The Granddaddy of all puzzle games has just been pulled into the 21’st century.
Over the years there have been a few attempts to reinvent the Tetris formula with Puyo Puyo Tetris being the latest, and while sometimes it works, more often than not it’s the base Tetris experience that people find most enjoyable when playing.
Tetris Effect takes that core experience and doesn’t try to mess with it too much, other than add a massive dose of Lumines into the mix and, of course, allows you to play in VR. This game of Tetris is a journey of visual magic and amazing music that will at times relax and other times invigorate you as you are firmly transfixed into “The Zone”.
The main mode will take you on a journey through a series of levels that each have a different song and visual style as well as background effects, from deep in the sea to the heights of the moon, and as you play various particle effects will fly at you while you play in VR. Much like Lumines, when you move and rotate your blocks, you will add various beats and snare hits that go along with the music. Your actions drive the music itself so as you clear lines the songs will progress from intro to verse to chorus.
I have mentioned the background effects already and some of you are likely wondering if they are off-putting and possibly something that breaks your concentration, let me tell you now that they don’t. As with the music the effects really seem to keep you transfixed on what’s going on, and personally, I found that they helped me to focus. The effects are stunning and I really think this is a title I will now use to show people how impressive VR can be.
Along with the main mode there are plenty of other ways to play on offer, like the Sprint, Master and Effect modes which challenge how you play by adding status effects onto the blocks in the play area. There are even relaxing modes that allow you to play and soak in the visuals without the fear of a game over.
The soundtrack for Tetris Effect is fantastic, I enjoyed every song on every level that I played, and I’m really hoping that it’s something that becomes available to purchase as it is very enjoyable to listen to. The styles vary from upbeat dance music to more classical style music and like I mentioned before, every song is driven by your performance in the level.
I played the game in VR, and for me, it’s the only way to play. You can also play in non-VR, but the effort that has been put into the VR version is just amazing and it really feels like that is how the game was supposed to be played. I was so sucked into the game that I found myself playing for hours without taking a break, and at no point did my enjoyment dip. People may be surprised to read this, but, I can honestly say it’s one of my favourite uses of VR.
I had no issues whatsoever with Tetris Effect, it sucked me in and left me mesmerised. If that’s the Effect the developer was after then it certainly succeeded.
*Code kindly provided by the publisher for review*