Tetrisphere

Tetrisphere

Stamping the Tetris name onto something only tangentially related to the puzzle classic is a bold move, but Tetrisphere manages to uphold the spirit of its inspiration. It’s got simple controls and an infectious soundtrack, you’ll spend half the game raging at the pieces you’re receiving, and most importantly, if you play it for more than half an hour, you can see its gameplay when you close your eyes. What it doesn’t have, despite its name, is accessibility. Its mechanics are strange and often frustrating – the rules for aligning pieces are inconsistent, “garbage” pieces in multiplayer are disproportionately ruinous, and the focus on chain reactions shifts the balance of skill and luck uncomfortably toward luck.

This is primarily a game of ideas, however. Playing a match-three game with polyominoes on a layered sphere was an impressive demonstration of the fledgling N64’s capabilities, and it was and still is a unique setup that I’m astonished hasn’t been spiritually succeeded by some enterprising indie developer. Multiple modes exist, including one that is itself a collection of gameplay variants, offering a surprisingly robust amount of single-player content. However, most of these are simply variations of “expose the sphere’s core,” so repetition will inevitably set in. Still, this concept, if only it can be polished, is aching for a modern revival, especially with VR around.

6/10
6/10

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.