How to play the Capacity, Level 1 Game
i9’s IQ prime builds on an evidence-based working memory training game called the n-back.
This game is called capacity because it expands working memory capacity.
There are two types of n-back challenge in this game – visual and audio challenges.
.Visual Mode – Single N-Back
In the Visual game (shown in the top icon) you’ll see a game window like this. Periodically a square will move to one of 8 locations in the game frame. Here the square is bottom left.
The training starts at n–back = 1. In this task you have to press the ‘F’ key (with your left hand) when the spatial location of the square is the same as the location 1 move earlier. This is a memory gap of 1 – a 1-back. When you get proficient at this, you will progress to an n-back = 2 game. In the example of a 2-back shown in the figure below, there are 2 matches in 6 square moves. If you correctly press the key when there is a match you get points, if you miss the match or if you press the ‘F’ key when there is no match, you lose points.
To start each new block, you do not need to press the arrow button – you can simply press the space bar. You can pause the game at any time by clicking the ‘clock’ button. Just click it again to continue. You can cancel the block at any time by clicking the ‘trash’ button.
Going up n-back levels
The rules for going up or down n-back levels are as follows:
- If you got 90% or more in the game, the memory gap for the next block increases one n-back level.
- If you do less well, the gap decreases one n-back level for the next game.
- Otherwise the n-back level stays the same.
In Custom Games, you can in principle increase your n-back level all the way to a 6-back, 7-back or even higher, as your working memory training for spatial information takes effect.
Because the difficulty level of the training task always adapts to your current performance level, the brain training always remains challenging to you: it is never too easy, nor too difficult to become frustrating and demotivating. This is what is known as ‘adaptive training‘, and it is critical for real working memory and IQ gains. In the default game, once you reach a certain level of n-back proficiency, you unlock the next game.
Once you have completed 10 blocks in practice mode two windows open – a graph giving your average n-back performance. In the graph, if you click on the ‘percent correct’ button, a ‘percentage correct’ graph opens.
Press the forward arrow button to continue.
Audio Mode – Single N-Back
The Audio game is exactly the same as the Visual Mode game, but instead of spatial information (moving squares), you are training with audio information (e.g. spoken letters). Using the ‘L’ key (right hand) for an ‘n-back’ letter match, you are doing exactly the same thing – starting with an n-back of 1. If you are proficient at N=1, you progress to N=2. In the following 2-back example, there are 2 letter matches where you need to press the ‘L’ key. One match is for the letter ‘P’, the other match is for the letter ‘O’.
… ‘P’ ‘X’ ‘P’ ‘O’ ‘C’ ‘O’ …
Your goal is always to increase your n-back level (a measure of your working memory capacity) and your total IQ Prime score shown in the top of the game frame. Your IQ Prime game score is calculated based on both your n-back level and the difficulty rating of the training options you select in the Options Panel.
When you reach a level of competence in this game (based on your proficiency setting in the Games Panel) you will unlock the next game.