Give me the smarts
October 10, 2019 10:16 PM   Subscribe

I have a need for brain focus tasks that I'm not getting just living my ho hum life. I look for downloads in Play Store that have brain teasers but all I see are variations of the same Majong and Find the Hidden item.

Would you happen to know of any (non spam, phishing or scam/hacker) sites that have word knowledge quizzes or memory challenges that im not seeing advertised? I'm really good at puzzles and word games, math not so much but anything helps.
posted by The_imp_inimpossible to Computers & Internet (18 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Learn to identify birds by their songs?
posted by fshgrl at 12:13 AM on October 11, 2019

I’m playing Peak Brain Training at the moment - it has a pretty wide selection of original games including word-finding and memory challenges. I’m just using it for entertainment rather than taking seriously any claims to brain training, but there’s enough variety in there to keep me occupied and challenged.

I got it (paid for) on the App Store, looks like it’s also available on Play.
posted by penguin pie at 2:25 AM on October 11, 2019

Last winter, I started buying puzzle magazines at my local grocery store. Old school, I know, but they fill this particular void for me while also reducing screen time.
posted by jdroth at 3:23 AM on October 11, 2019 [3 favorites]

Learn a new language, or something like Morse code.
posted by Glier's Goetta at 4:14 AM on October 11, 2019 [1 favorite]

My partner and I really enjoy The Time's codewords - we actually bought a couple of books full. I don't know if they're also available online.
posted by stillnocturnal at 4:55 AM on October 11, 2019 [2 favorites]

I like the picross luna games.

Sporcle has some pretty solid user-created games and puzzles. This one was surprisingly challenging for me. They also have some logic puzzles that are just brutal.

Frotz might be good.

And for a totally different kind of challenge - hobbies. Every creative hobby that I engage with presents me with puzzles to solve - how to achieve the texture, color, strength, etc, that I want. There's an unending array of things to figure out.
posted by bunderful at 5:07 AM on October 11, 2019

The New York Times crossword is probably one of your best options. Most online puzzles and “brain training” games will eat your time and attention but not give you much for it.

I also like reading articles from Longreads when I’m bored online and want to stretch my mind a little.
posted by Metroid Baby at 5:09 AM on October 11, 2019 [2 favorites]

Do you have any interest in learning another language at all? Intuitively it feels like that would be activating different parts of the brain and I know one social enterprise near me in Glasgow teaches languages to people in nursing homes to postpone dementia etc.
posted by AuroraSky at 5:40 AM on October 11, 2019 [1 favorite]

Chess problems. They give you a board setup and a number of moves, and you have to get to mate in that number of moves.
posted by kevinbelt at 6:00 AM on October 11, 2019

i've started doing crossword puzzles at the table while eating breakfast and then after a week mailing it unfinished to my mom (along with a different blank one for her to start). i don't get to spend much time with her and the puzzles keep both our minds focused and us a little more connected.

i had been doing the sunday roanoke times puzzle with her and just started trying the sunday washington post puzzle. both are printable and free. i had trouble finding a free version of the nytimes crossword on their site but another google suggests that it is syndicated and printable.
posted by noloveforned at 6:24 AM on October 11, 2019 [1 favorite]

Best answer: For a whole bunch of different types of (number, logic, shape) puzzles, try Simon tatham's portable puzzle collection (an Android app).
Lots of difficulty settings, variations, etc.

I nth the language learning and hobby ideas, too. They will feel much more fulfilling, and you'll be more likely to find motivation to continue.
posted by Acari at 6:37 AM on October 11, 2019

What about puzzle games like Hook, Causality, Outfolded, Hocus, Flood It, Topsoil, Kami, or the wonderful Klocki?
posted by dobbs at 6:40 AM on October 11, 2019 [1 favorite]

Have you tried the Will Shortz weekly puzzles? Those seem right up your alley.
posted by Lady Li at 6:56 AM on October 11, 2019

I've been spending a lot of time on PuzzGrid recently--it's a puzzle format that I first saw on the show Only Connect--there's 4 categories of 4 items each, and you have to group them properly, but the categories can be obscure, and there will be several clues that could plausibly fit into more than one category.
posted by pykrete jungle at 7:03 AM on October 11, 2019

Sudoku? Not word based, but definitely scratches the brain teaser itch.

At one of our local dollar stores, puzzle book are abundant. Crosswords, word finds, sudoku, connect the dot, etc.

I also find coloring works. I really have to think about the colors I want to use. Having more than one media makes it interesting. Crayons, pencils, gel pens. There are also stained glass coloring books out there that you can use with watercolor markers. Some adult coloring books are crazy complex and will definitely require focus.
posted by kathrynm at 7:52 AM on October 11, 2019

Does it have to be for a mobile platform?
posted by dgeiser13 at 1:15 PM on October 11, 2019

Response by poster: To dgeiser13, IDEALLY no I prefer to work with my hands or out of a magazine but I dont often keep track of magazines and newspaper puzzles. I am probably losing vision by the foot daily as well but the cell phone apps are where the largest collection of options exist . Thanks everyone for your help I'm going to the Simon Tatham app right now
posted by The_imp_inimpossible at 12:55 PM on October 12, 2019

What Is the Name of This Book?
posted by sammyo at 4:19 AM on November 14, 2019

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