You use your phone to text your friends about meeting up for archery practice, take pictures of your bow and check in at the local archery range. And let’s not forget Snapchatting your fellow archers when you hit the bull’s-eye or get a Robin Hood! Even if you use your phone for everything from setting your alarm to setting reminders for important tasks, have you ever thought about using it to download apps that can improve your concentration and maybe even your archery score?
It’s safe to say that even the best archers in the world use games to improve their mental clarity. In an interview with The Korean Times, world champion Korean archer Kim Woo-jin said he enjoyed “fishing and [playing] the online game ‘League of Legend’ to improve his concentration.” Games seem like a way to take your mind off of grueling practice sessions while reinforcing certain qualities an archer needs to focus and relax all at once.
Here’s a look at some easy and fun ways to challenge your mind one app at a time.
This archery-inspired game is fairly simple. A player receives a set number of arrows to fire at a rotating target. If the player shoots all their arrows onto the spinning target without hitting another arrow already in the target, they win the level. That sounds easy enough, right? Not so fast!
After the first few levels, the spinning target becomes less distracting. But the mind game becomes more challenging as a player receives more arrows to shoot, and the target speeds up and alternates between clockwise and counterclockwise rotations.
Encouraging users to block out the game’s many variables – outlying arrows, target speed and target rotation – this game can hone your focus, patience, determination and self-discipline, skills that are essential to archery success and arrowing bull’s-eyes, both in the game and in real life. Plus it’s free!
Color Switch is currently ranked ninth of all free-to-play games in the app store. This hover-puzzle game has awesome controls that are easy to use. The colors promote relaxation while the lively music stimulates excitement. Plus you can unlock different cursor icons as you play. Instant play becoming too monotonous? Up the excitement with more challenging game modes!
The basic idea of the game is to get your cursor past all the obstacles. Moving the small cursor is easy; just tap the screen to make the cursor bounce. In the beginning, the cursor is one of four colors: purple, yellow, teal or pink. This game makes players focus on which color they can pass through while considering how the obstacles move.
Focusing on many small details at once is similar to archery. When you’re new to archery, it’s important to mentally think through each step of shooting a bow. This requires focusing on two things at once: sorting out your thoughts, and performing the task of shooting your bow. Similarly, this app helps you to focus on three things at once: controlling the cursor through bouncing, memorizing how the obstacles change, and forming a plan to get through them.
Temple Run: Brave
Merida is wielding a bow again, but this time she’s in everyone’s favorite Temple Run game. The basics of Temple Run are simple: Players use their finger and swipe to jump, duck below branches and turn Merida left or right on the path. While running from the bear, Mordu, Merida can also shoot at various targets along the path, which adds a layer of difficulty to the already-challenging Temple Run. When Merida hits the targets allotted for an area, the player is rewarded a bonus area with additional coins. The more targets you hit, the more coins you get, and the better chances you have at earning a score multiplier. In other words, more coins = a higher score and total archery domination!
We must admit that this game gets some special recognition because of its already-strong archery ties with the movie “Brave.” But it’s still so much fun! Although we got frustrated about not ducking a branch in time, there were many achievements to unlock that kept us working to better our score every time.
Archery always requires determination and focus! This app can easily make someone want to do one of two things: throw their phone across the room, or keep trying over and over again until they pass their next high score. Similar to archery, it teaches us to keep trying and be tenacious in our pursuit of success.
This game is similar to the board game Rush Hour, but it uses blocks instead of little cars. The object of the game is to slide the pieces around to allow the red block to get through. More blocks are added as the levels progress. In the relaxed mode, the number of moves doesn’t matter, and players can focus on just trying to get the red block across. Or, for a challenge, there’s a second mode that counts the number of movements and forces players to make smart decisions.
As with archery, there are some aspects of technicality that we have to learn. Unblock Me allows a person to think through many different scenarios and determine how to move the pieces to get across the goal line. How do you feel when you’re solving problems with your form or trying to arrow consistent bull’s-eyes? Just like a puzzle, many pieces must come together before you can arrow the middle. This app hones how your mind works to solve a puzzle, making it easier to block out distractions and focus on the center target ring.
Opening your mind to different ways of thinking can help on days when you find yourself having difficulty hitting the bull’s-eye. Staying calm and thinking through the problem can help!
Bowmasters is a fresh take on the basic 1v1 bowman, a game that involves firing an arrow at an opposing NPC archer that isn’t visible until you fire. Players can unlock different characters by using their own, unique “arrow flinging” style. Characters range from the basic Robin Hood to more creative spin-off characters such as Mario with a turtle shell, Thor with his hammer, a shark with a trident, and even “Breaking Bad’s” Walter White with a toxic potion. Players are told the distance between themselves and their computer opponent, and then must guess the angle degree of the shot they must take to hit the opponent. When your arrow hits your opponent, their health bar goes down. Getting the opponent’s health bar to zero wins the match, and each win gives the winner coins to unlock new characters.
How does this game apply to archery? Mainly the game makes you account for multiple factors so you can hit your target. For example, shooting outdoors presents distractions like wind and rain. Remembering how you aimed for that one arrow to hit the target at a specific distance with a certain amount of wind is helpful, and can help you determine how to improve on the next shot. So, this game can help fuel the part of your brain that helps with memory and critical thinking. Hurray for learning!
Have you tried any of these apps before, and do they seem pretty cool? You be the judge: Download some so you can have fun while training your brain for the real fun of shooting archery.