Free games are always a great way to pass your time or reward yourself after an exam or assignment submission. They offer the perfect balance between fun and exciting, all without you having to spend a single cent.
The best part? The enjoyment you gain out of gaming isn’t completely mindless — studies show that doing so can actually help make you smarter. In fact, gaming can increase your brain’s grey matter and teach you how to be a better problem solver, among other benefits.
This makes it an ideal activity to unwind — and keep learning at the same time. It’s a great way to keep your mind in shape as a student and learner, and can ultimately help improve your academic performance along the way.
Here are six of the best free games that will boost your brain activity, keeping you fresh and occupied without sacrificing an ounce of fun or excitement.
Here are the best brain-boosting games for students. Source: Josep Lago/AFP
Lumosity is one of the most popular apps specifically designed to give you a mental workout. As the leading app in this field, it’s got more than 50 brain games that challenge your brain in various ways. This includes helping you enhance your memory, speed, logic, problem-solving abilities, maths, language, and more.
The app isn’t completely free — you’re only limited to three games per day. Still, you can track your scores and see your improvement over time as a free user, as well as compare your performance against other people’s.
With over 35 (and counting) brain training games, you’ll never be at a loss of what to play with Elevate. Designed with an educational feel, you can find many engaging games to help you improve your reading, writing, speaking and maths abilities. The best part? You can customise your training according to whichever aspect you’d like to focus on.
The app is free to download for iOS and Android users, with certain in-app purchases.
The best free games are ones you can take on the go — and Peak is another that gives you the chance to do exactly that. With this app, you can access a range of brain games that will help you improve your focus, memory, problem-solving, mental agility, and other cognitive functions necessary to keep in top shape as a student.
The app is free to use and download for iOS and Android users, but similarly has in-app purchases that will allow you more advanced features.
Many of these games can be downloaded on your smartphone, making them easy to play on the go. Source: Daniel Leal/AFP
Braingle claims to have the world’s largest collection of brain teasers — and for good reason. Its website hosts more than 15,000 puzzles, games and other brain teasers in the form of optical illusions, codes and ciphers, and trivia quizzes.
What sets Braingle apart is its wide and enthusiastic online community, many of whom engage with each other regularly. This way, you can arrange to play one of its many games all whilst getting to know — and learning from — like-minded gamers all over the world.
Similar to Lumosity, Happy Neuron is a platform that personalises its brain training activities according to your capabilities and interests. Here, games and activities are divided into five critical brain areas: memory, attention, language, executive functions, and visual/spatial.
The site isn’t completely free. You’ll have to pay a monthly subscription to use but there is a free trial.
Queendom differentiates itself from the rest of the apps and websites on this list by offering personality tests and surveys in place of traditional games. Outside of this, it has a collection of “brain tools” such as logic, verbal, spatial and maths puzzles; trivia quizzes; aptitude tests; and more.
These are designed to help you exercise and test your brain. Once completed, you can save your results and scores by creating a free account. However, you may have to pay a fee to access your full results.