A teenage boy from Oklahoma claims to be the first person in history to ‘beat' the classic version of Tetris on the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), 34 years after its release.
For those wondering if it is possible to “beat” Tetris, the answer is yes and no. When Soviet engineer Alexei Pajitnov created the game in 1984, he didn't program the ending. However, in 2021 it was revealed that if a player reached a high enough level cause the game to crash.
This has only been achieved by artificial intelligence software – until now.
Willis Gibson, 13, posted a video on his YouTube channel Monday showing his Tetris story maker game. For 38 consecutive minutes, he arranged the Tetris blocks into horizontal lines as the speed of the game increased.
When he reached level 157, which was once impossible, the game crashed and crashed. The blocks did not come anymore. He reached the kill screen, effectively beating the game.
The video shows the 13-year-old phenom gasping in surprise.
“Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God. Yes!” Gibson exclaimed, holding his head in his hands. ‘I'm going to pass. I can't feel my fingers. I can't feel my hands.'
Gibson is called Blue Scuti online. In the description of the YouTube video, he wrote, “When I started playing this game, I never expected to ever crash or beat the game.”
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He claims his run also broke world records for total points, level and finish lines.
Nintendo has yet to publicly comment on the boy's performance.
Gibson has participated in several gaming tournaments and finished third in the 2023 Classic Tetris World Championship.
So how did he do it? And why did it take so long for humans to beat Tetris?
A few years ago, hardcore Tetris players believed that it was impossible to get past level 29 of the game. Ars Technica Accounts that make Gibson's achievement of reaching level 157 all the more remarkable.
This is because at level 29 the game reaches its maximum speed. At this point, when players hold down left or right on the NES D-pad—which controls the side-to-side movement of Tetris blocks—the blocks move at such a speed that they fall to the bottom of the screen. They can bypass the game board.
This means that players cannot place blocks exactly where they want, resulting in the blocks piling up until they reach the top of the screen, resulting in “game over”.
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In 2011, professional gamer Thor Åkerlund developed a technique called hypertap, in which the player quickly flicks their finger up and down on the NES D-pad to move Tetris blocks faster than simply tapping and tapping. using hypertaping, Åkerlund was able to reach level 30.
But this technique could only take players so far. It would take another 10 years before he reached level 40 using a new gaming innovation: Rolling.
Rolling involves the use of players A few fingers to hold the bottom of the NES controller In quick succession, pushes the controller into the player's other hand, which presses the D-pad.
In other words, instead of pressing the D-pad, players tap the controller with their finger. This allows the player to register up to five taps on the D-pad very quickly, moving blocks more efficiently.
With all of these techniques and hand-specific names that Protetri players use, it seems that this e-sport is more physically demanding than one might first expect.
Now that Willis has shown that it is possible for a human to reach the Tetris kill screen, it may only be a matter of time until what is believed to be the ultimate Tetris achievement is unlocked. At Tetris level 255, the game goes to level 0 according to Ars Technica.
If the player can prevent the game from crashing before level 255, he can reach the final limit of Tetris.
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