Online Brain Training Resources: Brain Metrix Reviewed

The Education Techie reviews tech tools that can help students and teachers. This week, the Techie is taking a look at online brain training resources. Today's review: Brain Metrix.

What Is It?

Brain Metrix is a site that hosts different puzzle games. According to the site, these activities will help you train your brain to perform better. There are games for challenging memory, reflexes, creativity and concentration. The site also has some math-based puzzlels for computational fitness training.

brain metrix brain training games

All of the games and other materials on the site are free, and you don't need to register for an account or give any personal information to access activities. The site's design is very bare bones, without any frills. Navigation is a little difficult at times due to many blocks of text that are the same size, color and font. There aren't many images, buttons or frames to guide users along. The interface is similarly spartan. At times, I found games difficult to play, either because the instructions weren't detailed enough, or because games just didn't seem to work.

The games themselves vary. Some activities are arcade-style flash games with levels and sound effects, while others are very simple onscreen widgets. Some of these widgets allow the user to select a more difficult version of the puzzle, but ultimately, the objective is the same. For example, one game (pictured above) requires players to figure out how to move different sized discs from one place to another while following a few stipulations about how the puzzle can be solved. It's presented as a very simple widget in a very small section of the screen. Users can control how many discs there are to change the difficulty of the puzzle. Instructions are given on how to solve the activity, but not on how to use the widget.

What Are Its Pros and Cons?

There aren't a ton of puzzles available through Brain Metrix, but there is some variety. Personally, I found the games to be a little dry. There wasn't really enough visual interest or variety within each game to hold my interest for long. However, I think many users, particularly those who enjoy puzzles that have simple formats, but are nonetheless challenging (like Sudoku), will enjoy this site.

While I consider the site's design austerity to be a drawback, it is simple in other ways that are more positive. Using Brain Metrix is very low maintenance. You can come and go as you please, without having to worry about registering for an account, remembering a password or giving any personal information. Plus, it's free, so complaining too much about the design is like looking a gift horse in the mouth.

I don't think Brain Metrix measures up against the other brain training resources I reviewed for this series. The other resources have some scientific basis for their claims of effectiveness; Brain Metrix doesn't have that kind of support. It also lacks the personalization that's possible with the other programs. Still, because it's free, and because it lacks a program structure, I think Brain Metrix is a good alternative to other resources, particularly for those who just want to play some mentally challenging games.

This is the second in a series of reviews of online brain training resources. Previously, the Techie reviewed Lumosity. Stay tuned for more reviews from the Education Techie!

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