Reviewed by Sandip
We were lucky enough to receive the game Tetris Dual to play and review. The game is aimed at children ages 6+ years old but even 40+ year old me had a go and enjoyed it. We’ve all heard about and have more than likely played the popular Tetris game from the 1980s but rather than play a digital version, this is a table top game.
The game is made entirely of plastic but it is decently made so should last years to come. The game come with a black base unit which features an LCD display, the colourless, clear, vertical grid matrix, and space to store the 50 tetris shapes ,or Tetriminos as they are techinically called, in. The Tetriminos (I guess a mixture of Tetris and Dominos) are in a bright blue and orange. Inside the box is also an instruction booklet instructing you on how to play the 2 game versions; which are Speed and Countdown.
All you need are 3 x AA batteries (not included in the box) and to clip the clear vertical matrix into the base and you are good to go. Once you’ve chosen whether you are blue or orange that is.
My kids are 7 and 10 and we have played the Speed game mostly. Here each player has 60 seconds to pick up the pre-defined shape as depicted on the LCD screen and slot it into the correct space. If your timer on the screen runs out, you lose your turn. Or once you’ve put your piece in, you will either gain or lose points depending on how you have placed in with respect to what’s already in the matrix from the previous rounds. The biggest challenge is making sure you don’t leave any gaps because if you do, you lose points. Each press of the + or – buttons next to the LCD display add/deducts the value of the shape to or from a player’s score. The overall winner is the person with the most points at the end.
In the game Countdown, there is a running countdown and you can score bonus points if you complete the game before the timer runs out.
In terms of the scoring, we initially struggled to work out the the point systems made a few mistakes meaning we had to restart a few games before we fully understood it. It does not automatically score your points when you drop your Tetrimino into place; you have to do it yourself by pressing the + or – buttons. The scoring gets a lot easier once you have played a couple rounds. My 7 year old was able to grasp it eventually but it did take a few goes. We ended up having the 2 kids playing and one of us adults being in charge of the scoring until they understood what to press when and then played by themselves.
When you are done playing with Tetris Dual, you can detach the vertical matrix and pop everything back in the box which makes it handy for storage and portability. The downside is not having a little bag to store the Tetriminos shapes in as I can see these little shapes getting lost as the original cardboard box gets worn over time.
Tetris Dual is an enjoyable family game that can become very competitive. I don’t think it is going to be one that is going to be played every week, but I can see it coming out on rainy weekends, half terms etc so it would make and great all year round present for birthdays, Christmas etc.
Overall, I would score Tetris Dual 3/5 based on it’s repeat playability, cost and build quality.
It is available to purchase from Amazon.co.uk here.