It has long been known that using and challenging your brain helps it to develop and become stronger. This is why strategy games, whether board games, table games and more recently, computer games have always been a popular past-time for men and women across the world.
Pitting your wits against another person forces you to use strategy and foresee what strategy your opponents might be using. The brain becomes engaged and the more you play, the better it becomes and giving you ideas and solutions on the situations the games put you in.
Take a look at some of the more classic strategy games that can be great for your brain:
Despite being a very old game that looks very simple, Chess is still the master of all strategy games. With just 64 squares on a board and 16 chess pieces for each player, the aim is to take outplay your opponent, taking his chess pieces and ultimately trapping his ‘king’ in such a way that he cannot move anywhere without being killed. Known as ‘checkmate’, it takes a lot of skill to know which chess pieces to move as you go up against your opponent who is trying to do the same thing to you.
Each piece on the board will have its own rules to how far and which direction it can be moved in, which just adds to the overall strategy that is required. Such is the popularity of the game which dates back centuries; tournaments and world championships are regularly contested every year across the globe.
From something as old as chess to something created nearly 40 years ago, Civilization is a game which was originally a board game that is now played online. A complex game that takes a lot of skill and strategy to succeed, players are tasked with guiding a civilization from a given era and taking them through the many hardships they face. The ultimate goal is to lead your civilization into prosperity.
Civilization can be played by up to seven players at a time and each game can last for around 10 hours. First hitting computer screens back in 1991, the game has since evolved through the decades and can now be played online with people from all over the world. Whether you have to help a civilization through World War 1, or even help civilizations on another planet, this game is one of the most addictive yet complex games around.
3.) Connect Four
Connect Four is a board game that looks very simple but is actually quite difficult when playing against a good player. Being a board game that was first created back in the 1970’s, Connect Four has survived the generations and is still very popular today. Playing the game involves each player taking turns to drop their colored tiles into one of seven columns. The goal is to be the first player that achieves a line of four vertically, horizontally or diagonally.
Connect Four could be classed as a larger variation of Tic-Tac-Toe and it certainly plays in much the same way. A favorite with children and adults alike, Connect Four is certainly a game that will get you thinking and therefore benefit your brain.
Despite the board having a very similar look to that of a chess board, the two games are actually very different from each other. Main differences include players only being able to move their pieces diagonally and ‘capturing’ opponent’s pieces by jumping over them. Each game carries on until one player manages to capture all of their opponent’s pieces.
Dating back hundreds of years, Checkers had its first World Championships back in 1940 and is still competed across other championships across the world today. Additionally, there are many different variations of the game and how it is played, in many countries all around the world.
Known as the Japanese version of chess, Shogi is another table strategy game that can be very effective at improving your brain. Generally, the boards will be split into nine fields but as the game has evolved, boards of varying sizes can be used. While the game is very similar to chess in many ways, it does have some big differences such as players can use the pieces of their opponents if they capture them and then promote them to the board.
Dating back to the same period as chess, Shogi is a game that can last for many hours and requires immense strategy skills. Rules are very strict as well, such as if a player makes an illegal move by mistake, rather than being given a chance to correct and make a proper move, they instead lose the game immediately.
Topping our list is a computer game that is very well known over in Asia, StarCraft, a game that has almost become a national past time in countries like South Korea. The logistics of the game itself can be seen in many strategy computer games of today but this was one of the first to really become a huge hit. The idea is that players build up a base, collect resources and train new soldiers and units that they can use to battle their opponents with.
Due to its huge popularity in some quarters of the planet, the game which was originally created in 1998 has regular tournaments being played by professional players that can win large sums of money if they come out on top. People even go to be a spectator at the games in much the same way as they do at sports.
Strategy games will always be a popular thing for people to do, whether you’re a Suduko fan or somebody that loves nothing more than playing Clash of Clans on their mobile phone. We love challenging our mental capacities and feeling the euphoria when we manage to outsmart our opponents – it’s human nature after all.