The story of Tetris has been told many times. It was created by Alexey Pajitnov in 1984 and had a complicated journey to the Game Boy. I’ve read a few books about it, read the story in other books, and watched plenty of videos about Tetris.
Tetris is a spin on the puzzle game Pentomino. Pajitnov simplified the number of blocks and made some adjustments while making Tetris.
There are some examples of Pajitnov making changes to get to Tetris eventually. These include having the pieces fall, having completed lines removed, and the speed increasing as the game goes on.
This isn’t the version of Tetris I grew up with. I played it on the NES. The Game Boy version is excellent and helped to make the handheld popular.
TLDR: Tetris is a classic game and helped to popularize puzzle games.
There is a lot of history with Tetris. I’m not going to go too in-depth here. It was created in 1984, and the rights were bought from the Soviet Government. There is a bit more to it, but it is better covered elsewhere.
Nintendo was able to get the home console and handheld rights to Tetris. This helped them get back at Atari and made Tetris a launch title for the Game Boy.
Tetris on the Game Boy was released in 1989 in North America and Japan. The Pal version came in 1990. In 1998 a Game Boy Color version was released as Tetris DX.
Tetris was also released on everything! It was similar to other popular games of the 80s. There was also an arcade version of the game. I have no idea why you want to play it in an arcade. This is just my taste in arcade games, though. I would rather play a Beat-em-up instead of a puzzle game.
The Tetris franchise is still going strong today. My favorite has been the Puyo Puyo Tetris games of the recent games. I find those two series to be a lot of fun!
The gameplay in Tetris is simple. It helps to make the game accessible to players of any skill level. You are trying to get the highest score possible and last as long as possible.
You get points by creating horizontal lines with the blocks that fall from the top of the screen. When you complete a line, it will disappear. To get the most points, you want to try to get four lines at once.
This type of gameplay would be repeated in many other puzzle games! I don’t think Tetris came up with it, but it did a lot to popularize this gameplay. It is very hard to tell with was a copy and what was a simultaneous invention when you’re talking about something like this.
As you get further into the game, the blocks will fall faster. This is where things get interesting. For me, things get a little rough by level nine. I’m just not good enough to get past this part anymore.
The playfield is ten blocks wide and eighteen blocks high. I’m not sure if that is necessary to know, but someone might find it interesting.
I wasn’t able to try out the two-player mode. I also didn’t check out the Super Game Boy. I don’t think it would have done anything to change my mind on the game.
There isn’t too much to say here. It is a nice-looking game. The color of the blocks and their shapes stand out, so you won’t get confused.
Because of the limitations of the Game Boy, there isn’t much difference between the different levels. You can tell that you have passed one level by the game’s speed or by seeing the level counter switch over.
It would have been nice to have a more noticeable visual que. I found myself not paying attention to anything but the game. This isn’t really a problem; I just thought it should be mentioned.
What I think makes this game fun is that it makes you want to try again. You want to keep trying to get further in the game. This is one of the game’s strengths.
You can make the game as challenging as you want. You’re competing for either a high score or to see how long you can last. I like this in puzzle games because you can pick them up and play for as long as you want.
There are a lot of puzzle games out there that were inspired by Tetris or just happened to be developed at the same time. Here are a few that I think are as good as Tetris.
- Dr. Mario
- Puyo Puyo
- Tetris Blast
- Tetris Plus
- Tetris Advance
- Kirby’s Star Stacker
- Pipe Dream
9/10 It still holds up, and it is one of my favorite puzzle games.
- It’s a challenging game that makes you want to keep playing
- The music is nice
- The difficulty ramps up slowly so you can get into the game easily
- You can adjust the speed to give you more challenge
These are mostly nitpicking. I don’t have too much to criticize with this version.
- You need the link cable to play multiplayer
- There is no story
- Not enough game modes
I feel like I need to say that I don’t think these are big problems. The game is excellent, and for a handheld version, it is a lot of fun! I think it’s as good if not better than the licensed Tetris on the NES. The Tengen version is better on the NES.
While I like the game, I think its story is much better. There are also other versions of Tetris that I like more than the Game Boy version.
Coming back to this game after several years has been fun. I like rediscovering games that I might have forgotten about or haven’t played in a while. It’s part of the reason why I wanted to do this.
Because of its role as a launch title for the Game Boy, Tetris is one of the more memorable games. It has a lot of spin-offs and has created a long-lasting franchise. I don’t think Tetris is going anywhere.