Released in March of 1996, 3DTetris was the last North American title to be released for the Virtual Boy. True to its title, 3DTetris attempts to take the 2D premise of falling Tetris blocks and place them into a three-dimensional square well. Both the well and Tetris pieces are presented to the player in wireframe shapes, making it difficult for accurate placement of pieces, especially when levels become multi-tiered. You would think that because the well is shown in 3D, you could rotate it to get the best attack vector, but you are limited to only a few static views that don’t reveal much. A 2D blueprint located on the right side of the screen ends up being the most accurate way to clear a line of pieces, defeating the purpose of the game being 3D in the first place. 3DTetris offers three different game modes to bring variety to the game, but no matter what way you play, it’s hindered by the poor graphics and viewing angle. After 45 minutes of gameplay, I finally got to the best part: turning it off.
With Tetris being such a popular franchise and its overall simple gameplay concept, you would think that Nintendo would have made sure to send off their doomed system with a gem. Unfortunately, much like the Virtual Boy itself, 3DTetris ended up just being an eyesore. If you absolutely have to play a Tetris game on the Virtual Boy, I recommend the Japanese exclusive V-Tetris instead. V-Tetris doesn’t detract much from the regular Tetris formula, but it is fun to play and won’t make your eyes bleed.
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