What is Puyo Puyo Tetris?
Puyo Puyo Tetris is brightly-coloured mash-up that bundles the colour matching of Puyo Pop, and the line clearing of Tetris into one puzzle heavy package. With a light-hearted story mode that ties Puyo Pop and Tetris-related missions into a typically wacky narrative, alongside a healthy number of local and online multiplayer modes, and plenty of single player variations, Puyo Puyo Tetris is a jam-packed compilation for puzzle fans everywhere.
How do you play Puyo Puyo Tetris?
Both Tetris and Puyo Pop are relatively similar puzzle games, in that both see coloured pieces falling from the sky - it's how you have to fit them together that differs. In Tetris, you simply need to create horizontal lines without gaps, with complete lines disappearing when made, while in Puyo Pop you'll need to create groups of four or more like-coloured blobs in order to earn points.
What makes Puyo Puyo Tetris stand out is the sheer amount of modes on offer. From the hefty single player Adventure, which tacks on a story as you play through 60 challenging stages, to the four player (split-screen or online) chaos that the game's five multiplayer modes offer, there's a wide variety of Puyo and Tetris variants to cut your teeth at. With bog standard battle modes, where clearing lines/making matches will send 'junk' pieces over to clutter your opponent's board and make their life harder; puzzle based Fever modes, where you need to clear a board of pre-existing pieces as quickly as possible; and the unique Fusion mode, which sees you playing a game of both Puyo Puyo and Tetris on the same board, with the game alternating between giving you Puyo blobs or Tetrominos, the modes are as numerous as they are inventive.
How easy is Puyo Puyo Tetris to pick up and play?
Generally speaking, Puyo Puyo Tetris is pretty easy to pick up and play, providing you know the basic rules of both Puyo Pop and Tetris. If not, there's a handy Lessons section on the main menu, which will walk you through the ins and outs of both games, as well as the new Fusion mode.
In general, the challenge Puyo Puyo Tetris presents will depend on which mode you're playing. While many - like battles (clear lines/puyos to send 'junk' to your opponents), Tetris Marathon mode (clear 150 lines as the blocks start to drop faster) or Endless Puyo mode (match until you reach the top of the screen to score points) will be familiar if you've played a Puyo/Tetris game before, others, like the new Fusion mode, have a rather steep learning curve, as you're playing both Puyo Pop and Tetris on the same grid at the same time. Even having read up on the Lessons in the menu before you leap in, having to create lines of Tetris pieces and groups of Puyo on the same screen, without scuppering each other, is a bit of a big ask, and at least for the first few games, it'll feel very much like rubbing your stomach and patting your head at the same time. Luckily, should you ever find yourself stuck on a stage in the story mode, the game will give you the option to 'Use Help Mode' (basically, skip), and move on to the next, ensuring you don't stay stuck for too long.
For the youngest of players, whether a reading ability is required or not largely depends on whether they need to access the tutorial. If they're familiar with Tetris or Puyo, they should be good to go here, with the story sections in the game's Adventure mode being fully voiced (and subtitled). However, if they're just finding their feet, they'll want to check out the game's Lessons in the main menu, which are relayed through text alone.
Sample Sentences include:
- "You can save a Puyo or Tetrimino for later by pressing the L1 or R1 button. The Hold piece can be saved for a later turn. But remember, you can only Hold one piece at a time!"
- "Score 10,000 pts before reaching Level 8"
- "Beat Ringo! (Tetris vs Puyo Puyo)"
Being a bright and colourful collection of two puzzle games, there's not really anything untoward in Puyo Puyo Tetris at all - no bad language, no violence and gore and no sex scenes whatsoever. As squeaky clean and inoffensive as the package suggests.
Format Reviewed: Nintendo Switch