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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

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Tetris: Past, Present, Future
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Gamasutra recently published an interview with Alexey Pajitnov, the creator of Tetris. The addictive puzzle title quickly became one of the most popular puzzle titles ever created. The developer discussed the game's development, it's overwhelming success, and the future of the franchise which includes a multiplayer variant of the block stacking game.

Speaking of multiplayer, obviously the original version of Tetris wasn't multiplayer. Other people came up with ways to make Tetris multiplayer through new versions. Some were good, some were not. Did you ever give that thought yourself?
AP: Oh, absolutely. We are working on multiplayer versions for more than 10 years -- I've been trying to design it. I should admit that we are not quite there yet.

It's interesting because it's such a simple game in terms of its mechanics.
AP: Yeah. It was quite a problem with Tetris that... the game is very intense, you know? If you play on the high level -- and that's where you want to play usually. So, you play on the edge of your abilities, in terms of the speed and reaction, and everything. So, you kind of have no brain resources to observe what the other people are doing.

That's the kind of measured theoretical problem which we need to resolve with multiplayer Tetris. So, if we lower the intensity of personal game playing, we, a little bit, lower the excitement of the game. But if we keep it at the same level, the players don't have resources to really do some kind of multiplayer actions, to observe, to analyze what's going on in the big picture, and adjust their strategy.

So, we have been seated on this problem for a while; that's the brief description of it. But there are still very promising ways to do it, so the version we have now is pretty good. I mean, when you send the garbage in the multiplayer to the other player, it kind of works.

But unfortunately, my dream would be the game, when you could really see what the other people do and take their gameplay and their achievement and their status in the game really in account. That's what the main joy of a multiplayer game is, in my opinion.
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Gamasutra: Tetris Discussion

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