A puzzle game that looks like a 3D Tetris game but might not earn that comparison.
The idea of Trenga Unlimited seems neat at face value, as it twists the concept of a 3D Tetris game. While it’s certainly cute, the game never meaningfully clicked with me and after wrapping up the short story mode and spending time with the multiplayer and survival modes, I don’t know if more content could salvage the underlying mechanics.
It begins with a cute little story introduction, where Kate Nemo—the descendant of the legendary Captain—is on a quest to uncover her past in the ocean. Three different worlds with more than 40 levels combined make up the story mode, taking you through a variety of challenges that progressively unlock “buddies” that offer bonuses while playing. Gameplay involves selecting a Tetrimino-esque piece that you can fit into one of the four sides of the puzzle tower. Place a block on every part of a row across the four sides and that row will disappear. The best way to progress is to flawlessly place the different-shaped blocks to avoid overlap, which helps you keep up a combo if you make your choices quickly.
While I appreciate that the difficulty is never that overbearing, it’s relatively easy to cheese your way through levels. Your main concern is running out of oxygen, but as long as you don’t just spam the absolute wrong blocks, this never was that much of a concern. The combo system tries to fight against brute-forcing some stages, but the drive for high scores here was never that fulfilling. You unlock buddies at a steady clip, which gives you more variety in how you can attack levels, whether it’s extending the time you have before your combo meter runs out or keeping your combo alive even if you place a piece wrong.
Beyond the story mode is a versus mode that just involves up to four players trying to get the highest score before time runs out. Additionally, another solitaire mode is essentially a time trial as you try to erase rows as quickly as possible. None of this further deepens the basic mechanics laid out in the story mode and by the end of my time with Trenga Unlimited, it honestly felt way more limited than I had hoped.