Year: 2005
System: PSP

Don’t call Lumines a standard matching tile puzzler. There are elements of it at its core, but there’s a lot more going on underneath the hood here than in most puzzle games. The object here is to form 2x2 square grids; drops blocked can “share” spaces between two forming squares, for instance, for a higher score, but game is governed by the ironclad “timeline” beat that sweeps across the screen in time to the music. (Unsurprising, coming from Rez and Child of Eden creator Tetsuya Mizuguchi.) You’ve got until the next timeline interval to finalize your block’s position, because as soon as it makes its sweep, squares you’ve formed are gone. As with any Mizuguchi game, music is a big part of the trance-like experience, and it really makes a difference in how engrossing this one can be. But don’t take my word for it—check it out yourself.