Tetris DS Review

Tetris DS is an enchanting, entertaining and charming version of the puzzle game.

Whenever you get a new console, you know you’ll want to have certain games in your collection. Doom, Minecraft, Street Fighter II or Pac-Man are a few examples of titles that anyone can enjoy and so is Tetris. Luckily, Tetris DS is one of the best versions of the beloved Russian puzzler and since most people are going to play some Tetris at some point in their lives, they might as well play it on the DS. This is an enchanting, entertaining and charming version of the game.

Tetris DS 01

As part of the single-player portion, you can play Standard (rotate Tetriminos to form horizontal lines and clear them away, when the falling shapes stack up all the way to the top, you lose,) Catch (you rotate a core and when you form 4×4 blocks you make them explode earning points,) Mission (you complete a series of mission objectives until you run out of hearts,) Puzzle (you solve a series of puzzles,) Touch (you move blocks using the touch screen and as you remove lines, the blocks above fall down,) and Push (you clear lines which pushes your opponent sown, the more lines you clear, the faster you push your opponent, the first player to reach the opposite side of the screen loses.)

There are some multiplayer options as well: you can play against friends locally (up to ten players who don’t have a copy of the cartridge can download one using DS Download Play) and a multiplayer that uses the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection which is no longer supported. Although playing against friends sounded tempting, I ended up playing on my own most of the time, but you can definitely play against others locally and with just one cartridge if you want.

Up until this point, Tetris DS sounds like that. Like a version of Tetris for the Nintendo DS and with a bunch of modes thrown in, but there are a couple of features that set it apart from its hundreds of peers and clones. First, Tetris DS was developed by Nintendo and the game features music, stages, graphics, assets, characters and concepts from Nintendo franchises, including Super Mario Bros, Metroid, Donkey Kong, Balloon Fight, The Legend of Zelda and more. Although this sounds like an inviting distraction, the inclusion of all these properties makes the game much more engaging. Also, while most people will end up playing Standard, some of the new modes are extremely entertaining, especially Mission, Push and Puzzle. Finally, having the opportunity of playing against friends is more than welcome and while not everyone will be able to do this (or not everyone likes to play Tetris multiplayer,) this is definitely a possibility and it’s entertaining.

Tetris DS 02

When it comes to playing the popular Russian puzzler on a portable console, Tetris DS offers the complete package: it has an insane number of modes, you can play both on your own or with other people and then there’s the charm of all the Nintendo characters. Regardless if you want to kill a few hours or a few minutes, this is one of the best ways to experience Tetris on a small screen.