoying virtual guide, some games can be monotonous
I enjoy puzzle games and like to keep my brain fresh by trying to use it a bit each day so the idea of a game on my DS that would combine the two seemed good to me. I bought more brain training online for around £15 despite not owning the first game in the series as I wanted the most up to date version.
The game is designed to be played for a few minutes each day to work your brain - the idea being that anyone can fit this into their schedule. It is also designed so that anyone, even those not used to playing computer games, can play - you do not need to press any buttons to play, you can write your answers on the screen using the stylus or, for some games, simply speak your answer. The DS can then pick up your answer using the in built microphone.
The games are all short and designed to exercise your brain's ability to perform different tasks, for example arithmetic and vocabulary tasks. There is a calendar in built and this allows you to monitor your progress over time. The game will use the tasks to calculate and give you your calculated brain age score - eeek!
Taking you through the exercises is a virtual man's face (annoying!). He talks to you about how you are doing via a speech bubble. If I had the option, I would like to turn this feature off!
As well as the brain age check feature, you can use the training mode which allows you to select which games you would like to play. There are also handy features away from the game to allow you to take a break from training - there are various Sudoku grids and a game that I enjoy called Germ Busters. This is meant for 'brain relaxation' and is similar to TETRIS, you have to manoeuvre different coloured germs into blocks of colour to clear the screen. This is actually my favourite game of all!
It is worth noting that not all games are available to play immediately, but they will gradually become unlocked as you play the other games.
This game is maths based. You are given the numbers in the sum and the answer and you have to work out what the mathematical sign in the sum is (+. -. / or x). The aim is to work through the list of sums against the clock and the quicker you do it the better your score. If you get one incorrect you are penalised with a higher score. I find this quite stressful due to the against the clock feature, which can make me panic. Also, sometimes the console does not recognise your symbol correctly, so you need to make sure that you write this clearly. It's an easy game to get to grips with though and does work your brain.
Not one of my favourite games but then I'm not exactly what you'd call musically gifted either. It's really a memory test as you are given a virtual keyboard and they play a tune, highlighting which keys are pressed. You then repeat the tune from memory. I personally find this quite hard.
A number of letters are arranged in a circle. These are an anagram of a word and you are against the clock to identify the word. The number of letters increases as you progress. Again, you need to ensure that you write clearly so that the console can recognise the word that you have written.
A maths based game where you are effectively a cashier and are given a price and some coins as payment. You then have to select the correct coins to give as change. This is again against the clock, a factor which I find stressful, but enjoyable.
I find this one really challenging. You need to turn the volume up on your DS to play this. The console will then say two or three words at once and you have to identify which words have been said. You can have a few guesses and if you are incorrect, they will identify a few letters in each word to give you a clue. You can also listen to the words a few times. This game is really unique and challenging and one that I enjoy.
Another maths based game. This one can be played on normal or hard difficulty so you can work at improving your skills. You have to answer the maths questions but one of the numbers is taken from the previous sum and you need to remember what this was as it is scribbled out. This requires good memory and concentration skills. Enjoyable and challenging.
**Days and Dates**
Not a favourite of mine. The console will ask questions such as 'tell me what day of the week it was 10 days ago' and you have to write your answer in. I find this extremely challenging as, with a young baby, I barely know which day of the week it is that day!
This one is fun and you really need to concentrate. It starts off ok, but I find the latter levels nigh on impossible as they speed up. Basically you watch a race and, imparticular, an individual runner in that race. You have to keep track of their position in that race, so when they overtake or are overtaken remember to promote or demote them. Fine when the overtaking is every now and then but very hard when people are flying past left, right and centre! Challenging.
**Determine the Time**
This one is to do with how you see images. You are shown different images of clock - analogue and digital - at different angles, upside down, mirror images etc and you need to write the time. The quicker you do it, the better your score. This one is ok but a little monotonous.
**Calculate the Height**
You are given a block with three vertical columns, A, B and C. This is greyed out so you can't see inside but cubes are dropped into each column and you need to remember the height of each column at the end of the game. Again, this speeds up and gets more difficult as the game progresses so becomes increasingly challenging.
I think that there is a good variety of games and that each tests a different skill area. I tend to find that I play some games more than others, but this is personal preference. I also like the fact that, when you complete a game you are given a speed to show you how good you are - for example jet speed or walking speed. Your result is also plotted on a graph so that you can compare how you have done with your previous attempts.
These are the types of games that I enjoy, but I can see why others would find these boring as the games are really short and could become monotonous and repetitive. There is no real depth to the games as, once you have mastered them, there is nowhere further to go.
I completely agree with the concept that this is to be played for a few minutes each day, it is not a game that you can play for hours on end. However, I do not think that this is necessarily a bad thing. The game will appeal to people into puzzle games and it definitely tests and works your brain. It is also enjoyable to play and there will be at least one or two games that everyone will enjoy. The price online seems to be around £10 for this now, which I think is about right - it is a good stocking filler.
Summary: Brain Work Out