If you’ve been searching for a video game that will make you a little smarter, it may be time to throw out Brain Age and start thinking with portals.
According to the initial results of a study conducted at Florida State University, playing Portal 2 is much better for warming up your cognitive skills than “brain training” software, such as those offered by companies like Lumosity.
The study was conducted over only an eight hour period, so it’s hardly definitive, but the results were pretty interesting.
Researcher Valerie Shute and her colleagues split the test subjects into two groups. One group used Lumosity‘s brain training software for eight hours; the other group played eight hours of Portal 2.
After these playing sessions were over, each group were tasked with a series of standard cognitive skill tests. The Portal 2 group, having just matched wits with GLaDOS herself, came out on top over the Lumosity group in every single test.
Obviously this isn’t the final word on the issue, as Neuroplasticity itself (the concept that the adult brain can continue to grow and develop with the right training), is a controversial idea.
Still, if you’re planning on opening up a Lumosity subscription, maybe it’s worth considering picking up a copy of Portal 2 instead. It’d be cheaper, and maybe even better for your brain.
If you’re curious to know more, you can read Shute’s full study at Science Direct.