April 3rd, 2012 | By Emerson Smith
Total Eclipse Games’ iPhone entry, A Clockwork Brain – Insanely Fun Mind Training Puzzles, is a game that lives up to its title. With a slick interface and design, you will be racing against the clock in puzzles designed to train your eyes and your brain.
The visuals of A Clockwork Brain are bright and lively. The steam punk aesthetic pulls together all the different pieces that make up the whole : visually and musically. The sound effects blend so well with the atmosphere, you won’t even notice them. During the Chase The Numbers minigame, my favorite mode, the
sound of the wooden tiles flipping back and forth flowed naturally through the rest of the game. As you play, certain sounds will also chime to announce your successes and your failures. Fortunately, the best thing Clockwork Brain will teach you is that there is always a second chance. Failure is never the end, progress is the only destination.
Clockwork Brain is focused on minigames. These short, rapid tests of vision and speed are always carefully balanced. The game monitors your progress and
constantly adjusts the game to keep you pushing your limits. This is what makes a game addictive: when you can put time and energy into something, and have it constantly give you positive feedback and maintain a challenge, you know that the developers have struck gold.
The main formula is the Challenge Mode, where the game will select four challenges. Each challenge lasts for sixty seconds, and the answer is always a button press away. When you download the plain app, you are given four free challenges, and you can purchase additional two-packs of challenges for $0.99. The free challenges include Anagrams, where you look at a word and select the bubble with the same letters in a different order, Missing Tiles, in which you count the number of tiles missing in the picture and select the number, Chase The Numbers, where you look at a set of number tiles and then press them in order after they have flipped over, and finally Scrolling Silhouettes, where you try to match a silhouette you are given with the scrolling pieces on-screen.
After each challenge, you are awarded with points you can use to buy in the Free section of the upgrades store. Even if you do not want to pay for additional minigames, you can spend these points to unlock the Single Game Mode, Item Packs to add variation to the already expansive object list for the game, a wallpaper, and a single bonus minigame. There are plenty of long-term and short-term goals to fulfill while playing Clockwork Brain.
A Clockwork Brain succeeds at creating a fun, challenging atmosphere, where success is the only possible end. Few games succeed at making a formula that is always varied, challenging, and rewarding. And, it’s free, so what are you waiting for?