If you’ve been paying attention to retro video game news, then you’ve surely seen the story about the 13 year old boy who “beat” Tetris for the very first time in its 40 year history.
Blue Scuti‘s incredible Tetris achievement happened during the holiday break, and we had little reason to believe that an achievement in a retro video game would make headline news all over the world two weeks after it happened!
But here we are; mainstream news outlets across the globe have been covering the incredible achievement by a 13 year old Tetris prodigy.
If you somehow missed the media coverage of this triumph, let’s summarize the unique record-setting Tetris achievement.
How To “Beat” Tetris
The NES version of Tetris, which is one of the best selling NES games and is often the focus of competitive Tetris, has reached several milestones where players felt like the game could not be pushed any further.
The first barrier to be broken was the point where human hands could not move the pieces fast enough to offer Tetris a fair fight. This happens at level 29, and was commonly referred to as the “killscreen”.
But thanks to new game play techniques and hours upon hours of practice, players have pushed the game into territory nobody ever expected it to go, including the makers of Tetris themselves.
Players are now able to push NES Tetris to a point where the game’s code actually begins to breakdown. And the game can reach a point that has never been reached by a human player before – the point where Tetris can no longer continue.
Therefore, this is now being considered the true end of the game where a human player can finally beat Tetris in a true sense.
The first person to do this was a 13 year old Tetris prodigy by the name of Willis Gibson, known by his peers as ‘Blue Scuti’.
Blue Scuti has quickly become one of the most notable competitive Tetris players, often in daily competition for highest level and highest score world records.
He was able to push Tetris to its limits and cause the game to crash on December 21st of 2023, making him the first human player to “beat” Tetris.
Obviously, we think this is quite an amazing Tetris feat achieved by Blue Scuti. We are just surprised that the mainstream also thinks so!
Alexey Pajitnov, the legendary Russian programmer who created Tetris, and Henk Rogers, founder of Bullet-Proof Software who secured the first distribution rights for Tetris, both appeared on national television to congratulate Gibson on beating their game.
The wild story behind Pajitnov, Rogers, and Tetris is explored in last years Tetris Movie.
It’s been a wild week for Willis Gibson, with countless news features and articles written about the boy who beat Tetris. He seems quite honored by all of the well-deserved attention and recognition.
But it is the excitement in Blue Scuti’s voice when he becomes the first person in the world to officially beat Tetris that really touches our retro video game hearts.
This is a big win for retro gaming, and we’re proud to count Blue Scuti among the ranks of our retro video game club.
He’s a sweet young boy who loves the same classic video game that we do, and one that has managed to achieve something extraordinary that has never been done in the 40 year history of Tetris.
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Anthony has been a video game lover ever since he can remember. He became a fulltime nomad in 2018, living throughout most of Asia. He focused his passion in retro gaming and began creating a game for the Game Boy Color while living in Nara, Japan during the 2020 pandemic. He is now in Chiang Mai, Thailand, where he spends most of his time gaming, going on long walks and meeting as many stray dogs as possible.