The right game for the right time, part 7: Puzzle games

In May of this year I started a series of articles called “The Right game for the right time”,

Let’s assume that you are sitting on your couch, bored with the shows on the television and that you have the entire evening ahead of you with nothing much to do. Now, if you’re a working mom, a dad with a demanding job or a student bent over your books for the next exam, the chances of this being the case are slim. But, just for the sake of this blog, picture yourself in that situation. And you’re thinking that you’d love to play a good game, but you have no idea what game to pick.

Just for those situations I decided to come up with a sort of game-chooser. Not like the ones you’d find on official gaming sites, but just my idea of good games that are waiting to be played at the right time and at the right moment.

Since then, the first four gaming categories have been covered:

So let’s assume you are sitting on your couch again, bored and looking for a nice game. Time for the next category: Puzzle games.

A couple of games come to mind immediately: who can forget the first games that made us see that a DS can be used as holding it as a sort of book too? Big Brain Academy and Dr. Kawashima’s Brain Training were the first games for the DS when the system was first released and they shook the casual gaming world. Where the GameBoy was the domain of children and teen boys, now we saw that the DS could be a system for adults too. Remember all the tv commercials showing us stars from the big screen, sitting cozily on their couch and playing their DS? That’s how women saw that gaming wasn’t necessarily a pastime for geeks and nerds, but that it could be a nice hobby for them too. And not only was it fun to do, but at the same time you could train your brain! Since then there have been newer versions for the 3DS. Plus a lots of games have been released that cover a part of what the brain training games were about. Sudoku games, Tetris and Picross games. All aiming to entertain you and train your brain at the same time.

layton, luke, puzzle, azran legacy, ladiesgamers, gaming choicesAnother game series that is responsible for bringing a lot of adults to the DS and 3DS is Professor Layton. Level 5’s hit series about a very English professor with top hat and the bearing of a gentleman, aided by Luke, a fresh faced polite kid. I’m reminded that I have never yet wrote anything on here about Layton, although the first game was really an eye opener for me. Who could have thought a puzzle game would bring so much to the table? Beautiful graphics, a great storyline, likeable characters and that wistful music. Instantly recognizable. The first one was Professor Layton and the Curious Village, the last game to date was Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy. The puzzles in the game range from a little easy to really tough, and the games all have some little mini games to the side too. Like collecting ingredients to make different kinds of tea or moving a toy robot through several stages to reach the finish. I love the games for their stories, sometimes to the extent that I don’t want to do the puzzles. But either way, I highly recommend them.

pushmo, puzzle, ladiesgamers, gaming choicesOut of the huge amount of puzzle games available I’d like to name one more series that I’ve enjoyed very much. I’m talking about Pushmo, Crashmo and Stretchmo (all available in the eShop on the 3DS) and Pushmo World on the WiiU. These games have different names in Europe, where they are called Pullblox, Fallblox and Fullblox, should you go looking for them. In these games you have to shift around puzzle blocks in order to create steps and platforms, ultimately to reach children who have been trapped within the giant structures. The storyline is almost non-existent and not important, what is important is to push and shove as long as needed to finally be able to solve the puzzle.It’s a colorful and simplistic world that is presented but the gameplay is really entertaining.

I’ve only mentioned games on here on the DS or 3DS, but I could go on listing puzzle games. Android and iOS apps are very much suited for puzzle games. I know my husband immensely enjoys his Spider Solitair and Mahjongg, as well as games like the Cradle of Rome. So I think we can safely say that should you want to train your brain, enough food for thought is to be had!

  1. I like the way you approached this. I don’t play many video games because I’m insanely susceptible to motions sickness and odd visual stimuli is a Migraine trigger, but I used to love them when they weren’t so immersive.

    1. See, I’m slowly converting you, Gina! I promise you that ones you’ve got the basics down and throw them randomly into a conversation with you family, you’ll gain lots of respect! Thanks for reading!

              1. Well, I was wondering if I could make an interview and discuss gaming things with you, where you look at it from a non-gamers point of view. As a gamer, to me it’s totally normal for me, has been for years. Sometimes one tends to forget that other people might find it a waste of time, or don’t have the time to spare, or maybe think it’s a toy that is not for adults. It might be fun to make an article where we both light our side. What do you think?

              2. Interesting idea! I think it’s worth a try…For sure I’m on the other
                side!! For starters…As you use the word “gamer” it’s positive; As I am used to using the word “gamer” it’s
                negative. To me a “gamer” is someone who takes advantage of another person through manipulative means. How does that sound?

              3. Oh nice! I would have thought you’d seen gamer as a adolescence boy wasting his time playing games. I hadn’t thought of your description. See, I think we could have a nice mutual article!

              4. Yvonne is my real life name. Shall we communicate through email? Mine is I’m a bit tied up tomorrow (it’s 10 pm here now) but I have time to cook something up tomorrow. It’ll be so nice to get to know each other better too!

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