What is there to say about Tetris, that perhaps hasn’t already been said. Quite possibly in 1984, Alexey Pajitnov created the greatest video game of all time. Not that he saw much financially in return for the millions of sales until the late 90s. Alexey was an artificial intelligence developer behind the iron curtain for the Dorodnisyn Computing Centre of the Academy of Science of the Soviet Union. Not sure Alexey could have envisioned a future with Tetris being available on near every device. A word embedded into the pop culture.
Fast forward through the nostalgic history and legal squabbles. Tetris Effect subtly pulls you in, before blowing your mind with stunning visual scapes and incredibly immersive sound. Tetris Effect is developed and produced by Monstars and published by Enhance Inc. Lead by former SEGA AM3 lead Tetsuya Mizuguchi, developer of the legendary Sega Rally and the rhythm shooter mind-bending Rez. Held in high regard as one of the most unique Dreamcast titles. Monstar and Enhance Inc, brought Rez Infinite to the Playstation and the PSVR platform. Opening up tantalizing possibilities for what could come next. Though in truth, Tetsuya has been seeking to bring a combination of Rez and Tetris since at least 2012, with the license being unavailable until relatively recently. Rez sound designer and academy award nominee Noboru Mutoh involved too. Tetris Effect, then began to take shape, an analogy that perhaps is more best aptly to say take sound. Sound playing the fundamental key part of the experience.
As far as gameplay is concerned, Tetris’ premise is simple, make a line from falling arrangements of 4 square blocks. When you do so, it disappears and you gain points. Try to not let the blocks build up and Topple Up. Engrossingly fun and addictive.
Tetris Effect is best played in VR, creating the focused space with stunning visuals occurring around the play space with the headphones in for greater immersion. Playing on a TV offers up a higher resolution board, Playstation Pro users are treated to 4K. You would be doing an injustice not to play the game without surround sound or headphones.
There are 2 options on offer from the menu, Journey Mode and Effect Modes. Journey is a progressive series of boards with a variety of background and soundscapes, where you are required to clear a set number of lines to progress to the next, transitions occur in game with a warp speed like acceleration, where you score carries through. If you fail the option to retry, or return to the stage select of the cleared stages. Stunning in their variety, have included a number of screen shots below. Stand out levels are the Da Vinci, with a passive relaxing theme with windmills passing in the background with stunning lighting effects as the level progresses and the XXXX featuring worshippers chanting with a heavy beat techno rhythm.
Effect Modes, effectively brings players together, with competitive leaderboards for those eager to get make themselves known with bragging rights in score and lines. Dynamic cooperative score challenges, unlock avatars and icons. A variety of game modes and types, to challenge and relax to. Marathon getting the best score with a 150 line limit. Ultra clearing as many lines within a fixed time. Clearing special infected blocks by forming lines containing them as well as weekly challenges. The indomitable Master mode, often referred to as invisible Tetris, pieces coming at such speed they appear as if they dropped in an mere instant. Be warned not for the faint of heart or those who blink!
Tetris Effect is a veritable visual and audible feast, that will hold you hooked and eager to play just one more.
Available now exclusively on Playstation. On the PS Store. Albeit in the UK, no physical release has been made available! PAL regions do have releases but only in Sweden and Italy! So a quick import nab if you want a physical.
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