Wake Up Your Brain with These Games

Whether you’re on the commute to work, sitting at your office desk, or winding down at home, there are lots of occasions when you need to kick your brain into gear. It’s often not as simple as just hoping it will turn itself on; sometimes you need to do some work to get the cogs whirring. Thankfully our brains love a challenge, especially a fun one, and often playing a game is one of the best ways to give your brain that wake-up call it needs. These are a handful of games that are readily available and designed to get your grey matter moving.


Poker is a brilliant game for getting a sleepy brain active as it involves not only knowing (or learning) the rules but implementing them in a logical way. Thinking logically under pressure is a great skill to have in your arsenal, not just for poker but in all areas of life. As well as this, in order to properly work out whether to fold or raise, you’ll need to get better at working out probabilities and pot odds. Although this comes a little later in your poker career, this sort of mental arithmetic can be pretty challenging and a great way to keep your mind sharp. This US poker map shows which states allow online poker, as well as the ones that are currently discussing legislation. If your state already allows online poker then you can practice on any site straight away; if not, then you might want to stick to playing with your friends for now.


Wordle has been making the news as it’s the latest game that has really caused a global craze. The game’s brilliance lies in its simplicity: the object of the game is to guess a five-letter word in six steps or less. Each time you get a letter correct it turns orange and, if you guess it correctly in the right place in the word, then it turns green. Thinking up words that have plenty of high-frequency letters is key to winning this game, but people regularly share their own strategies online.


We’ve got a chess revival on our hands at the moment, thanks in no small part to the hit Netflix show The Queen’s Gambit. Whilst chess used to be a game that a lot of us thought was sort of nerdy, Anya Taylor-Joy has made it elegant and en vogue again. Like poker, chess relies on great logic skills but also improves memory. Any chess player will know the importance of studying opening moves, of which there are many. To retain all of this information requires a great memory, but you also need to remember the moves of your opponent if you are to try and work out what their next move might be.


This is a great game for improving problem-solving skills. Sudoku is played on a grid that is made up of 9 different 3×3 grids. Within each individual square, each number from 1-9 must only appear once, and along each full row and column, the same rule applies. In beginner puzzles, you’ll find that more squares have been pre-filled to make the challenge easier whilst, as you progress in difficulty, fewer squares are filled in. Though it is number-based, this game isn’t so much a mathematical workout, but rather a logical one.


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