I love Tetris. I knew Tetris had to be on my list and the DS version is the best one out yet. In fact, Tetris DS is the highest rated DS game on my Top 52. Read on to find out why.
Title: Tetris DS
Console: Nintendo DS
Release Date: 03/20/06
My Ranking: #25
Tetris is more than a game. Tetris has become so popular that it has become a cultural phenomenon. One man has been jailed for not turning off his game of Tetris on a flight in England. Tetris has been studied for it's effects on the brain. Some people even have suffered from the Tetris effect, where they either see delusions of blocks falling in their eyes, of look at everyday objects and cannot help but picturing how they form together to make lines.
I've never had delusions of Tetris blocks, but I still organize items into lines in my mind, mostly because of Tetris DS. I've played Tetris for the NES and of course for the Game Boy, but I believe that Tetris DS is the best iteration of the series.
The first thing you'll notice in Tetris DS is that there are classic NES characters running around on the top screen. When you complete lines, Mario will advance in Super Mario Bros., or maybe you'll see Link stabbing Octoroks, or possibly even the Balloon Fight guys flying around hitting balloons. The NES animations are a nice touch to the Tetris game, as both Tetris and the NES characters are nostalgic.
Tetris DS had everything that I think Tetris should have. Tetris DS has the hold feature, where you can store on piece on the side and swap it out for another. Tetris DS also has the "easy spin" feature, where the Tetrominoes don't automatically stick to the pieces upon touching them, allowing you to spin pieces to place them properly. Tetris DS also has six playing modes, most of which are good, and the game also has online play.
Tetris DS has the marathon mode where you can just play forever, and I've maxed out the lines completed counter at 999 multiple times. Within marathon mode though, they also have versus CPU and the CPU character on the highest level is pretty hard so that stays enjoyable. Seriously, if you make one mistake against a level 5 CPU, you lose. I like that. Tetris should appeal to the insane.
Tetris DS also had mission mode, where you have to complete different tasks in an allotted time. Tasks include easy tasks like "clear four lines at once" or ones that require a bit preparation like "clear 2 lines with [insert tetromino here]." All of this action happens with NES Link in the background and the timer is ten heart containers slowly draining if you don't complete the task.
One other mode I'll highlight is one that Lima really enjoyed. This mode was called Touch and required you to use the stylus. To start, tons of tetrominoes would be placed randomly together, forming a large tower. At the top of the tower would be a bunch of caged balloons. The goal is to use the stylus to turn the blocks, form lines that would disappear and then have the balloons reach the floor. I don't know why Lima enjoyed this mode so much, but at least it was creative, I think.
For all of Nintendo's problems with Wi-Fi, their online play for Tetris DS was awesome. I still find games very quickly and all of the games are really intense. When you complete a line, you send grey blocks to your opponent from the bottom up. However, the blocks you send are lined up perfectly, so if it's open, you'll give your opponent a free Tetris that he'll send back to you, and then you'll send back it back to him, and so forth. It's addictive and you need to be stupid fast.
I still play Tetris DS and I still play it online. Whenever I'm having a bad day, I still put this game on and watch lines (and my problems) disappear. I've always been a Tetris lover, and there's no question that Tetris DS is the best I've seen in classic Tetris iterations. Multiple modes, quirky but fitting NES graphics, and reliable and competitive online play. Tetris DS is one DS game I'll be playing for years to come.
My Top 52:
#52 --- Star Fox 64 (N64)
#51 --- Kirby's Adventure (NES)
#50 --- Roller Coaster Tycoon (PC)
#49 --- Grand Theft Auto III (PS2)
#48 --- Metroid Prime (GC)
#47 --- Halo 3 (Xbox 360)
#46 --- Bomberman 64 (N64)
#45 --- Guitar Hero II (PS2)
#44 --- Super Street Fighter II (GEN)
#43 --- Pokemon Puzzle League (N64)
#42 --- Soul Calibur II (GC)
#41 --- Gears of War (Xbox 360)*
#40 --- Elite Beat Agents (DS)
#39 --- Call of Duty 4 (PS3)
#38 --- Super Metroid (SNES)
#37 --- The Orange Box (PS3)*
#36 --- Metal Gear Solid (PS)
#35 --- Doom (PC)
#34 --- Super Mario Kart (SNES)
#33 --- Mischief Makers (N64)
#32 --- Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)
#31 --- Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars (SNES)
#30 --- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Justice for All (DS)
#29 --- Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door (GC)
#28 --- F-Zero (SNES)
#27 --- Katamari Damacy (PS2)*
#26 --- Mario Kart 64 (N64)
#25 --- Tetris DS (DS)*
*- Denotes highest ranked game for that console