By in large my Switch has been used to play exactly three things over the past few months: Mario Kart, Tetris, and Animal Crossing. This weekend, those last two are combining together in an Animal Crossing Maximus Cup within Tetris 99. If you “win” the competition you score the Animal Crossing theme forever within the Tetris app, and I’m here to tell you that it’s a thing you want, even if you don’t play Animal Crossing.
Tetris 99 is a free download with a Nintendo Online subscription, so if you’ve been playing Animal Crossing online then you can download Tetris 99 for free. Do that.
The Animal Crossing theme is essentially a skin over the existing game, complete with Animal Crossing sound effects and that relaxing background music from the game. It’s available just this weekend if you don’t win it forever. I played it a bit yesterday and could almost feel my blood pressure dropping with each game. The combo of Tetris and Animal Crossing jams is pretty great, at least it is for me.
If you’re not familiar, Tetris 99 is a battle-style came where you essentially play Tetris against 98 other people to try to reach “Tetris Maximus.” Depending on how good you are, and how good the people you’re playing against are, games typically last anywhere between a few seconds and around two or three minutes.
During the pandemic, I’ve personally found it to be a nice break between tasks. When I get frustrated with what I’m working on I’ll take a break for a few minutes to play a game. Since the games are so short, it’s an option that lets me play and disconnect briefly without getting sucked into something more time consuming (like working on my island).
The “Maximus Cup” is less a competition against others and more a personal competition to gather 100 points over the course of the weekend.
You get points for every game you play in. If you manage to come in first in a Tetris match then you’ll get the 100 points immediately. Second place gets 50 points in the competition and 3rd 30. After that, it scales slowly down in groups of 10 or 20 until you get to 99th place, which gets 1 point. I consider myself “good” at Tetris and getting to the 100 took me around 7 games. It’s cumulative, so you could technically get there coming in last place 100 times, although I think even the worst players should be able to do better than that.
Once you get to 100 you’ll unlock the Animal Crossing theme within the game forever, so you can use it again down the line. I’m pretty sure at this point it’s going to be my default for a bit. You also play with the theme in the tournament, so if you try it and hate it you can abort without wasting time racking up the 100 points.
Nintendo has done a number of similar tournaments in the past where you can win a new theme. My fave before this has been Ring Fit, which provides a pretty upbeat soundtrack to the game. At a time when a lot of us are a little on edge; however, you really can’t beat those relaxing Nook tunes. If you have a Nintendo online subscription you owe it to yourself to give it a try this weekend.