Tetris Goes Full Circle

As a game concept, Tetris gave humanity nearly four solid decades of engagement, but with the possibility for only seven possible puzzle pieces it might seem a little bit limiting. Especially now that someone has finally beaten the game, it could be argued that as a society it might be time to look for something new. Sinusoidal Tetris flips these limits on their head with a theoretically infinite set of puzzle pieces for an unmistakable challenge.

Like Tetris, players control a game piece as it slowly falls down the screen. Instead of blocks, however, the game piece is a sinusoid that stretches the entire width of the screen. Players control the phase angle, amplitude, and angular frequency in order to get it to cancel out the randomly-generated wave in the middle of the screen. When the two waves overlap, a quick bit of math is done to add the two waves together. If your Fourier transformation skills aren’t up to the task, the sinusoid will eventually escape the playing field resulting in a game over. The goal then is to continually overlap sinusoids to play indefinitely, much like the original game.

While we’re giving Tetris a bit of a hard time, we appreciate the simplicity of a game that’s managed to have a cultural impact long after the gaming systems it was originally programmed for have become obsolete, and this new version is similar in that regard as well. The game can be quite addictive with a lot to take in at any given moment. If you’re more interested in the programming for these types of games than the gameplay, though, take a look at this deep-dive into Tetris for the NES.