Starting a game of Tetris is one of the great meditative experiences. The blocks fall gently from the top of the screen, waiting for the player to guide them into orderly rows. Arrange the blocks properly and neatly enough and they blink out of existence, the screen ready for more tidy constructions. It’s a process of organization and cleaning without any physical exertion. Even as the speed ramps up, the rules remain fair and the game consistent.
Well, luckily for the demons among us, gnashing our teeth at the thought of relaxation and balance, there’s a new, fan-made version of Tetris that’s designed not to soothe, but to actively antagonize its player.
Tetrolled was made in two hours as part of the 42nd Ludum Dare, an event where creators work off of a given theme to make a game in a limited amount of time. Travesol_Dog apparently considered the “running out of space” theme a prime opportunity to remix Tetris so that it seems to hate your fucking guts.
In Tetrolled, four-piece blocks fall from the top of the screen as you’d expect, but, in a real slap to the face, obstructing pieces will just sort of pop into existence right where they’re most inconvenient. Everything about it looks like normal Tetris, and the first seconds feel like normal Tetris. Accordingly, the player’s brain is primed for an enjoyable experience, only to be rocked off its axis by a design tweak truly nefarious in its wretched simplicity.
The best way to truly understand Tetrolled’s evil is to take it for a spin yourself. Only by feeling the injustice of the game first-hand can its full depravity be understood. On the game’s page, creator Travesol_Dog sums up his mischievous puzzle homunculus as being “like Tetris except the game doesn’t really care.” This is too easy an escape route for the creator of this monstrosity. A better description might be: “like Tetris except the game spits in the face of the very concept of a just reality.” It is what we deserve.
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