Tetris’ current incarnation gets all right. He reinvents the packaging instead of attempting to redesign the game and turns the most polished gameplay environment into a journey that you would not want to stop.
Gaming has had a lot of popularity, but just a few real symbols, which almost every person in the world recognizes, have succeeded in making a strong, instant and unforgettable image. The immediate suspect is Mario, but Tetris – the Soviet hit of the 80s that managed to transcend decades, industries and genders – is the true working-class hero of gaming.
14:17 GMT, Sunday, November 29, 2020
Tetris is a basic game, and how a real novelty can be generated in it is difficult to imagine. And yet the latest title in the series, Tetris Effect: Linked, purports to do much more than that.
The game, which takes the timeless franchise to the modern console age, begins with a pretentious statement: “Embark on a journey from the far corners of the galaxy to the depths of your soul.” How does one read such an expression without laughing? From the soul’s depths? Let’s just rest a bit, Tetris all. But still with all his impudence, Tetris Impact dares to totally stand up to this inflated assertion and even manages to top it.
There are not a lot of innovations in the gameplay itself, and that’s a positive thing. In the history of games, the makers of Tetris Influence have come to realize that they have the best symbol. Sure, brands such as Mario and DOOM have influenced whole gaming styles, but at least both of these games sought to rewrite the format or alter it subtly so that nothing but originality could be asserted.
Tetris is and always will be, Tetris. The bricks will always be the square, the stick, the two that look like the keys of Allen, the one that looks like the junction of T, and the two that look irritating. The mere fact that you know exactly who the “annoying two” are confirms the case. The bricks will always come off the whole line will always vanish, the pace will always go up everywhere at high speeds until the bitter and imminent finish, piling just fast enough for the player to see where he needs to position the block, but too soon for the fingers to work effectively.
The Tetris influence, in this respect, is Tetris. The measures are what have changed. In rendering the game a dazzling audio-visual experience, Tetris Effect’s developers have expended their energies – and the outcome is absolutely brilliant. The major Tetris Effect event – the game itself – happens on a comparatively small section of the screen, where the eyes of the player of the living entity are set. Completely different activities take place beyond these limits: 3D graphics, once from a distant galaxy, once from African tribes pounding drums, once from the depths of the ocean, responding to stage success and actions of players.
It feels, by and wide, like yesteryear’s screensavers, except with sleek and stunning graphics. His music, mainly from the emotional house regions, of the sort he might have performed a year ago in clubs at five in the morning for each point as well – though really not just. And here comes the true twist: this music reacts to the game continuously.
Tetris Effect is not just Tetris, it is also a sound toy – you spin the bricks on a pivot to meet the designed route and the drums match appropriately, or, with each push of a button, you admire chorus symbols in especially amazing moves. The ensuing feeling is almost psychedelic, combined with the fact that the actor’s eyes lie deep in the middle of the screen while something colorful and space flickers in the corner of the eye. Who would have thought the best and safest clubbing experience in 2020 would come from a modern Tetris version? But the case is that.
Plus, unlike the Tetris classic, the levels themselves are a little smarter here. Instead of the rate of dropping bricks speeding and accelerating on a daily basis to 200 km / h, this time at each point it is different. It lets you do a jog at times, it moves to a more casual pace at times.
By the way, the Tetris Impact came out two years ago specifically for PlayStation 4. The new edition, which is now available for PCs and Xbox, has introduced multiplayer game modes with the Attached extension. Some of these conditions are competitive and some mutual. The mutual fraternities are a genuinely bizarre marvel in which three strangers attempt to clear a map of Tetris without any way of engaging with each rather, other than the opportunity to see where others wish to place their bricks. This can be like a Zen experience, which gives the feeling that the Tower of Babel was a pretty pleasant location, at least part of the time.
Two competitive game modes exist in addition to this. One basically sets next to each other two Tetris boards and whoever scores more points wins. The easiest there is. The second, more complicated and challenging scenario, imports from the single game the time-slowing feature – only this time everything that one player clears on his board during the slow-down is sent to the board of the opponent.
And if it still doesn’t seem like a number, it’s because it’s not that many, actually. There is or should be, no transformation here; there is only a very specific commodity here that knows precisely where it is strong, where it can be improved, and what should not be touched. It’s a Tetris with a lot of ringing and chaos, but it’s a Tetris, in the end. A hero of the brick builders’ class.
Tetris Effect: Connected. Available for Oculus Search and PSVRR on PC, PS4 / 5, Xbox One / X / S and VR.