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These games will help train your brain

19th January 2021 Print

Self-improvement is a hot topic these days. Everyone wants to live as the improved version of themselves, and naturally, this leads them to “brain training.” This is where you regularly participate in activities that are geared towards improving your overall cognitive abilities. As a result, apps like Lumosity and others have become very popular. However, there are also many traditional games that will help improve your brain processing as well. Let’s take a look at some of them.


You may remember Risk as the board game of conquest. Here, players are tasked with taking over swaths of land on a global map and defending it from opposing players. While you may not have consciously realized it, Risk is a multifaceted game that has elements of skill and is rooted in maths and probability. This makes it both enjoyable to play, and a great way to boost your mental abilities.

In the game of Risk, the goal is to take over the entire world (or game board) by conquering the territory held by opposing players. To achieve this, you must devise a plan of attack but also ensure that your territories are secure. You need to divide your troops and push into enemy strongholds to eventually win the game. Aside from strategic planning, you also build quick math and reasoning skills. 


It’s unimaginable that there is anyone alive today that isn’t familiar with the game of Tetris. This classic video game of colored blocks and organization has long been a favorite of many people around the world. While you may think of Tetris as simply an enjoyable time-waster, it actually has many remarkable mental benefits. 

According to studies performed by the Mind Research Network in New Mexico, Tetris actually increases grey matter, the part of the brain that is involved in memory, muscle control, and your senses like hearing and sight. Your processing powers are also increased from the spatial awareness-oriented gameplay.



Sudoku is a simplistic game you play on paper pads but, as anyone who has ever tried it can tell you, it becomes addictive very quickly! These are essentially number placement puzzles that require you to complete a partially filled grid without repeating a digit from 1-9 within a 3x3 square. The puzzles have been prominently featured in newspapers for decades. While Sudoku is a fun and pleasant pastime, studies have shown that it also helps to slow Alzheimer’s, improve concentration, promote problem solving skills, and much more. 

Cluedo (Clue)

Many people are already familiar with Clue but if you haven’t played it before, this may end up being the next game you break out during board game nights with your friends! Here you are trying to solve a fictional murder by collecting clues and putting together the pieces of what happened. Looking back on it now, the game certainly was a step above other home games of the time, and posed more of a challenge. It also can be attributed to some mind expanding properties as well. While you are playing the game of Clue, you are also training your logical thinking, decision making, cooperation, and general problem solving capabilities. 


For pure logic and reasoning skills, the classic game of Mastermind cannot be beaten. This two-player game is a code-breaking simulator that is exceptionally easy to pick up, but can be very challenging. As the “codebreaker” you will try to determine the “mastermind’s” color code on a decoding board through a series of attempts, with the mastermind giving you feedback after each round. Logic is heavily in play here, and you will also essentially be testing hypotheses and scientific reasoning as well. 


Of course, chess is one of the board games that is most attributed to increasing your brain power, and the reasons are clear. The game of chess has some sensational benefits that carry over to many other aspects of your life. While you are studying to better understand the game, your memory is expanded dramatically. Spatial awareness is also a major contributing skill. Pattern recognition, reasoning, problem solving, strategic thinking, and various other abstract elements are working in every game of chess you play. Over the long term, you are greatly increasing your brain power in dramatic ways. 

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