- Developer - Electronic Arts
- Platforms - Android, iOS
- Device tested - Samsung Galaxy S3
- Price - Free
You know Tetris, yes? You know how much strategy is involved, how much placement and timing? Ease the right shape into the right hole and you can clear the whole board in move. Stick an I-block where you should have put an L-block, and it can mean game over.
Well, Tetris Blitz, from EA is like Tetris but with almost none of that strategy. Like Bejeweled Blitz, its spiritual predecessor, it has you play quickfire rounds to see how many points you can rack up in two minutes. You drag and drop blocks using your phone's touch screen and, as ever, score points by clearing chunks of tetriminos.
This is Tetris on heat, basically. A far throw from the 8-bit humility of the original, the visuals in Tetris Blitz are flashy, strobing and neon, perfectly accompanying the pulsing music and booming sound effects. There are power-ups now, too. "Magnet" drags falling blocks into the best possible slot, where "Timeshift" can rewind you back a few blocks if you make a cock-up. A neat marketing ploy by EA, a new power-up will be released and available to download (for money) every week.
There's also a mad hard Frenzy Mode which is doubly quick and lets you score double the points, and as per every mobile game in the world these days, you can compare your scores on Facebook leaderboards.
It's hard to come up with a downside to this one. It's fun, challenging, colourful and compulsive. The only people likely to not like Tetris Blitz are crazed, die-hard Tetris fans miffed at EA for messing with the old formula. But you know what? Old Tetris was a bit boring - if you're looking for something to jolt you awake on the way to work, Tetris Blitz is ideal. Unless you drive to work, in which case, wait until lunch.
Oh, and don't be put off by the in-app purchases. We know they always seem a bit insidious and there have been stories about kids blowing their inheritance on gems in Temple Run, but Tetris Blitz is a bit more dignified about micro-transactions. They're there if you want them, but the game doesn't flash up little messages offering you pay-per power-ups or anything like that.
Tetris Blitz is loud, bright and energetic. You can get it now on Android or iOS.