True Color

App review by
Amanda Bindel, Common Sense Media
True Color App Poster Image
Cool brain game based on fascinating neuroscience effect.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn to focus, tuning out distractions and focusing on one specific thing, through training with True Color. It's not educational per se, and the benefits of repeated play are debatable. However, testing their brains to see the neuroscience of the Stroop effect could open up conversations about science, experiments, and observation. Either way, the challenge is pretty fun, if occasionally frustrating, and kids may improve their ability to focus using True Color.

Ease of Play

Although the game itself is quite challenging, play is straightforward and intuitive.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that True Color is a very challenging neuroscience-based brain game that's made up of four challenges. It's based on the Stroop effect, the phenomenon of how the brain interprets the dissonance between the written word for a color and the actual color. Confused yet? This mind bender is appropriate for any age, so long as users can read well; though it seems simple, it's certainly challenging for all ages. Players can connect to Google+ or other social media and are asked after high-scoring rounds to share their scores with friends.

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What's it about?

There are four ways to play TRUE COLOR. The Classic game has players determine whether the written name for the color shown is correct or not before time runs out. In Chrono, you'll identify as many correct color and word combinations as you can before time runs out. Find the True Color features eight colored circles on the bottom of the screen; players must tap the color that matches the word, not the color, shown at the top of the screen. In Tap the True Color, players see four circles of different colors, each with the color word in them. You must tap the circle where the word and color match. 

Is it any good?

The benefits of brain-training games are unclear. Nonetheless, the challenge is fun, and kids may see an improvement in their ability to tune out distractions and focus on one specific task after some training with True Color. Kids will be surprised at how difficult such a simple request can be, which opens doors to talking about perception and how the brain works. Kids also have the option of playing in colorblind mode and choosing from nine languages, which adds an extra layer of challenge, but beyond that, there's not a huge amount of variety.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Family members can take their turn at True Color and talk about how challenging it was, exploring the brain science involved. Kids will get a kick out of seeing their parents stumped.

  • Kids and parents both might enjoy exploring the other languages included for another level of challenge. 

App details

  • Devices: Android, Windows Phone
  • Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: logic, thinking critically
  • Price: Free
  • Pricing structure: Free to try, Free (An in-app purchase of $1.29 is required to unlock the other languages and an in-app purchase of $1.49 removes the ads.)
  • Release date: August 14, 2014
  • Category: Puzzle Games
  • Topics: High School
  • Size: 2.20 MB
  • Publisher: Aurélien Hubert
  • Version: 2.0.3
  • Minimum software requirements: Android 4.0.3 and up

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