Tetris Battle puts a new spin on the classic arcade game by pitting you against friends and other Facebook users in a one-on-one death-match. If you’re already a Tetris expert, those skills will come in handy, but make no mistake, Tetris Battle is a different game.
If you can navigate your way through the abundance of ads, requests, and offers…
If you can navigate your way through the abundance of ads, requests, and offers at the start, then beginning a game is quite simple.
From the opening menu you’ll be able to jump into a battle, where you’ll be paired with a random Facebook user. Tetris Battle is very much a social game in the same way chess or checkers is. Playing solo isn’t nearly as fun as with a live opponent.
Tetris Battle - OVERVIEW
By default you’ll be matched up with a player of the same rank, but this isn’t necessarily a live game you’ll be playing. To ensure that you’re playing against another person in real time, and not someone’s replay, look to the list of recommended opponents to the left of the screen. If you select one, it will send a request to that player, and if they accept, you’ll be dropped into a live game with a real opponent. This greatly enhances the game’s experience, both on a social and gameplay level.
Unlike other Facebook games that claim to have multiplayer, Tetris Battle’s live competitive play is a much better way to enjoy a game with friends, and even connect with strangers. From a social standpoint, it allows you to meet other Facebook users around the world and even chat with them. You’ll know it’s a live game if you say hello in the chatbox at the bottom and get a message back, adding to the feel that there’s a living person on the other side of the screen. While you likely won’t get much conversation out of most players, there’s always the chance to swap tips or dish out a few taunts if you think you’re winning!
On a strategic level, the live competition makes a huge difference to the way you play. Like normal Tetris, your goal is to form complete horizontal lines to break blocks and keep them from reaching the top. In Tetris Battle, however, completing multiple lines in a combo will result in extra ‘garbage lines’ being sent to your opponent, bringing you closer to victory. The player to send the most lines to the other after 2 minutes wins the game. This means you won’t simply win by making all the pieces fit; you have to do so as quickly as possible. Having a live opponent means you can see what they’re doing and react to it. If they are a few lines ahead of you, you can set up the appropriate number of blocks and score a combo at the last second to take the lead.
The one downside to playing with others is that you may have to wait a minute or two before you can get the game started. When you first challenge an opponent, they might be in the middle of another match, meaning you’ll have to wait before they respond. Once you’re matched up with someone, you also have to wait for them to get ready before the game can begin. This is a minor inconvenience compared to the advantages of having a live opponent, however.
In Tetris Battle, every victory scores you stars, and every defeat loses you a star. Once you reach 5 stars, you go up in rank, allowing you to challenge more skilled opponents. Experience points are also awarded, and do not affect you ranking, but allow access to additional power-ups and different game modes. Leveling up can take a rather long time though, and you might find yourself pouring hours of play into the game before you can even unlock the next game mode.
If you’re a free user, you’ll find your play time limited by the amount of ‘energy’ you have. Energy is consumed every time you play a game, and can only be replenished by taking a break, or spending coins, meaning you might run out if you’re unwilling to pay for more. If you are interested in shelling out a little money, there are some interesting customization options to give you a more unique online presence. Every aspect of your game can be altered, such as your minos, avatar, and even your gameplay settings such as placement speed. These upgrades are nice, since they don’t directly affect the fairness of the game, and instead give the player the chance to feel more unique. Power-ups can also be purchased, but since they are so easy to acquire in game, they are probably the least valuable item in the shop.
The game evolves even more at level 10 when you unlock the “Battle 6P” mode, in which you are pitted against 5 other players in a free-for-all battle. The premise is similar to the 2-player mode, except victory is awarded to the player with the most “KOs”. A KO, or knockout, occurs whenever an opposing player’s screen fills up with blocks after you send lines to them. As you play, a target will appear over one of your opponents, allowing you to do a combo and send lines to their screen when you see them get dangerously close to the top.
If you’ve avoided Tetris in the past out of a lack of patience for puzzle games, you might want to give Tetris Battle a try. It might seem like a simple spinoff of its originator, but the excitement that comes with a true multiplayer experience is sure to get former critics interested in this new incarnation.
Tetris Battle- STRATEGY
Once you get the hang of placing minos and organizing your matrix, that’s when you can start to plan combos. Build your pile as high as possible, leaving just enough space for one crucial block to complete several lines at once. Keep in mind that clearing a single line won’t earn you any points unless you can follow it up with a combo. So if you see the perfect fit to complete a line, don’t do it right away, and instead try to build your way to more points.
If you see grey lines appearing at the bottom of your matrix, these are ‘garbage lines’ and are received whenever your opponent completes a combo. Garbage lines will raise your blocks higher, bringing your opponent closer to a KO point. If you see them start to pile up, you’ll want to destroy them by placing your minos directly on top of ‘bomb’ icons littered throughout. This will clear the lines immediately so you can focus on sending some of your own to the other player.
If you find you’re struggling, then feel free to play a few games where you can pay close attention to your opponent, and figure out their strategies. If you’re playing a live game, the chat box is available for communication, and you can always find friendly players who are willing to give advice.
When it comes to playing Battle 6P, the strategy is a bit more complex. The player with the most ‘KOs’ wins the game, and like in Battle 2P, you can only earn them by filling up your opponents matrix with garbage lines. Since you’re battling 5 other players at once, you’ll have to choose wisely who to send lines to. As the game goes on, a target moves from player to player. If you complete a combo, those garbage lines are sent to the player currently holding the target, so you’ll have to keep an eye on your opponents to decide who to send lines to, and when to send them.
Tetris Battle - TIPS, HINTS & CHEATS
- If you press the shift key, then your current block will be stored on the left side of your matrix, allowing you to access it later. Use this to save the long straight minos, as you can place them in the right spot to clear 4 lines at once (a technique aptly known as a ‘Tetris’)!
- Once you’ve become competent at placing your minos effectively and neatly, try using the spacebar. This will drop the block instantly to the bottom directly beneath it. This will allow you to place minos much quicker; an essential advantage considering you only have two minutes! Be careful however, as this quick drop technique can be quite unforgiving if you haven’t planned your move carefully.
- Keep an eye on the top right corner; this is the next block in queue. As you place your current mino, think about the next one and how it will fit into the pile you’re creating. If you’re clever enough, you might be able to clear several lines with one block, and then several more with the next.
- Feel free to trick your opponent into thinking you’re worse than you really are. If you’re playing a live match, let them get comfortable in the lead by a few points. Once they are confident they’re about the win, complete a major combo in the last few seconds before they even have a chance to realize what happened!
- Using the chatbox can also work to your advantage. While there’s no rule against it, taunting your opponent in the middle of a match might be just enough of a distraction to throw them off and give you an edge; just make sure you’re a quick typist first!l else fails, there are cheats available on the internet which make strategy redundant. Some are simple, and will automatically unlock unlimited gold and coins so that you can play endlessly with all the magic powers you want.