Brain Training For Nintendo Switch (NSW)

Brain Training for Nintendo Switch
脳を鍛える大人のNintendo Switchトレーニング_
©2019 Nintendo

Nintendo Switch (NSW)


Nintendo Entertainment Planning & Development Division (EPD) - Production Group No.4


Additional Work:

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The Brain Training games, known as Brain Age in North America, are presented as a set of mini-games that are designed to help improve one's mental processes. These activities were informed by Dr. Ryuta Kawashima, a Japanese neuroscientist, and are aimed to stimulate multiple parts of the brain as to help improve one's abilities and combat normal aging affects on the brain. Activities are generally based on two or more mental stimulii and to be completed as fast and as correctly as possible. For example, common activities include Calculations, where the user is presented with a list of single-operator math operations and the user uses the system's touch screen to write their answer to each question, and Stroop Test based on the Stroop effect, where players must say into the unit's microphone the color of the text of a color name that appears on screen. Activities are usually presented in both a Training mode, which allows the user to practice to get the hang of how the activities are played out, and a Brain Age Check, where the user completes multiple activities outside of practice, with the game estimating the person's "brain age" based on how quickly they completed all the tests and accounting for any incorrect answers. The game tracks a user's performance over time to help show the effects of daily interactions with the game.

Nintendo was looking for something new to develop that would appeal to both traditional and casual gamers. In one of the meetings, the Chief Financial Officer of Nintendo's Japanese division suggested reviewing a published book titled Train Your Brain: 60 Days to a Better Brain, which was enjoying a great deal of success in Japan. Satoru Iwata, the president of Nintendo, arranged for a meeting with Professor Ryuta Kawashima, the author of the book. As both Iwata and Professor Kawashima were too busy to meet under normal circumstances, they both agreed to meet for an hour during the Nintendo DS launch. The original meeting became a brainstorming session that lasted for three hours, in which Professor Kawashima explained the basics of his studies. Iwata assigned a team of nine developers to develop the game and to have it ready in 90 days for demonstration. The Nintendo Switch version was developed by most of the original team, lead by the original director and now producer - Kouichi Kawamoto, with additional development from Indies Zero.

Critically the game received mixed reviews, with several concerns over the quality and long-term appeal of the product.

Interview Excerpts:

Production Staff:

Kouichi Kawamoto, Takayuki Shimamura

Kenta Kubo

Staff (Nintendo Co., Ltd.)
Soshi Abe, Yosuke Fujino, Shuntaro Furukawa, Minako Hamano, Kunihiro Hasuoka, Yukihiko Hayashi, Masaki Horii, Haruka Kakinuma, Noriko Kitamura, Yoshiaki Koizumi, Junji Morii, Sota Omiya, Yuichi Ozaki, Kazuki Tsukuda, Hitoshi Yamazaki, Masami Yone

Staff (Indies Zero Co., Ltd.)
Masaru Arai, Shinya Ebihara, Keiji Hara, Yuichi Igarashi, Mari Jinbo, Taeko Kuroda, Jun Maruyama, Giichiro Matsumoto, Masahito Muta, Yasuhiro Nakamura, Tsukasa Okayasu, Masanobu Suzui, Nobuaki Tanaka, Yasuhito Wakabayashi, Hirotaka Watanabe, Yuuki Yamada, Masahiro Yanaka, Katsunori Yazawa

Special Thanks
Shinya Fujiwara, Hiroki Hamaue, Yasuyuki Ikeda, Takeshi Kawasaki, Yoshiyuki Makino, Yoshifumi Masaki, Takafumi Masaoka, Takumi Masuda, Daiki Moriyama, Kazuyoshi Ohsawa, Shinji Okane, Shuhei Oshita, Yuichi Shimoda, Koji Sonoyama, Rika Sugo, Ryo Tanaka, Akitoshi Taniguchi, Tomoaki Toyama, Masaki Wada, Takeshi Wakasugi, Kenji Yamamoto, Shinya Yano, Yoshito Yasuda, Yuta Yoshimoto

DIGITAL HEARTS Co., LTd., Finger Recognition Development Team, Mario Club Co., Ltd., Nintendo European Research & Development SAS, NintendoWare Bezel Engine Development Team, SRD Co., Ltd.

Ryuta Kawashima

General Producer
Shinya Takahashi

Executive Producer
Shuntaro Furukawa

Version: Nintendo Switch (WW)
Source: Game Credits. Nintendo JP.
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