Coming soon to North America for the Nintendo Switch, Puyo Puyo Tetris has actually been available for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in Japan for a few years. Figuring that this one would never make it to the west, I bought an Japanese copy of it on PlayStation 4 from a vendor at Fan Expo. What can you expect when it finally makes its way here? Well, I can’t read Japanese, so I can’t assess everything in the game. However, I think I’ve played enough of it to give you the scoop on what to expect.
Puyo Puyo Tetris is made up of a myriad of different game modes. If you want to play classic Puyo Puyo or Tetris, those are available to you. However, there are modes that mash the two together in different ways. In one, you’re managing one Puyo Puyo board and one Tetris board, flipping between the two every few seconds. In another, you’re using both Puyo Puyo pieces and Tetris pieces on the same board.
You’re going to play these and more in the Story mode. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of dialogue written in Japanese between levels, so I couldn’t decipher any of it. However, it does feature 70 different levels that mess with both games in a myriad of different ways. It’s short, but it kept me entertained for the few days I played through it.
While it’s certainly fun, mixing the two games brought forth a unique challenge. I fancy myself to be a good Tetris player, so I was able to breeze through most of the Tetris-related content. On the other hand, I’m a beginner at best with Puyo Puyo. I struggled mightily once things started to get hard, but I think the game has a system in place where the game gets easier after numerous failed attempts. Getting through it all is only a matter of time.
I like playing the two games and their subsequent challenges separately, though the modes where they’re mashed together are a bit messy. The mode that switches between the two is alright, but it’s not my preferred way to play. The mode where they’re mixed together is pretty chaotic with a few too many rules to keep track of. In particular the shapes that switch between Tetris blocks and Puyo Puyo blobs can be super annoying when they change states the instant before they lock in.
The campaign is short, but the local and online multiplayer modes should keep you busy for a while. Up to four players locally can battle it out across many of the different modes available. You can even mix-and-match so that someone playing Puyo Puyo can battle someone playing Tetris with it being a reasonably fair fight. This is probably the coolest part of the whole experience, as players with different skill sets can battle on a seemingly level playing field.
I only got to play a little bit online, as there were seemingly very few players on. Not surprised, as the game is a few years old in Japan and they’re on the other side of the time line. For the few games I did play, it ran smoothly and was quite fun to battle.
If you’re looking for a modern version of Puyo Puyo and Tetris, you’re basically getting two games in one here. When the worlds collide in terms of gameplay, things get a bit rocky. Once you play through those rough patches in the story, you can enjoy your favourites online, with friends or against