Review: Tetris (iPhone)

For years, man has yearned to place variously shaped blocks into neat, organized rows. Tetris has spread from Gameboys to calculators and now finds itself on the iPhone. While there are other applications that offer a similar experience, none are as well executed as (or had the budget of) EA’s Tetris.

Upon loading, you are treated to the classic Tetris theme that then gets spun into a modern house remix. The music in the game, while updated from the classic Russian tracks, is something out of a low key martini lounge. It’s pleasant enough to relax you while blocks come tumbling down and gives the game a playful and enjoyable feel.

There are two modes of play: Marathon and Magic. Marathon is the classic version of the game that gives players an increasing amount of lines to clear while also increasing in speed. There are 15 levels of difficulty (15 is impossible unless you can move faster than the speed of light) and all are playable from the get go. Magic is a newer mode that introduces certain usable items during the rounds. They include innovative tools such as a Magic Crayon that allows you to draw your desired shape, and a Minimizer that allows you to shrink them with a pinch of the fingers.

The use of items and basic maneuvering is performed well, giving a real feel of control which was previously not as tactile as other mobile phone versions. The graphics are fluid and the colors are vibrant, but not overwhelming. Thus, this major title by a company like EA proves that classics can be given a new life and a modern twist that takes advantage of the iPhone’s capabilities. It does all this while maintaining the core entertaining factor of the game and makes the simple functionality so easy to use. There may be imitators, but there is only one true Tetris.

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