Puyo Puyo Tetris brings together two classic puzzle games into a mash up of cheeky anime style and mind-bending madness. Those who grew up playing Tetris or Puyo Puyo on classic consoles or in the arcades will feel right at home, while new players will be welcomed by the lighthearted and cutesy presentation. A simple story campaign and some solid online game modes will keep everyone busy playing for a long time. However, what makes Puyo Puyo Tetris stand out is the clashing of both styles of gameplay, making for a fun yet chaotic experience for both single player and multiplayer sessions.
You must be really disconnected from the world to not know about Tetris, but not everyone will know offhand about the game Puyo Puyo. Much like Tetris, Puyo Puyo is a classic match four arcade game that has you clearing lines of slime, commonly known as puyo, along a board similar to Tetris. This is why the style of gameplay between both titles mesh so well. Puyo Puyo Tetris plays with this concept by having you play games of Tetris and Puyo Puyo at the same time, and in some cases against one another.
This back and forth between both styles can be seen in Puyo Puyo Tetris’ story mode. The story may be too simplistic and cheesy for some, especially if you aren’t a fan of cute anime characters, but the focus remains on the gameplay more than anything else. Much of the narrative is about both Tetris and Puyo Puyo styles mashing together and causing conflict, but presented in a cosmic anime setting.
Each stage of story mode has you completing a challenge or going against another character in a battle of tetriminos and puyos. The criteria and challenge for each stage is always changing, but can be a little monotonous by the time you get halfway through the story. The difficulty increases by the time you reach the end, but a lot of this will depend on your own skill in either Tetris or Puyo Puyo. Story mode never becomes too difficult, but it doesn’t hold your hand and will test your abilities many times.
Puyo Puyo Tetris really shines in its multiplayer game modes, especially with how crazy some of them can be. Up to four players can compete locally or online via the internet in a variety of modes that also include leaderboards. You can play a simple game of Puyo Puyo or Tetris for a more vanilla experience, or you can try any one of the game’s crazy mash up modes between the two.
Swap has everyone playing two games at the same time that switch between Tetris and Puyo Puyo within timed intervals, requiring you to split your attention. A crazier experience however is Fusion, which places both tetriminos and puyos on the same board for everyone with the same rules from both games. Between having four players and varying rules, games of Puyo Puyo Tetris can get incredibly tense and exciting for everyone.
A small nitpick that some players may have is with the balancing for ranked matches. Having a Versus match between a Tetris player and a Puyo Puyo player can arguably be a little unbalanced, this is because of how easy it can be for the Puyo Puyo player to garner big combos and send many blocks over to the opponent’s board. In situations like this, it can be harder early in a match for the Tetris player to recover or counteract as quickly against the other player. However, if you aren’t concerned about your ranking in the online leaderboards, then this won’t affect you too much.
Puyo Puyo Tetris is a well-designed game with an interesting premise that really works. The multiplayer is fun and exciting no matter how many players are involved. The online modes are great and can be enjoyed just as much offline with a few friends. The story may be simple, but the incredibly solid gameplay is the driving force behind everything. If you love puzzle games or have been a fan of either Tetris or Puyo Puyo, there is absolutely no reason for you to skip this.
This review was based on a digital review code of Puyo Puyo Tetris for the PlayStation 4, provided by SEGA.