In this video [via Kottke], John Green explains why competitive players are suddenly getting much better at Tetris despite the number of players being much smaller than in its heydey: "a group of enthusiasts built spaces both online and off that allowed people to connect with each other over what is usually a very solitary hobby and because small groups of deeply passionate people can often be more productive than large groups of casually interested people."
The improvements apply to a specific implementation of Tetris (8-bit Nintendo) and reflect deep awareness of the technical environment. Read the rest
In this clip, 16-year-old Joseph Saelee defeats Tetris seven-time world champ Jonas Neubauer to become the new Tetris Tsar or whatever they call it. It's mesmerizing! Alex Walker writes:
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It was a story straight out of a shonen anime: the new up and comer and the king at the top of the summit, looking down below at the competition.
The second and third game of the series also went completely to the wire. Saelee amassed a lead of more than 160,000 points at one stage by the second game, but had to tap out after things went haywire in the 27th level. Neubauer, behind in points, carried on but went 25 pieces without a long bar - and consequently couldn't get the points needed to catch up.
Some models of Russian GAZelle Next commercial vans and trucks have Tetris integrated into the instrument cluster as an Easter egg. Here's the Google translation of the YouTube poster's instructions of how to bring up the game:
1) Turning the ignition on
2) Start a car
3) Three times the right turn signal
4) Two times distant
5) Five times on the clutch
6) raise the speed to 2000
and at that moment we light the arrow to the left
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These bags of Tetris-branded magnetic tetrominoes don't look much good (it's obviously just a rubbery sheet with the shapes stamped out) but they are dirt cheap (49 for $9) and the street (you) will find its own uses. (very previously)
Are there any good magnetic tetrominoes? As in: each "pixel" a cube rather than millimeter-thick. Read the rest
The TS100 was already an incredible gadget, a miniature precision soldering iron, a cult product whose magical powers I toyed with upon discovering the wonderful world of assembly-required mechanical keyboards. And now you can play Tetris on it, proving not only that God exists but that He loves us. [via] Read the rest
For lots of commercial games, being able to spatter the walls with viscera or to leave a mess of smashed barrels and crates behind is part of the abandon. But aren't people often just as driven by the urge to clean up? Read the rest
Ecstasy Of Order: The Tetris Masters is a 2011 documentary telling the story of Robin Mihara, a "Tetris superfan" who convened a global Tetris championship in 2010 in Los Angeles, assembling a collection of the greatest Tetris players on earth. The movie's official site has lots more on the event and the documentary, which looks very exciting indeed. Read the rest
Dream of Pixels reverses time on the best game of Tetris you ever had: a grid of blocks lies already complete, and you have to unpack the tetrominoes that fell to create it.
The iOS version is coming out on Thursday, but you can play the prototype—which lacks the full game's beautiful graphics‐for free on the web. At the official website, developers Dawn of Play promise 5 types of play, amazing music, and a "Zen"puzzle mode for people who like to take their time. [via Free Indie Games] Read the rest
I have just ordered this seven-piece reconfigurable Tetris light set, which automatically turns on when all the pieces are stacked together. I bet it sucks; if it does, I'm going to go right ahead and make my own 6ft tall version out of plexiglass squares and LED lamps.
Tetris Constructable Light [Amazon]
UPDATE: Amazon is sold out, but if you're in the EU, Firebox has them in stock! Read the rest
What makes Tetris Tetris? The mobile app explosion threw gasoline on the game's already-numbing history of copyright battles. At Ars Technica, Kyle Orland takes a look at the Tetris Company's endless efforts to kill them. These efforts hinge on a seemingly straightforward question: is Tetris simple enough to be defined by a set of rules (to which copyright cannot apply) or does it qualify as protected expression? Read the rest