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Puyo Puyo Tetris is a simple, cute hybrid of two puzzle game classics

The blobs of Sega's Puyo Puyo series and the tetrominos of the venerable Tetris come together in Sega's appropriately titled Puyo Puyo Tetris, a colorful blend of the two long-running franchises. The marriage of the two action puzzle games appears to work as more than just a clever crossover experiment, based on our hands-on time with the game at Tokyo Game Show.

We played demos of the PlayStation 3 and Nintendo 3DS versions of the game and found them nearly identical in what they offered: a one-on-one battle against an AI opponent, pitting Tetris rules against Puyo Puyo rules.

To be more specific, the gameplay of Puyo Puyo in Puyo Puyo Tetris appears to be simple, classic stuff, at least based on the demos available at TGS. Match four or more similarly colored blobs together and they'll disappear, piling up garbage blocks below your opponent's stack. If you're playing Puyo Puyo, you'll have a preview of the next two pairs of blobs coming your way.

On the Tetris side, players have the option to "hold" a piece, like other modern Tetris games, for later use, and can see the next five pieces on deck. Clear lines — or, preferably, score a tetris — and you'll rain down garbage blocks to your opponent's stack.

Exactly how that will all balance out in the end remains to be seen, but the rules of Puyo Puyo and Tetris are so different, we're curious to see which franchise might offer an advantage.

The presentation of Puyo Puyo Tetris is bright and cheery, with an art style in the vein of Puyo Puyo Fever and its successors. The TGS demo featured three playable characters, Arle, Ringo and Amitie — Carbuncle was there too — and regardless of whether you opted to play Puyo Puyo or Tetris, every character was pulled from the Puyo Puyo series.

What the TGS demo didn't offer was a peek at the crazy "Swap" mode that will have players flipping back and forth between Puyo Puyo and Tetris (or the option to play Tetris on Tetris or Puyo Puyo on Puyo Puyo).

Players will get to sample that puzzle madness when Puyo Puyo Tetris comes to multiple platforms (PlayStation 3, PS Vita, Wii U and Nintendo 3DS) sometime next year.

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