If you’ve ever played Tetris for an extended period of time, you’ve definitely been subjected to the “Tetris Effect” – where you see tetromino pieces stacking themselves while you’re dozing off, or even when daydreaming. It’s something that’s been studied by scientists for quite some time, and as an inevitable side effect of the repetitive nature of the game, it’s nice to know that no, your brain isn’t turning to mush, this is supposed to happen.
However, studies such as the one on Tetris do play a role in how we perceive video games, and as it turns out, it’s beginning to influence how game developers create video games.
This is what Tetsuya Mizuguchi is doing with the newly released game “Tetris Effect”
What Is “Tetris Effect?”
Tetris Effect is the newest available version of Tetris that’s been released. However, while previous versions of Tetris have only featured cosmetic changes, Tetris Effect aims to build upon the discoveries that scientists and studies have uncovered about the Tetris effect on the brain. The phenomenon is the basis for the game’s design here, with intense visuals and captivating music, as well as a “slow-down” mechanic that all work together to make Tetris Effect a truly enthralling experience.
You see, games like Tetris are textbook examples of what happens when someone achieves “flow” – a state where one is so focused on a specific activity or task that all outside noises and distractions seemingly disappear, and you’re not actively thinking or overthinking decisions you make in whatever you’re doing. This happens often in a game of Tetris, where blocks are falling at light speed and yet we know exactly where to place them as if they were moving in slow motion.
Tetris Effect builds on this with some minor tweaks to the gameplay, and with a superbly designed art style that builds on the accomplishments, you make in the game. The effects triggered from getting one completed line will be different from completing a full Tetris. Add to that the intricate sounds when moving and placing pieces, as well as music that fits the atmosphere perfectly, and you’ll find yourself playing to the music and moving with the visuals – not that you’ll notice of course, as you’ll be deep in the Tetris effect.
Tetris Effect seems to be one of the first games that’s tried to innovate itself based off a phenomenon it created itself. It will be interesting to see what else comes of this type of initiative, but the game is a wonderful addition to the Tetris legend.
Tetris Effect is out now, available on the PlayStation store.