Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain Review

Wednesday, December 1st, 2021 6:00 am

Play brain training mini-games on your own and against friends and family.

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain will be released on Nintendo Switch on December 3, 2021.

We had the chance to play the game before it’s released.

What’s Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain?

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain is the latest title in the Big Brain Academy franchise, which began with the original Big Brain Academy on Nintendo DS in 2006 in North America. The game allows up to four players to compete against one another in a variety of brain training activities. Plus, a single player can practice the game’s activities on their own as often as they want.

How do you play this game?

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain allows players to complete 20 mini-game activities that are split into five categories: Identify, Memorize, Analyze, Compute, and Visualize.

While we won’t describe every mini-game in detail, here are just a few examples of what these activities ask players to do.

The “Identify” mini-game “Fast Focus” asks players to identify an animal species as portions of the animal’s picture randomly appear on the screen.

The “Analyze” mini-game “Heavyweight” shows players objects on balance scales and challenges them to identify the heaviest object on the screen.

The Compute mini-game “Balloon Burst” asks players to pop numbered balloons in order from the smallest number to the largest.

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain features a number of difficulty levels to choose from, which greatly change the difficulty of each mini-game. For instance, if players choose a higher difficulty for the Balloon Burst game, the balloons will start to feature negative numbers as well as positive ones.

When playing one of these mini-games in the game’s single-player Practice Mode, players are given 60 seconds to earn as many points as possible by answering questions correctly. At the beginning of the 60-second game, players start on the “Sprout” difficulty level, which is the easiest one. As they answer questions correctly, the difficulty will automatically progress to harder levels until time runs out.

At the end of these single-player practice games, players receive a medal based on their final score, and they’ll also earn one or more coins. Each time players collect 10 coins, they’ll be able to open a random present box containing an accessory or outfit item for their in-game character.

Source: Nintendo

Solo players can also test their skills in the game’s “Test” mode, which challenges them to complete five randomly selected activities in order to earn an overall “Brain Grade” and “Big Brain Brawn” score.

Finally, single players can compete against the “play data” of other people in the game’s “Ghost Clash” mode. Specifically, Ghost Clash mode allows players to play against the play data of friends and family, as well as strangers from around the world. When players first begin Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain, they’re asked to enter their age and occupation, and this information will be shown to other players in the Ghost Clash mode, though players can hide their age if they’d like.

In addition to these single-player game modes, Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain features a multiplayer Party Mode for two to four players who will all play the game on the same screen. When playing in Party Mode, players can spin a wheel to receive random mini-games to complete, or they can choose which game to play for each round.

When playing a mini-game in the game’s Party Mode, players earn points based on how quickly they answer each question correctly, and the first player to reach 100 points wins the current game.

Source: Nintendo

Is this game fun to play?

There’s a wide variety of mini-games to try in Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain, and players will likely find some to be more challenging (and “fun”) than others, based on their individual skill sets and whether they enjoy topics and concepts like math, memorization, and so on.

When playing in the game’s Party Mode, each player can choose their own difficulty level for each activity, which will help players with different skill levels (or of different age groups) compete on a more even playing field. For instance, if someone knows they may struggle on math-related questions, they can play on a lower difficulty setting, while someone who excels in math may want to bump up the difficulty.

The game also includes a “Sprout Support” option that “prevents questions from getting too hard and is recommended for young children.”

All of that being said, even though the game offers the endless Ghost Clash mode for single players, there’s not a ton of content here to keep a solo player coming back day after day, and the game is better as a party game experience.

Source: Nintendo

Is there anything else parents need to know about this game?

While Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain includes difficulty options for younger players, the game isn’t meant for very young players. It doesn’t feature voice acting, so players will need to know how to read in order to understand the instructions for each activity or play alongside someone who can help them out. Plus, some of the games use text prompts and/or text answers, rather than image-based answers, which would also require players to know how to read.

What’s the final verdict?

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain offers a fun set of mini-game activities for players to try, whether they’re playing on their own or in a group. However, solo players may find that the game’s novelty wears off quickly if they don’t have anyone else to play with in the real world.

If your family enjoys playing competitive games and/or you enjoy hosting game nights, we recommend adding Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain to your family’s Switch lineup. However, if you think only a single person in the family would play this game, we recommend trying the game’s free demo before making a purchase to ensure it’s a game they’ll enjoy. You can download the game’s free demo from the Nintendo eShop.

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain will be released on Switch on December 3 for $29.99. The game is rated E for Everyone by the ESRB.

Disclosure: SuperParent received Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain for coverage purposes.

Brandy Berthelson

Brandy Berthelson has been writing about video games and technology since 2006, with her work appearing on sites including AOL Games, Digital Spy, and Adweek. When she’s not gaming, Brandy enjoys crafting, baking, and traveling with her husband.

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