You Should Seriously Play: Welltris (Atari ST)

I’ve been collecting Tetris games for a while now, and I recently stumbled upon this game called Welltris on Atari ST. Since I was quite new to the Atari ST and only had around 4 or 5 games for it I thought why not! So I picked it up from eBay :) I wasn’t quite sure whether or not to include it in my Tetris Collection since it’s not called “Tetris”, and it’s not the typical 2D-type falling blocks that Tetris is all about. Because I don’t want to have to include games like Block Out that is completely 3D and not called Tetris or Panel de Pon which have different shapes and functions than Tetris, you just switch places of blocks of the same color to try and match them and it builds up from below. If I would add these then I could basically add ANY puzzle game out there, like Tsuyoshi Shikari Shinasai which is one of my favorites, that works kind of like Puyo Puyo, but these games are NOT Tetris. They are puzzle games, and they are perhaps INSPIRED by Tetris, but it’s not Tetris.

Welltris however got to have a place in the Tetris Collection for two reasons.
1.  It’s not like Block Out, you just build on one layer, the only difference from regular Tetris is that you can build from 4 different directions of the board instead of just from above.
2. It is actually kind of like a sequel to Tetris, made by the same creator! Alexey Pajitnov! :D Therefore it does deserve a place in the Tetris Collection ^_^

I was pleasantly surprised when I finally got the game playing, it was the first game I’ve tried out on my Atari 1040ST :) I first had issues using the original Atari screen, because it was monochrome and apparently not able to display the games I attempted to load, once I switched to a regular CRT it worked perfectly though ^_^ I was sure Welltris would be like Block Out though so I was happy to see that it wasn’t. Here when a block falls down you can rotate around the four walls, kind of like in Tempest. Wherever it touches the ground floor it will then start falling continuously in that direction until it hits another block or the opposite wall. So you can build from all four directions and try to fit the blocks into place.

If you place a shape that doesn’t quite make it onto the board, where a piece of it is still hanging onto the wall it came from, then that wall turns red and you won’t be able to move shapes over that wall anymore. You die when all 4 walls are red. Basically it’s like hitting the top of the tower in regular Tetris, but here you have 4 chances. The main board is much smaller though so it’s easy to accidentally misplace a shape. Also when a wall is blocked it increases the difficulty since you can’t place anything from that direction anymore. The red walls do go away after a while though, I don’t know if it’s after a certain amount of blocks have been placed or if you have to delete a few rows first.

There’s also an increase in speed the higher the level you reach. There’s a total of 5 difficulty stages, each stage has a different environment picture to the right and an increase in speed. The last one on stage five is quite funny! It’s a programmer with a beard, with a computer screen containing the same image in the same image in the same image and so forth XD
I wonder if it’s meant to be Alexey??

You can also choose three various difficulty levels. The first one has regular Tetris blocks, and a few that only consists of two squares that are easy to place. The third one has really difficult pieces like stairs and plus-shapes. See examples of the pieces in the Stage 1 picture..

There’s also two various movement modes. One makes the movement of the block go all around 360° with just holding the left or right buttons on the keyboard, the other mode forces you to switch between up and down buttons on the left and right wall and left and right buttons on the upper and lower walls.. this is difficult, I prefer having it go all the way around with the push of just one button..

Anyway, here’s a video to give you an idea of what the gameplay looks like ^_^ I’m not sure if this game has been ported on other systems or if any similar games have been made. Please do let me know if you know of something that is like this one (and not BlockOut! ;)).

You should seriously play Welltris if you’re into puzzle games :D

You should seriously Play: Yume Penguin Monogatari (Famicom)

Yume Penguin MonogatariYume Penguin Monogatari is a platform/shooter game by Konami for the Famicom. This game was only released in Japan, and I can understand why with it’s bizarre story!
You play as Penta, a chubby penguin who has lost his girlfriend Penko to a cool penguin with dark shades, and he needs to win her back!

Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot start
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot stealing!Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot map

In this game you don’t have a life bar and there is no way to die on the stages, but there’s a fitness bar, showing Penta’s current obesity status! Penko’s new boyfriend is sending out troops of enemies to throw foods at Penka. If something hits him he automatically eats it and becomes a bit more fat! When you reach the fattest phase he can hardly move and his only attack is to throw himself on his belly and wiggle around! lol
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - belly rolling Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot squash!
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot enemies
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot waaaaah
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - drowning Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot fatso walking
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot flying fatFamicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot fat flyer

You can find fitness drinks around the stages that will get Penka to Shape Up! When you’re less obese you can kick enemies, and if you get really fit you can shoot out the japanese letter PO (ポ) from your mouth “PO PO PO” ^_^

Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot jump
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot shape up
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot kick
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot puking on seal

If you reach the end of the stage and your fitness bar is pink, you will have to replay the stage, because Penta was too fat for his ex to take him back! This is just hilarious! :D However, if he’s fit enough (when the meter is blue) he will begin to win her over and you get to go to the next stage. You have unlimited tries (as far as I know) on each stage.
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - blinkingFamicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - eating

The second stage is a shooter, once again you will have to get fit and avoid flying apples and rise balls (onigiri) that the enemies will chuck at you. You will reach a boss at the end of the stage, when you shoot him you’ll get fitness drinks, but he will also constantly shoot food at you. Even if you beat him you will still have to be fit to be able to continue on to the next stage. If you’re obese you’ll just have to replay the stage again.

Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot flying
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot giant pig
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot pig boss
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - crying

There’s  various stages in this game, both platform and shooter stages. It’s really funny and obscure! The music is great, just what you would expect from an 8-bit Konami game :) I love how the feeling of the controls change with Penta’s various obesity phases, it’s fast and easy when you’re fit and really slow and troublesome when you’re  obese, your attacks also change. It’s brilliant! You should Seriously Play this game! :D
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - ouchieFamicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot KUZOOO! Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot boss 3 Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot boss 3 eating Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot cake boss Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot boss 4 Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - jumpingFamicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot final boss Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot yay


! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! SPOLER ALERT ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! 

When you beat the game you will get to fly away with your girlfriend. She will take you back and you will get a kiss and start blushing.. after that you sit under a tree under the star sky and then Penko turns around and starts eating and gets OBESE!! irony ^_^ lol
Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - flyingFamicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot final Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - screenshot final couple

Famicom - Yume Penguin Monogatari - fatso

You should seriously Play: Spin Pair (PC Engine)

Seriously Play are games that I think you Seriously Should Play! In this post I will re-visit a game I wrote about a while ago, but only briefly, namely Spin Pair for PC Engine!

Spin Pair_Spin Pair is an HU Card game, so you don’t need the CD unit or a duo to play it. It’s a puzzle game in the style of Tetris or Columns where you have shapes falling down, which you can flip or move left or right. However, in Spin Pair the shapes are very different and it makes the game more complex. Not only can you switch places of the pair of shapes falling down, but with the second button you can also rotate the contents of these two shapes! So basically what you need to do is get half a shape to fill up the opposite half of a shape in the same type/colour.
spin pair shapes

There is also another aspect of Spin Pair that I really like. If you have shapes of the same colour/type lining up horizontally in the same row and you remove ONE, then ALL of them will disappear! This makes for a great way of being able to plan ahead and arrange your shapes so that you can easily remove them all in one drop ^_^
0 row disappearing spin pair pc engine 01 row disappearing spin pair pc engine

Another trick I’ve learned is that you can separate the pair that is falling down, if you get the first one to land on a higher row then you are free to move the remaining shape to the side and also rotate it :D
3 split 1 pc engine spin pair3 split 2 pc engine spin pair

There’s a story mode you can play, where each level gets a little bit harder. You will have to remove certain amounts of each shape, and this number will increase for each stage, also the amount of shapes will increase making it much more difficult since you will have to survive longer. You’re not always lucky to get the shapes you need either.
03 amounts of shapes spin pair pc engine02 amounts of shapes pc engine spin pair

Each stage also has new shapes, they go from being quite normal shapes like squares, triangles and circles to really complex shapes.
11 stage 1 shapes  pc engine spin pair 21 stage 6 shapes  pc engine spin pair

Allt he different shapes represent various object. Everything from animals to robots and vehicles. Sometimes it can be hard to know which one it is you’re lacking. Since you can rotate the content of the shapes in four different directions it’s easy to make mistakes.
04 shapes 1 05 shapes 2

Once in a while the game will speed up, making it more difficult, and the only way to get it to slow back down is to remove shapes!

There is an endless mode instead of story mode where you just play to see for how long you can survive. It starts off easy with few objects and then increases. There is also a 2 player mode where you battle each other. Every time you remove a row with several shapes of the same type your opponent will get punished, having a pair of 3 or 4 objects falling down in their next move.
4 battle mode pc engine spin pair 5 battle mode pc engine spin pair 6 battle mode pc engine spin pair 7 battle mode pc engine spin pair9 battle mode punish pc engine spin pair 10 battle mode punish pc engine spin pair

Already from the start I really liked this puzzle game, but I found it to be quite difficult. The more I played it though the better I got at it. Now I’ve managed to beat the story mode and it’s still a lot of fun to play! The final stage comes as a surprise with the words “COME ON BLACK WIZERD!!” lol… and then you have to remove loads of the same shape but in different colours, and you’ll see two cute little wizards fighting with their broomsticks.
24 come on black WIZERD  pc engine spin pair25 final stage  pc engine spin pair

I recommend anyone who’s into puzzle game to try this little gem out. The music is good, the animations are cute, it’s a challenge and most of all very different! You should Seriously Play it! :D

spinpair ending

30 fin pc engine spin pair