Meteos Astro Blocks is a spinoff sequel game to the original Meteos game, technically making it the second entry in the series, however it is commonly disregarded for Meteos Online, and is sometimes considered a spinoff. It was also the first entry that allowed Meteos to be slid sideways at all.
Though the game can no longer be attained, it is possible to run it in a proper emulator.
Meteos Astro Blocks, though maintaining the core mechanics of Meteos (such as Meteos igniting and being propelled upwards off of the screen upon a successful match), functions somewhat differently. Instead of Meteos (referred to as "blocks" during gameplay" being slid up and down within their columns, they must be swapped with any adjacent Meteos that would create a match; otherwise, they will not move. A single Meteo on the top of a stack can also be slid left or right.
The classic Meteo-swapping rules could be unlocked for use in normal gameplay after completing Star Quest.
Items could also be unlocked and used throughout Star Quest, as well. Items could be activated by matching them with two other Meteos, functioning like a "wild card", in this regard.
Meteos Astro Blocks was host to a variety of modes, including two unique modes that have never made an appearance since.
- Star Quest, which was essentially Meteos Astro Blocks' version of Star Trip, tasking the player with competing various missions based on several possible game modes;
- Shoot, simply requiring the player to launch a target amount of blocks.
- Timed, which functioned identically to Shoot, except the goal must be reached within the time limit.
- A unique mode exclusive to Astro Blocks, Puzzle required that the player clear the screen of Meteos within a certain number of moves. Though it was part of Star Quest, it could also be played outside of said mode. This mode could be unlocked for play outside of Star Quest by completing the first puzzle on Earth.
- Boss is another mode exclusive to Star Quest. In this mode, a creature would patrol the top of the screen, and the player would have to launch Meteos into it, or use Cross Bombs to blast it with a laser. Once the boss took enough damage, it would be defeated, and the player would receive a Power Crystal as a reward. Bosses would become more difficult as the game went on, utilizing a variety of attacks to impede the player and attempt to fill their grid with Meteos.
- http://www.ign.com/articles/2007/01/17/meteos-astro-blocks-review - IGN review of Meteos Astro Blocks.