From the website:
GTetrinet is a client program for the popular Tetrinet game, a multiplayer tetris game that is played over the internet. (If you don’t know what Tetrinet is, check out tetrinet.org)
When I started writing these reviews, I swore that I wouldn’t review any Tetris clones. However, I felt that this project not only warranted extra attention, but is also
very addictive, and a lot of fun.
As yet another first, I’ve had to change the categories for this review, as the standard ones I’ve been using previously really didn’t apply to this type of program. So here’s the new layout and breakdown.
Installing – 8 of 10
Requirements for this client are: Gnome 2.0 or higher, GTK+ 2.0, ESD, and standard Gnome libraries. Other compatible clients are available for *nix, Windows and Mac OSX. For this review, installation was done
Very easy install, using the standard ./configure, make & make install. No installer that I could find, but as long as you have a fairly current Gnome environment, you shouldn’t have any problems.
Sound – 5 of 10
Sound is supported through ESounD and playmidi or TiMidity++. You do have the option to compile without sound support, if you’re so inclined. Considering the minimal sounds included, it’s really not necessary, and I eventually recompiled to remove sound support.
Custom audio commands can be entered in the Preferences menu to play midi music, if it is included. Due to this being a Tetris type game, I didn’t see that sounds were really required. The fact that they were
included speaks volumes to the developer’s desire for a complete feature list. Feel free to disable this one, you won’t miss it.
Interface – 9 of 10
The interface for GTetrinet is amazingly well laid out. There are basically 2 primary sections that you will use on a regular basis, and one that you may want to check now and again. We’ll start with the Partyline.
The Partyline tab is essentially a builtin IRC client. From here you can chat with other players, join various different game channels, or gloat about your latest victory. Most standard IRC commands work on various Tetrinet servers.
The next important tab is the Playing Fields tab. When a game starts, you should find yourself here automagically. This tab is where the magic happens, where you display amazing feats of dexterity, or get
your ass handed to you on a platter. Displays of all your opponent’s playing fields are here as well, so you can have an idea of how you’re faring against them.
The remaining tab on the interface is the Winlist. As you win games, you accumulate points. The point values you earn vary based on performance, the number of opponents, and various other options as
well. Once you have played for a while, you may eventually reach the winlist, which is just a leaderboard to show you who has the highest scores. Not vital information all the time, but interesting to check on
the odd occasion.
This is a very easy interface to master, and even novice players should have no difficulty finding their way around.
Gameplay – 8 of 10
Gameplay is surprisingly fast, as it seems most of the people I’ve been playing against have significantly more experience playing than I do. To start this game and assume it’s just Tetris is suicide. Competition
is fierce, and opponents can take you out before you know what has happened.
First things first. The basic game isTetris, but with a twist. As you accumulate lines, they can build up on your opponent’s playing fields. Usually this requires at least 2 lines or more at a time. Also,
there are Special blocks that can be used to help you out of a jam, or to put your opponent at a disadvantage. There are several types of these Specials; I won’t list them all, but you can find more
Overall – 8 of 10 Tuxes
If I had a dime for every person I got playing this recently… well, I’d have about 50 cents, but that’s not the point. This game is terribly addictive, and I recommend you not play it unless you have a lot of time on your hands, a fair amount of patience, and some small desire to get revenge against those who Blockquake you on a frequent basis. Go download it and try for yourself.