4-Tris

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Follow this link for info about the review system. 1 = Terrible, 5 = Awesome!

It's not Tetris, but it is. An excellent game. It is also the first homebrew release for the Intellivision actually released in cartridge format.

4-TrisGraphics: 4
Sound: 5
Replay Value: 5
Notes: 1-player game; Easter Egg
Screen Shots

4-Tris is a fabulous game. The gameplay is reminiscent of Tetris (that should be obvious from the name ;-) so if you like Tetris, you should like this game. All of the mind-numbing addictiveness is there, and the graphics are all they need to be. A nice touch is the use of special new fonts for the score and other status information. And the soundtrack is superb! For those of you who tire of it eventually, you can disable the music at any point in the game.

Other handy features include a 'Next Piece' preview and a sound test screen accessible from the startup screen. If you watch closely, you'll notice a nice touch on the title screen - the copyright date scrolls from 1979 to 2000. I'll leave it as an exercise to the reader to decide why these dates are relevant. I can say that you will find yourself spending waaaay too much time playing this game. Best Score: 505720 [Level 11, 104 Lines, Start Level: 1]




ROM At least five ROM variations exist in cartridge format.
Box Not sure if there was a Philly Classic variation of the box. So far, four variations have been found.
Manual Five variants have been identified.
Overlays Four different overlay variations are known to exist.
Label To date, four labels have been recorded.
Easter Eggs Plenty of Easter eggs exist. Only IntelliJoe knows them all!




A total of four 4-Tris box variants have been documented.

Image Vendor Part Number Year Origin Description
4-Tris Box (Zbiciak Electronics JZ01) Zbiciak Electronics JZ01 2001 Texas Hand-made boxes, individually numbered. Personal copies are numbers 002 and 008. Copy 008 has an extra protector flap on the box tab that 002 does not (if memory serves).
4-Tris Box (Zbiciak Electronics JZ01-SE) Zbiciak Electronics JZ01-SE 2001 Texas Hand-made boxes for the Philly Classic release; individually numbered and autographed. Image courtesy of the Intellivision Library.
4-Tris Box (Intelligentvision 9111-2004) Intelligentvision 9111-2004 2004 U.S.A. Intelligentvision 2005 release box design by Roger Matthews; personal copy is serial number 012; opens on bottom flap, cart centered
4-Tris Box (Left Turn Only LTO-02) Left Turn Only LTO-02 2007 U.S.A. Left Turn Only 2007 release. Part number is followed by the serial number on a hologram sticker in the format LTO-02-NNN. Image courtesy of the Intellivision Library.




There are at least five different versions of the 4-Tris ROM released in cartridge format, as follows:

  • Philly Classic 2001 Release (first run, v1.12?) (Source: Joe Zbiciack)
  • Philly Classic 2001 Release (second run, v1.13?) (Source: Joe Zbiciack)
  • Regular Zbiciack Electronics Release (first run, v1.14) (Source: Joe Zbiciack)
  • Intelligentvision 2005 re–release
  • LTO 2007 re–release

The Philly Classic releases were specifically for attendees of the 2001 Philly Classic convention. I hope to be able to acquire better scans of the box, manual, label, and overlays of this release to put up on this page. The Philly Classic release had special documentation as well as a customized title screen.

Philly Classic Release Title Screen
(Image courtesy of Joe Zbiciak)

According to the author, many of the changes between ROMs are 'small tweaks', such as some code optimization and a fix to an Easter egg. Most important are changes to the built-in self-test. There are also differences between my copy of the cart (Regular release, second run, v1.14) and the ROM image I've got (v1.1), as the hidden Pong game on my cart is in color, while the ROM image version is black & white. See the Easter Eggs section for more about the Pong Easter egg.

Pong Match in Progress Pong Score

Since 4-Tris has been distributed for some time on the web for free, the actual number of versions of the ROM available is unknown. The revisions referred to here are specifically the ones that shipped on actual physical cartridges. If anyone who owns this cartridge from one of the other releases would like to let me know which ROM version they've got, please do so.





A total of five 4-Tris manual variants have been documented.

Image Vendor Part Number Year Origin Description
4-Tris Manual (Zbiciak Electronics JZ01) Zbiciak Electronics JZ01 2001   Standard version of the manual
4-Tris Manual (Zbiciak Electronics JZ01-SE) Zbiciak Electronics JZ01-SE 2001 U.S.A. Special Philly Classic 2001 version of the manual. Image courtesy of the Intellivision Library.
4-Tris Manual (Intelligentvision Rev. B 9111-2004) Intelligentvision Rev. B 9111-2004 2004 U.S.A. Special CGE 2005 edition of the manual, of which only 20 were made; full-color manual on different stock than standard IntelligentVision release; includes errata slip
4-Tris Manual (Intelligentvision Rev. C 9111-2004) Intelligentvision Rev. C 9111-2004 2004 U.S.A. High-gloss, full-color manual; standard IntelligentVision release
Image not available. Left Turn Only N/A None   LTO 2007 release.




A total of four 4-Tris overlay variants have been documented.

Image Vendor Part Number Year Origin Description
4-Tris Overlay (Zbiciak Electronics JZ01) Zbiciak Electronics JZ01 2001 U.S.A. Standard version
4-Tris Overlay (Zbiciak Electronics JZ01-SE) Zbiciak Electronics JZ01-SE 2001 U.S.A. Philly Classic 2001 version. Image courtesy of the Intellivision Library.
4-Tris Overlay (Intelligentvision 9111-JZ01) Intelligentvision 9111-JZ01 2001 U.S.A. IntelligentVision 2004 release
4-Tris Overlay (Left Turn Only) Left Turn Only N/A 2007   Left Turn Only 2007 release; image courtesy of the Intellivision Library




A total of four 4-Tris label variants have been documented.

Image Vendor Part Number Year Origin Description
4-Tris Label (Zbiciak Electronics) Zbiciak Electronics N/A 2001   Standard version of the game label included the serial number of the game, so technically, each is unique; © 2001 JMRZ lower left, serial number lower right
4-Tris Label (Zbiciak Electronics) Zbiciak Electronics N/A 2001   Special Philly Classic version of the game label included the serial number of the game, so each is unique; serial number lower left; Philly Classic logo in right half, game name in left half; need better scan!
4-Tris Label (Intelligentvision) Intelligentvision N/A None   Standard IntelligentVision 2004 release label
Image not available. Left Turn Only N/A None   Left Turn Only 2007 release label; presume this release used standard Mattel cartridge shells




Title Screen Title screen scrolls through the years up to 2000 and plays music from The Nutcracker. Some get tired of the tunes, but I enjoy 'em.
Game Screen Nifty fonts and animated scoring keep the game screen interesting.
Sound Test Screen You can test various sounds and so forth here. Seeing references to web addresses and email in an Intellivision game is priceless.





Title Screen Easter Egg

Credit: Joe Zbiciak

Right or Left Controller: Press and hold: [6],[9]
Press Reset
Easter Egg: The title screen shows a message from Joe.

Joe Says "HI!" Title Screen

Hidden Game Easter Egg

Credit: Joe Zbiciak

Left Controller: Press right on disk
Right Controller: Press and hold: [5]
Press Reset
Easter Egg: You get a hidden game - Pong!.

Pong Match in Progress Pong Score

Diagnostic Test Easter Egg

Credit: Joe Zbiciak

Right or Left Controller: Press and hold: [1]
Press Reset
Easter Egg: The cartridge enters a ROM self-test (not pictured).




If you find new, contradictory, or other information you wish to share, please let me know!