Phear (Tetrisphear) [Jaguar – Unreleased]

Phear (Tetrisphear) [Jaguar – Unreleased]

Celine as make us to notice about a couple of interesting posts over at NFG Games (you can read them here and here) in which they talk about their visit to CES 1995, where they were able to play Phear.. the Jaguar game that later became  Tetrisphere for the Nintendo 64.

Tetrisphere is a variant on Tetris in which various shapes are shifted across a sphere and destroyed. The objective of the game changes depending on the mode, but generally depends on removing layers of shapes to reach the core of the sphere. [Infos from Wikipedia]

As NFG Games wrote in their posts, it seems that “Nintendo saw it running in Atari’s booth, walked over to the developer and offered $madcash for the rights to it”. A couple of pages from the original Jaguar’s Phear (aka Tetrisphear) brochure can also be see in there. Also Celine found a scan from EGM 98, in which we can see a Phear in-game screen from the early Jaguar version. Other screenshots could be admired in CdConsoles issue 4 and Game Fan issue 5-3.

Thanks to Celine for the contribution!


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13 thoughts on “Phear (Tetrisphear) [Jaguar – Unreleased]

  1. Ross Sillifant

    I personally cannot see this as being this huge loss to the Jaguar, that many vocal supporters of the format make it out to be (and i was a day 1 Jaguar owner in UK).I look at say EDGE’s review of the N64 game:

    Scored 6/10.Reviewer said:’The puzzle game is but 1 genre that the N64 still lacks a steriling example of-Tetrisphere is unlikely to reset the balance, despite some nice touches’.

    Replace N64 with Jaguar and i think media and public in general would have felt same way.Sure, game has it’s fans, but even had it been released on Jaguar, i cannot see it doing much if anything to boost Jaguar’s reputation or sales, at the time.

  2. Ross Sillifant

    Alexey Pajitnov, talking about Tetrisphere:
    ‘This was an awful game by Nintendo (laughs)…it was complicated.But i really enjoyed working on it.It’s a really, really hardcore game.The team i worked with was very hardcore and wanted to make a really difficult game, so they did.Nobody could really realise how to play this game.It was a kind of catastrophe’.

  3. R

    Based on what i can read from the flyer, the game was going to push the system to the breaking point, more so than Skyhammer or Fight for Life combined. 50000+ polygons on the screen, locked at 60fps, kick-ass soundtrack and a really good gameplay (Yup i found people who actually played the game at the Winter CES 1995, but for privacy reasons i won’t say their names).

  4. Ross Sillifant

    Doubt it had to worry about the A.I routines etc Skyhammer was pushing.

    Always felt game would of been more at home on Jaguar, it seemed to go unnoticed on N64, pulling in scores of 6/10 etc.

    Seemed an inconsequential release there.

    jaguar needed a worthy puzzle game to call it’s own.

  5. Ross Sillifant

    In a software development review document dated 1/12/95,Atari have game listed as:

    Due 3/95

    Deal not done yet

    Need to review product.

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