Puyo Puyo and Tetris have both had prominent places in the puzzle genre, each offering a different type of unique gameplay. Many different iterations have been created throughout each franchise’s existence but how will it fare when tetrimino meets puyo?
What Is It?
Tetris is a game of where players are trying to clear lines by aligning tetriminoes, four square blocks forming six different possible shapes. This gameplay has remained true since the game first was created in 1984, only to allow for small changes that enhance the gameplay such as holds and a much more forgiving rotation system.
In Puyo Puyo, round slime-like creatures fall from the sky in a mix of colors as players try to organize them so that four or more are touching vertically and horizontally.
Why Should I Care?
Like most puzzle games, both Puyo Puyo and Tetris have both a single player and multiplayer mode.
In single player, the high score or fastest time is the usual goal. Single player Tetris has been a favorite pastime as clearing 40 lines or beating my previous high score is satisfying. Playing solo allows you to focus solely on the task at hand without worrying about much else. It’s just you versus you, with no one else to place blame on or rage about. The ability to jump into either game from the main menu makes this the perfect quick play game.
Multiplayer is a different beast, pitting players against each other where chaos ensues. Favor one game over the other? Not a problem as each player can choose their game of choice when entering the battlefield. This is a great way to allow each player to play the mode with which they’re more familiar. All those lines and puyos you just popped? Well, those are raining down on another player’s field surely throwing a wrench in their finely tuned machine. The techniques from single player won’t be as helpful here. Speed, combos, and the ability to recover quickly are all important skills that are needed to survive the multiplayer battle grounds. Every multiplayer mode is available online as well as locally.
While you can play both Puyo Puyo and Tetris in single player and multiplayer, two new modes are unique to this collaboration. Swap mode and Fusion mode, available in single and multiplayer versions, are true gems that allow the best of both worlds to exist. Swap mode gives each player two playing fields, one Tetris and one Puyo Puyo. After an allotted time, the boards swap and each player picks up where they left off. This has proven to be a very fun mode where one player may be a Tetris titan while the other may be a Puyo Puyo pro. One of the best feelings is when a player is about to lose, only for the board to switch to their favored game and making that comeback.
Fusion mode gives each player one board with mixed tetriminoes and puyos. At first glance, it looks crazy but after one play, the mechanics become second nature. This is still a mode that is very hard to master as your design and building have to be very much on point in order to maximize points. This mode feels very satisfying when you finally figure out how to best place your pieces.
All of these modes are available from the start but playing the story mode, where you learn each play style over time, feels like the best place to begin in order to master both games. You also get to learn to love the characters the make up each game’s world.
What Makes It Worth My Time And Money?
Within the first few hours of playing Puyo Puyo Tetris it was easy to say that I had gotten my money’s worth.
In the past, I’ve been very critical of the various versions of Tetris that have been offered. This version may be the go-to for years for come for how accessible it is through the Switch. While I had never played Puyo Puyo before this game, I found it easy to pick up. I have yet to master it, but that’s what really makes this game fun.
Two very different worlds have collided and it’s opened different worlds for players that only stuck to one game. A new respect for Puyo Puyo players was demanded because of how difficult it is to wrap my head around their combos. I’m sure it goes the same way for a Puyo Puyo player picking up Tetris for the first time. While the game does encourage getting to know how to play both, it also finds a great job of not penalizing a player for favoring a game. Being able to play either game in battle mode without one feeling more overpowering was very surprising.
Overall, this collaboration appears to be a happy coupling. Tetriminoes and puyos may come from two very different worlds but Puyo Puyo Tetris serves as the perfect stage for both to shine. Being able to pop the Joy-Cons off and play on the go made for some spontaneous good times. The Switch is the perfect platform for multiplayer games like this. Without a doubt, Puyo Puyo Tetris is best puzzler on the Nintendo Switch.