Flex your gray matter

Who says video games don't teach you anything? International Brain Awareness Week kicks off on March 13th and can you believe there's a handheld game embracing the festivities?

Already a major success in Japan, Nintendo's Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day is headed for the Nintendo DS on April 17th. The game's nothing more than a package of noggin-shredding minigames that whip your brain into shape. Yes, it's a cleverly disguised way to actually ... learn while playing "them damn video games." Dr. Elizabeth Zelinski, dean and executive director of University of Southern California's Leonard Davis School of Gerontology, says the software is as much a tool as it is a game.

"Americans can do a great deal to maintain and even improve their mental abilities," Zelinski said in a Nintendo press release. "Aging is about taking on new challenges for our minds. Nintendo's Brain Age is a great way to do that."

Untraditional games have become a mainstay on the DS, from the cross-examining litigation of Phoenix Wright to the life-saving, touch-screeny healthiness of Trauma Center: Under the Knife. Expect to see more unusual titles this year as the handheld continues to grab more non-gamers' eyes.

Check out our preview for Brain Age.