TUCSON, Ariz. — If homework is your idea of a good time, "Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain" is your next Switch assignment.
A collection of minigames geared to test and strengthen your memory, reaction time, and ability to make quick calculations, the game is an extension of the mid-aughts "Brain Age" craze on Nintendo DS and Wii.
Back then, the self-improvement-minded games promised players they would train their brains so that they could lower their mental ages by upping their agility.
Even though the science behind the games may be dubious, the minigames in the franchise are still fun and challenging enough to stand on their own.
Multiplayer is the most exciting new addition to the formula.
You can take on friends and family in timed challenges head-to-head or opt to load your "ghost" data to the cloud, allowing players worldwide to go against you in simulated matchups.
The games included are a mix of the best from the past and some new entries. Most are based on the concept of quick calculations and reactions.
One of the most compelling games copies the whack-a-mole concept, challenging you to match a picture as its copy pops out from a hole on a grid.
Dry presentation and a lack of variety in the games in the offing drags down the package. DLC drops that expand the content range would be greatly appreciated, mainly if free.
The challenge of coming back day after day to measure your progress as you reduce your completion times and up your accuracy — landing higher scores — is the most compelling draw.
As it stands, the content level in "Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain" feels just about right for a $30 game. If you throw yourself into its ongoing challenges and benchmarking, you'll probably play it just back every day for months.
The publisher provided a review code.
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