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Tetris may be the perfect game, but the beauty of its play is woefully ephemeral. Worse, the lack of a consistent and robust system for recording and annotating individual tetromino drops has, for decades, stunted serious scholarship.

The problem is clear. Now, Tim Hwang and I have proposed a solution. Presenting1 TETRIS-SYTEM, being a recording method for matches of the puzzle-game.


The notation may feel unfamiliar at first, but even a novice Tetris player will quickly get the hang of it. We hope that one day Tetris scholars, like composers flipping through the sheet music of a symphony, will be able to reconstruct the movements and interplay in their mind’s eyes.

  1. Yes, Tim presented it two weeks ago. I agreed to a press embargo for that duration.