Have you ever heard the phrase, “smart phones, dumb people?” In some respects, you have to admit it’s kind of true. We walk around with devices capable of searching for any information that humankind has complied and cataloged on the internet, and we use them to get on IMDB to prove that our friends don’t know whose voice was in the latest blockbuster CGI film. When we’re stuck in a long line or maybe sitting on the toilet, we check Facebook, then turn to a mindless game like Candy Crush to occupy our time. Don’t let this be you! There are mobile games out there that can help you use down time to stimulate your mind and help you learn problem solving skills.
This game consists of a four by four square of sliding tiles. Tiles appear two at a time, displaying either a 2 or a 4. The object of the game is to slide tiles displaying the same number into each other. When you do, they’ll combine. So if you slide two 2’s together, they’ll combine into a 4. With each swipe, you move all the tiles on the board, combining any identical numbers that touch. The ultimate goal is to reach 2048. It sounds simple, but this game involves a lot of strategy, teaching you spatial awareness, as well as inspiring you to contemplate exponential binary numbers.
Plants vs. Zombies is a strategy game simple and friendly enough for kids to enjoy, but challenging enough to become addictive to adults. In this game you defend your home from zombies in the most logical way… with weaponized plants in your yard. There is an arsenal of plants available to you, including peashooters, catapults that shoot kernels (“Kernel-pults”), fiery jalapeños, cherry bombs, and all sorts of aggressive shrubbery. Each plant must be purchased with sunshine, a resource you must manage with your sunflower plants. By planning your defense against waves of zombies, you learn planning and cost-benefit analysis skills as you decide which plants will give you the most bang for your buck.
Flow Free and its expansion Flow Free Bridges are addictive and simple, and greatly increase spatial awareness. Flow Free features game boards in different sizes, starting off easy at 5×5 and ending in nigh-unto-impossible at 9×9. Each game board is decorated with various colors of dots, two each of any given color. The point of the game is to: 1. Connect the dots of matching colors, 2. Not cross any of the paths, and 3. To fill the entire game board. As you play, you start to recognize patterns that will help you solve the puzzles. This game also comes with hundreds of levels, making it a sound investment at $0.99. Flow Free Bridges adds to the excitement by introducing puzzles that can only be solved by crossing the streams at some point, which is where you get to use your one bridge. This games offers so much: pattern recognition, speed thinking, spatial awareness, even color matching on the easier levels for children.
Brain It On is a puzzle-solving game with a unique physics engine and the aspect of drawing elements of the puzzle with your finger. Each board is different, asking you to complete increasingly difficult tasks, including tipping things over, getting balls into certain spots and pulling magnets together. The game also tracks your time and number of objects drawn for an added challenge factor. This game teaches logic and physics, and will get you thinking of possible solutions even after you’ve put the phone down.
Next time you’re stuck in a line or at an awkward function, try one of these educational games. Remember that many IT services like Ottawa managed services provide mobile support, and they’ll be happy to assist you with any issues that come up with your phone if you have them. Engage your mind with these games rather than wasting your time!