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The timeless classic makes an appearance on the Virtual Boy.
Author: B. Hodges | Date: 2002/12/19 | Rating: 8/10


VTetris was released for the Virtual Boy in August of 1995. It was only released in Japan.

Gameplay - 8/10

This is the Tetris we all know and love. You place pieces in a well in such a way that they form a line all the way across, then that line is cleared. The game is over when your pieces land above the line at the top of the well.

There are three modes to choose from. Mode A is Classic Endless. You just keep playing until the well fills up. Mode B is Classic Standard. Here you must clear a certain number of lines to advance to the next level. When you do, you start the next level with an empty well. Mode C is New Type Loop. This mode is new for this game. This is like endless with three exceptions. First of all in this mode you can use the R and L buttons to rotate the container left or right to give you more space to place blocks. Secondly if you clear only one line in this mode, you are penalized. The penalty is a line piece being dropped in the back of the container more than likely causing gaps. Lastly, in this mode it is possible to clear more than 4 lines at once. You will notice that sometimes after you rotate the container, you will end up with one or more rows completed. To erase them, just complete a row with a block and all complete rows on the screen will disappear. It is possible to clear the entire well (22 lines), but this is difficult to do.

The controls are good and the same as other Tetris games, use the control pad to move and A & B to rotate the piece. In this version it seems like you get more time to slide a piece after it has landed.

Story - N/A

There isn't a background story, you just play Tetris.

Graphics - 8/10

The graphics are decent. The blocks look good considering the colors available. The 3D in the game are the backgrounds. Each mode has two backgrounds to choose from. Background A will be moving and B will be a stationary scene with some clowns. The moving ones are pretty cool, I really like the underwater one. While these are nice, they pale in comparison to the backgrounds in Panic Bomber.

Sound - 7/10

The sound effects are standard Tetris fare. You here the blocks land and the lines clear. The music is kind of good, but lacks the Russian flavor of the Game Boy version. For modes A and B, you can choose between three different background songs or choose to play in silence. In mode C, you don't get this choice, you are stuck with a new song.

Playing Time/Replay Value - 7/10

This game is a lot of fun, which you would suspect from a Tetris game. The new loop mode is pretty neat and you will spend a lot of time trying to clear 22 lines at once. The replay value is hurt a little for two reasons. The first is that the game doesn't save your high scores, which is strange because the point of playing over and over again is to beat your old score. The second problem is that even with the new loop mode, this is basically the same Tetris that we have all been playing for years.

Buy, Borrow, or Avoid? - Buy

Definitely buy this one. Copies are easy to find for under $5. Even though this is a Japanese game, it will work on an American Virtual Boy without any modifications.

Overall Score - 8/10

This is a really fun game. It's classic Tetris action with a facelift that will provide you with hours of entertainment. Even if you have played the other versions to death, the 3D effects and brand new mode C breathe new life into this timeless classic.