It was #5 on G4’s Top 100 Video Games of All-Time countdown, and has been consistently ranked as one of the top games of all-time by IGN, EGM, and gamers of all ages.
It’s Tetris, and it’s turning 29 this week. Yes, Alexey Pajitnov’s incredibly addictive puzzle game baby is ready to start freaking out about the future because it’s almost 30.
Tetris combines the quick reaction time and coolness under pressure of video games with several aspects of puzzlesolving to create a marvelous puzzle game experience.
Firstly, you have the improvisation and adaptability necessary for other tile-placement puzzle games like Scrabble (or Words with Friends for the app-savvy in the audience). But utilizing pieces very similar to those in a pentominoes puzzle — as I discussed a few weeks ago — you also have a spatial puzzle aspect reminiscent of a Brick by Brick.
(FYI, here’s a sample puzzle, provided by our pals at pennydellpuzzles.com.)
From scientific studies linking gameplay with lessened post-traumatic stress to utterly inspired pranks turning buildings into playable surfaces, Tetris has left an indelible mark on both puzzle culture and pop culture. (Plus, I suspect it’s made us all a little better at packing up the car for long trips.)
Happy Birthday, Tetris.