I got into Tetris many years ago through a borrowed NES version. I used to sit in my chair for hours and play and play. I then got my own Gameboy version, and loved that almost as much. Then I really enjoyed Tetris DS and the original Tetris Party on Wiiware a few years ago. Since I no longer have a version in easy access (sold Tetris DS and my girlfriend has my Wii), I decided to get Tetris Party Deluxe on DS.
Tetris Party Deluxe manages to continue the tradition of including original Tetris gameplay with new modes. However since Nintendo created some fantastic modes in Tetris DS, they are omitted and replaced with new original modes here. Sadly I can't say any of them are really more than quick time-wasters. I did like bombliss mode and master mode, but everything else was rather iffy.
The main reason why I picked the game up was to play multiplayer online again. I was extremely disappointed that the game is no longer the same excellent multiplayer matches featured on Tetris DS. It's a long wait to play a match with no special rules, and the items featured in the first option are terrible. They're random, hard to keep track off, and easily abused and misused. My last multiplayer match was against a player with well over 8000 rank points (you start at 5000 and can lose them) and he ended the match in less than a minute. Either he was the best Tetris player in history (and I was really good at Tetris DS) or the game is filled with rampant cheaters. I'm going to assume it was the latter.
While Tetris Party Deluxe tries to spice up classic Tetris with new modes, that alone isn't enough to fully recommend. And the online multiplayer is not ruined, but I would say rather flawed. If you're a hardcore Tetris player I'd say skip this version. But if you're a Tetris newbie, this could be a decent option.
Score: 7 out of 10