The port of the classic Game Boy edition of Tetris is to be pulled from the Nintendo 3DS eShop at the end of 2014, according to a tweet from Nintendo UK. Dutch writer Daan Koopman noted in another tweet that Tetris: Axis, released for 3DS in 2011, is also disappearing from the shop at the same time.
Nintendo has not yet released a statement explaining the removal. Destructoid speculates that it could be related to a licensing issue, and/or Ubisoft’s recent release of Tetris Ultimate, which is available for download on 3DS, among other platforms. Both Tetris: Axis and the Game Boy Tetris can still be purchased until the end of the month, and will remain available for download once bought.
Tetris was first released for Game Boy in 1989, bundled with the handheld’s initial North American release. Because of this prominent tie-in to Nintendo’s groundbreaking first handheld, Tetris was one of the most widely played titles for the original Game Boy and its immediate successors.
The ubiquity of Tetris among early Game Boy owners is similar to what would later happen when Wii Sports was packaged with Nintendo’s original Wii console in 2006. The 3DS port of the Game Boy Tetris was added to the eShop in 2011. Tetris: Axis was developed by Hudson Soft for 3DS, released for retail in 2011 and as a download in 2013.
Since the its first release in 1984, Tetris has been ported in some form to nearly every device that can play games, along with being the subject of multiple, large-scale, public performances. The game’s original, Soviet designer, Alexey Pajitnov, told IGN in a 2009 interview that the Game Boy version was his favorite, citing how closely it hewed to his original