- More choices and more variety becomes available the more your play.
- The Suduko games alone are enough to keep you busy.
- You can play against friends and compare times and scores.
- A game both kids and adults can enjoy and learn from.
- Many of the games are timed and sometimes when you're writing with the stylus in a hurry it thinks your answers are wrong even when they're right.
- The microphone hardly ever understands exactly what you're saying.
- Sometimes the exercises can get boring and repetitive.
Full ReviewEarlier this winter I was taken completely by surprise when my wife told me she wanted a Nintendo DS for Christmas. I'm wasn't quite sure what a 30 year old woman would do with a portable video game console, but I didn't argue with her! Apparently she had seen a commercial on TV for Brain Age and wanted to give it a try. My wife really likes puzzles and brain teasers so this was right up her alley.
With the popularity of computers and cell phones with calculators I figured this type of game was a great idea. People are starting to rely too much on electronics for their math skills and aren't using their brain (myself included). I had a feeling I was going to struggle a little with the math exercises and I was right.
The game allows for multiple profiles so you and your friends can all train your brain and keep track of your improvements. I entered my name and was presented with a brain age test. This test gauges your current brain age. My brain age was 89 years old. I was more than a little embarrassed since I am more than half a century younger than that. My wife got a good chuckle out of it since her age was 28 or something crazy like that.
The game takes you through a daily training routine to give your brain the daily workout it needs. Apparently the exercises were designed by a doctor in Japan. The exercises were formulated to keep your mind sharp and it only takes a few minutes a day to complete them. It has a number of daily mathematical brain teasers, puzzles and flash card exercises plus Sudoku as an additional feature. These days I find myself playing Sudoku more than any other video game I own.
I was pretty disappointed in my multiplication abilities to say the least. The game is not only looking for the correct answer but it looks for the correct answer in a timely fashion. Once I figured out that time was critical I did much better but really struggled with basic mathematics. I did well with reading and word games but needed to do a lot of training in the calculation games. They also have low to high, head count, and all sorts of different puzzles. After a couple weeks of training I saw improvements in all games and puzzles and then took the brain age test again and found a 65 year improvement down to 24 years of age. I did see a big improvement but not sure if I strengthened my brain or just remembered the answers from two weeks of playing. I'll let you decide.
One other feature we get a kick out of is the picture drawing. From time to time the game gives you three objects to draw and then shows what it expected and then it shows you what your other friends drew. Some of those are hilarious. My wife finds some of the exercises rather frustrating, especially the head count exercise. Some days the activities can be pretty boring, and I wish you had the option of adding new exercises. However, the game only unlocks other exercises until you've reached a certain level of play. Some people will probably find this game boring. But for no other reason I would purchase this game just for the Sudoku puzzles. Even if you're not interested in training your brain, the 100 or so Suduko puzzles are worth the price.
This Brain Age game along with Brain Age 2 can be played on either the Nintendo DS Lite or the new Nintendo DSi console. Since the DSi was released just a short time ago you can find a lot of great Nintendo DS deals online.