I hope you're ready for some nostalgia, DS owners. I'm sure many of you remember the popular Brain Age series of games, a group of four titles that released over the courses of 2005-2012. Needless to say, it's been a crazy long time since we've seen anything from this series, so much so that I'm sure some may have forgotten about it. Never fear, though! Nintendo just seems really keen on bringing back a lot of their game series, even the more obscure ones, to their current-gen console. In a new trailer posted on their Japanese official YouTube channel, a new Brain Age game is announced for Nintendo Switch! That's right: Brain Age is back, and this time, it's bringing with it a whole host of new ideas and features that really take advantage of the Nintendo Switch hardware and all of its weird-but-cool functionality.

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Before we get to the exciting new goodies, though, let's recap. I know not everyone played Brain Age after all, and there's a whole new generation who might not know what it is. In essence, the games serve as ways to train your brain and keep it active through the use of short puzzles, math quizzes, and other gameplay mechanics. All of it was based on the research and studies of Japanese neuroscientist Ryuta Kawashima, whose likeness appears as the game's sort of mascot, talking to the player via way of a digital floating head. As the player completes different exercises and puzzles, the game scores your brain and gives it an "age", determining whether it's young or old, and tracking your progress as you play more. This is where the name 'Brain Age' actually comes from. There's been some debate among scientific communities how effective the games actually are at training your brain, especially considering the debates surrounding Kawashima's own research, but they have a very positive reception overall in terms of usefulness and just straight-up fun.

As mentioned, the new Brain Age for Switch is receiving all sorts of new gameplay ideas. Thanks to the IR sensor features found within the joy-cons, the game can 'scan' your hand and determine what you're doing with them. For example, this can be used to play Rock, Paper, Scissors with an opponent, or solve math problems by holding up a certain amount of fingers. In a new shift for the series, the new game will also feature different multiplayer modes, meaning players will split their Joy-Cons individually and play the game together, Mario Party style. A lot of traditional series puzzles and problems make a return as well. You may have some doubts, though, since there's no stylus for the Switch. After all, part of the fun from the DS Brain Age games was using the stylus to write, draw, and solve problems. Thankfully, you don't have to worry there either! Remarkably, Nintendo is finally bringing an official stylus to the Nintendo Switch, made with a soft nub specifically for use on the Switch's touchscreen. This is big news, not only for Brain Age, but for other Switch games that could benefit from a stylus, such as Super Mario Maker 2 and The World Ends With You.

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You can check out the trailer for Brain Age down below, but keep in mind it's all in Japanese. The announcements made in the trailer are Japan-specific; Brain Age for the Switch will be releasing on December 27th, 2019 in Japan, with the Switch stylus releasing exclusively in the country on the same day. The stylus is priced at 864 yen (roughly 8 US dollars). There's been no word on when we can expect the game and stylus overseas, but considering how much of a following Brain Age has, it shouldn't be long before we hear more. If you want to try out the other games in the series, the first two are only available on the original Nintendo DS. The fourth game in the series, Concentration Training, is available for Nintendo 3DS. But we all know you're probably here for the nostalgia: The trailer is a good six minutes long, and Brain Age has never looked better.

Tanner
Tanner

Tanner is a freelance writer. He enjoys all things video games, particularly the weirder ones, and can often be found drinking coffee and trying to get through his backlog.

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