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Tetris

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Tetris
TetrisNES
Consoles
Electronica 60, IBM PC, ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, Atari ST, Macintosh, Amiga, Apple II, Atari, BBC Electron, Commodore 64, Famicom, J3100, MSX2, Spectrum HoloByte, PC-8801, PC-9801, Sega, Sinclair Spectrum, Tandy, X68000, Game Boy, Game & Watch, Megadrive, NES, Windows, CD-i, IOS

Tetris is a puzzle video game released on a variety of consoles. It's spawned a multitude of variations and semi-sequels, or rather remakes and has been deemed the most popular puzzle video game of all time. The original game was developed by game designer Alexey Pajitnov in 1985 while living in Moscow. The name Tetris is derived from the Russian word for "four".

The game was initially released on multiple consoles though gained much of its popularity when it was ported to the Game Boy (generally as a free first cartridge). When playing the game, tetromoinoes of different shapes and colors will fall from above and will drop to the bottom. The objective is to construct a horizontal line without any gaps, thus depleting that line and earning you points. Once you reach a certain level, the blocks will fall faster and will become harder to manipulate.

Interestingly, if you were to divide the block into four pieces, each of the sets would be identical. This is demonstrated in many of the game's variations where there are four separate blocks in each tetromoinoes.

Due to rights disputes between Nintendo and Elorg, the original games for the Game Boy and NES cannot be re-released.

Gameplay

The gameplay of Tetris involves seven different shaped and colored blocks that fall from the top of the board. Below. As they fall, you are asked not to leave any gaps so that you are able to clear the lines. You're able to clear a line once one, horizontal line is filled with blocks, which will cause it to disappear. The primary objective is to not allow the blocks to raise above the board (classified as "topping out"), which will result in a game over.

The blocks included in the game include I, J, L, O, S, T, and Z. The only block that is capable of ridding of four full lines is the I block, though in the original title only I, J, and L could deplete three (though this has been altered in recent games where you're capable of turning the blocks in such a fashion where they'll fit into an empty place to clear the three lines). The colors of the blocks change with each new variation.

When the blocks are falling, you're allowed to turn it so that it can fit in a particular place. However, while you do this the block itself will continue to fall down. In some versions of the game, you're allowed to keep spinning the block even if it happens to be touching another block, though this will usually only last for a short time if playing in multiplayer mode (for example, in Tetris DS you'll only be allowed to do this for a few spins until it connects). Some critics have said that it breaks the game, seeing as when you're playing on the hardest level you can continue to spin the block until you find the perfect place for it.

To make a block fall faster, you're allowed to press down on the d-pad, though to make it immediately connect with a piece below, you just have to press up on it. In some games, a ghost of the block will be shown below to show the player where it's falling, though this option can usually be turned off for the more advanced players who wish for a greater challenge.

The main goal of the game is to get a high score. There is no way to beat Tetris, as in the end you'll ultimately lose. The more lines to clear, the higher the score you'll get. Getting a Tetris (clearing four lines) will earn you the most points, though performing special moves such as T-Spins will also give you a hefty amount of points as well. The scoring system changes slightly with each new game released.

The Blocks

The blocks have become a popular among most gamers. The L block itself managed to win Gamefaq's 2007 character battle. Each of the seven blocks are present in every Tetris game, though the colors of them change slightly. The tactics of each block usually remain with each new game, with new twists (such as the T-Spin) being added in later games.

I Block
Ipiece
The I block is unarguably the most helpful of the seven blocks. The I block is the only block that is capable of getting rid of four lines, resulting in a Tetris. In Tetris DS' multiplayer mode, the Starman would give you an unlimited amount of I blocks for a short time.
Original
Microsoft
Sega
New Tetris
Tetris Worlds
Tetris DS
Atari
Soviet Mind Game
red red red cyan cyan red red
J Block
Jpiece
The J piece is often times refered to as the reverse L piece, though in the original game's manual it was called simply the J piece. It is among the three pieces that were capable of making three lines disappear
Original
Microsoft
Sega
New Tetris
Tetris Worlds
Tetris DS
Atari
Soviet Mind Game
white magenta blue blue-violet blue yellow orange
L Block
Lpiece
The L piece is among the three pieces that can destroy three lines in the original game, though as mentioned before this would change in future variations where most of them could actually do so. It won the Gamefaqs' 2007 character battle, surprisingly.
Original
Microsoft
Sega
New Tetris
Tetris Worlds
Tetris DS
Atari
Soviet Mind Game
magenta yellow orange magenta orange magenta magenta
O Block
Block
The O piece is a perfect square. It's perfect for getting rid of two lines though can also prove to be a hassel when there are no flat places to put the piece, often requiring to to make an unfortunate gap.
Original
Microsoft
Sega
New Tetris
Tetris Worlds
Tetris DS
Atari
Soviet Mind Game
blue cyan yellow light grey yellow blue blue
S Block
Spiece
The S piece was one of the four original pieces that couldn't clear three lines, though this was changed in future games.
Original
Microsoft
Sega
New Tetris
Tetris Worlds
Tetris DS
Atari
Soviet Mind Game
green blue magenta green green cyan green
T Block
Tpiece
The T Block can be very helpful - it can fit in almost every space that the S and Z blocks can fit into and you'll almost never have a problem with it. Notably it is the only block in which the color of it has been different from each other in the major variations.
Original
Microsoft
Sega
New Tetris
Tetris Worlds
Tetris DS
Atari
Soviet Mind Game
brown grey cyan yellow purple green olive
Z Block
Zpiece
The Z block is similar to the S block though is reversed. Just like the S Block, it is one of the four original pieces that couldn't clear three lines, though this would change in future variations.
Original
Microsoft
Sega
New Tetris
Tetris Worlds
Tetris DS
Atari
Soviet Mind Game
cyan green green red red orange cyan

Music

All music tracks are based on popular Russian songs.

  • Game Boy Type A- the most recognizable track, widely known as the Tetris Theme.
  • NES Type A- a track based on Dance of the Sugarplum Fairy from the Nutcracker Ballet

Reception

The game was phenomenally successful, and has spawned numerous variants on multiple consoles. Tournaments have even been established.

Trivia

Other appearances

See also

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