A new study conducted by East Carolina University shows that playing Bejeweled may just make you smarter.
Researchers monitored the brainwaves of 40 participants as they played Bejeweled and Peggle. Subjects who played 30 minutes of Bejeweled showed an 87 percent improvement in their cognitive response and a 215 percent improvement in executive functioning. I don't know what either of those mean, but they sure do sound fancy and vaguely brain-related, so let's just put it simply: PopCap makes games that make your brain do gooder.
"The initial results of the study are very intriguing, in that they suggest that the 'active participation' required while playing a casual videogame like Bejeweled provides an opportunity for mental exercise that more passive activities, like watching television, do not," said Dr. Carmen Russoniello, Director of the Psychophysiology Lab and Biofeedback Clinic at ECU. "Future applications could include prescriptive applications using casual videogames to potentially stave off Alzheimer's disease and other dementia-type disorders."
Earlier this year in April, researchers at Cambridge announced that brain training games absolutely do not make people smarter. Comparatively, it seems that the Cambridge study may be more robust. The Cambridge study compared 11,000 people over a period of six weeks; those who played games, and those who just browsed the internet. The researchers did not find any comparable difference between the two groups in brain improvement.
Granted, this study is just in its preliminary stages and the control and test groups will likely expand, but it still may be too early to declare a decisive win in favor of videogames.
Still ... take that, Cambridge.
Source: Industry Gamers