We're going to assume you know exactly what Tetris is, so let's jump right into why Tetris DS may be the best version of this seminal falling-block puzzler you've ever played. Aside from the unchanging-but-ever-popular regular game (which is dressed up with some Mario themes), there are five other ways to bust some blocks - a handful of which you can take online.
On the left pair of screen above, you'll see 10 people fighting in Standard mode with just one copy of the game. You can do this with or without the kinds of power-ups the Mario crew throw around: things like line-clearing turtle shells and yellow stars that only give you the long, blue blocks. The Mario Kart lightning bolt even shows up. It makes it so your opponents can't rotate the damn blocks. How cheap is that? You wouldn't think an online, four-player Tetris match could heat up like a skull-thumping deathmatch, but oh, it can.
To the right is what you see while playing single-player Tetris. As you bang away the blocks, Mario runs through some classic levels from the NES days. It's kind of pointless, really. Not obtrusive, but not an essential part of the experience, either. But it's kind of cool, just the same.