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DS 'Brain-Training' coming to US

Filed under: Nintendo DS
Posted by Allison on January 30, 2006 9:50 AM
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Nintendo has today announced Brain Age(TM): Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day, the DS application which has caused a "brain-training" craze across Japan, will hit the US on April 17th (followed by Big Brain Academy on May 30th) . Brain Training (as the game is known in Japan), is not a game, in the traditional sense, but more of a brain exercise machine. It has maintained the top position on Japan's video game charts for several weeks now, fueled largely by older players who want to sharpen their thinking skills.

According to the press release, Brain Age, "presents players with a series of fun mental brain-training challenges that incorporate word memorization, counting and reading. It even includes sudoku number puzzles, which have become extremely popular features in newspapers around the country." Sudoku? I'm so in.
Read Nintendo's press release
A great read about the success of the game in Japan

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Nintendo Press ReleasePLAYERS FLEX THEIR MENTAL MUSCLES WITH BRAIN AGE FOR NINTENDO DS

Incredible 'Brain-Training' Craze in Japan Moves across Ocean to the United States

REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 30, 2006 ? After decades of exercising players' thumbs, Nintendo is now moving to their minds. Brain Age?: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day for Nintendo DS? will help players flex their mental muscles. Brain Age represents the first in a series of U.S. brain-training titles that already have taken Japan by storm.

Brain exercise has been a hot topic lately. Baby Boomers and test-prepping school kids alike want to challenge themselves. In fact, a recent Time magazine article cited Brain Age in its exploration of the trend of people looking for ways to exercise their brains.

But Baby Boomers picking up a video game system? It's not as far-fetched as you might think. Three separate titles in the brain-training series are currently a huge craze in Japan. Each of them has achieved sales of more than 1 million units, with the most recent title hitting that milestone in less than a month. The craze has been fueled largely by older players, many of whom had never played a video game system before.

Brain Age (known as Brain Training in Japan) was inspired by the work of Professor Ryuta Kawashima, a prominent Japanese neuroscientist. His studies evaluated the effect of performing reading and mathematic exercises to help stimulate the brain.

"Young or old, everyone looks for ways to get a mental edge," says Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America's executive vice president of sales & marketing. "Our brain-training series, led by Brain Age, builds on the popularity of word and number puzzles and acts as a treadmill for the mind."

Brain Age presents players with a series of fun mental brain-training challenges that incorporate word memorization, counting and reading. It even includes sudoku number puzzles, which have become extremely popular features in newspapers around the country. The distinctive touch screen of Nintendo DS lets users write their responses, just as though they were using a PDA. Players even turn the Nintendo DS sideways to make it feel more familiar, like a book. The more often users challenge themselves, the better they become at the tasks and the lower their estimated DS "brain age."

Nintendo's brain-training series of games represent a cornerstone of Nintendo's aim to expand the world of video games to new audiences. The second title in the series, Big Brain Academy (known as Brain Flex in Japan) offers players 15 fun activities that test their brain powers in areas like logic, memory, math and analysis. Up to eight people can play with a single game card, and each activity takes less than a minute to complete.

Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day is rated E for Everyone and launches on April 17. Big Brain Academy is Rated E for Everyone and launches May 30.

The worldwide leader and innovator in the creation of interactive entertainment, Nintendo Co., Ltd., of Kyoto, Japan, manufactures and markets hardware and software for its popular home and portable video game systems. Each year, hundreds of all-new titles for the best-selling Game Boy? Advance SP, Nintendo DS? and Nintendo GameCube? systems extend Nintendo's vast game library and continue the tradition of delivering a rich, diverse mix of quality video games for players of all ages. Since the release of its first home video game system in 1983, Nintendo has sold more than 2 billion video games and more than 360 million hardware units globally, creating enduring industry icons such as Mario? and Donkey Kong? and launching popular culture franchise phenomena such as Metroid?, Zelda? and Pok?mon?. A wholly owned subsidiary, Nintendo of America Inc., based in Redmond, Wash., serves as headquarters for Nintendo's operations in the Western Hemisphere.

For more information about Nintendo, visit the company's Web site at www.nintendo.com.






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