I am the man who arranges the blocks...
Everyone knows Tetris. Whether you pick up a video game controller every day or you never have in your life, the game has entered your mind at least once. Tetris has transcended video gaming itself, having been published by the likes of Nintendo, EA, and more of the biggest industry names while it's been around. The blocks keep falling, and we keep moving them around.
Since Tetris is turning the big 3-0 this year, we thought we'd take a look at what makes Tetris so special. Why is it that we are all fascinated by a game with turning blocks and nothing else to it? There's a surprising amount of strategy to such a simple game, but that's only one of the many reasons we love it. Here's 30 more.
The satisfaction of a 4-line score
Seriously, getting a 4-liner, especially on harder difficulties, is one of the best feelings in all of gaming.
The iconic Tetris song, actually called "Korobeiniki", gets stuck in our heads every time we hear it.
Picture credit: Smooth McGroove
Achieving a high score, then beating that score
Because watching those numbers get higher and higher is quite the badge of honor...
Beating someone else's high score and seeing their despair
...but taking out a friend's high score is even better. Extra points if they're sitting right next to you so you can TASTE THEIR TEARS. (Don't taste their tears, if they even cry.)
Playing it on our Game Boys
We still break out Nintendo's old brick to play Tetris is the most classic way possible. Not many other games make us do that.
The anticipation of watching a piece slowly fall...
Because every little drop sinks our hearts deeper and deeper into our stomachs...
...or speeding up the process when we know it's going to fall right
...unless we know we're golden and we can drop that sucker right into place LIKE A BOSS.
Playing against our friends in multiplayer
What's better than playing Tetris? Playing Tetris head-to-head against other people!
Watching an opponent mess up in multiplayer
There's no greater humiliation than being the guy or gal who moves a piece right before it locks into place in front of a group of friends. Don't be that person.
Playing the rare Tengen version on NES
Not many people have done this, and if you have, cherish every second of it.
We'd argue that this 90-degree line destroyer is the most popular Tetris block of them all.
Seeing Nintendo characters play music when we succeed
Who knew Samus preferred the cello? Also, Mario and Luigi Russian dancing is awesome.
The most famous song isn't the only quality track in the game; Track B is just as memorable.
Picture credit: Smooth McGroove
Playing against our parents in multiplayer (because it's one game they'll actually play)
Mom and Pop aren't picking up the controller to get shot at in Call of Duty, but we bet they will take you on in Tetris.
How do you mix up a classic puzzle game? Turn it into a sphere!
The proper placement of a T-block can mean high scores or early exits. You have to respect that.
The Nintendo-infused Tetris DS
Tetris Adventure starring 8-bit Link? A Tetris/Donkey Kong hybrid? This game is incredible nostalgia.
Learning about Russia while playing a game
How else would we have identified the Kremlin in Moscow if we hadn't seen it as three-year-olds in Tetris?
An even more underrated piece of Tetris music, if only because it can lull you to sleep mid-game.
The straight line block
The four-line combo is just not possible with Mr. Straight here. High scores NEED the straight block.
Being one false move away from Game Over and getting out of it
Digging yourself out of that hole is a tremendous feeling because you get to keep playing!
The "clear a line" sound effect
No matter what version we're playing, that sound is always satisfying.
The feeling of seeing that ONE block you REALLY need finally coming
You wait, and wait, and wait, and FINALLY you get thrown a bone. Awesome!
The box block
The most underrated of all the blocks in our eyes. A perfect square is a perfect piece.
Seeing extra pieces fall on your opponent after a big line break
Nothing makes a combo in multiplayer better than seeing the random pieces fall on the poor bastard next to you.
Tetris Attack on Super NES
It's a little simpler, but it's still Tetris with an even crazier multiplayer.
The creator's badass name. Alexey Pajitnov
Seriously, who wants to mess with this guy? He's the Russian Chuck Norris (sorry Ivan Drago).
"S" stands for sabotage, because this block can do that with one false flip, even more so than the T. Watch out.
The fact that we can play it on any console we can imagine
NES, SNES, Game Boy, Nintendo 64, Xbox 360, PS3, iPhone, Android...the list grows with every new release. Google Glass Tetris, anyone?
The fact that even after 30 years, we still love it.
It never gets old, and it never will get old. We love you, Tetris.
Don't ever change
Tetris is one of those timeless games that people of all ages can and will enjoy. Kids first starting out on their video game voyages might try putting these blocks together before anything else. Older folks watching their children play might ask to join in the fun. Whatever the situation, there's a reason Tetris has been around for as long as it has been. Here's to 30 more wonderful years, Tetris. ! (that's congratulations in Russian).