Tetris’ First Western Grand Master Crowned
Say hello to the first person to ever reach a Grand Master status in Tetris outside of Japan and watch his skills in action.
Kevin Birrell gained a good following during his Tetris playtime on Awesome Games Done Quick earlier this year and now he's back and faster than ever. Polygon reports that the Tetris aficionado has been playing seriously for 8 years and has finally achieved the game's highest possible status, Grand Master.
If you're wondering what the hubbub is all about, here's the gist of it -- Grand Master status isn't something you achieve every day (or every year for that matter). In order to get a "GM" or Grand Master status, you need to achieve the MasterM ranking four times in your seven most recent games. In other words, you have to blow up 999 pieces, achieve a certain grading and do it within a certain time frame. Basically, you have to beat the game four times, which includes beating the last level when the credits roll and all of your pieces go invisible. After you've finished all that, you're not done, because you have to qualify for the Grand Master promotional exam and then you have to beat that as well.
"I can't believe I did it," Birrell said in a Tweet after he had accomplished this feat. "Somehow it doesn't feel possible, but finally it's done! Now to actually get a GM with a fast time!"
Birrell seems pretty ambitious. I'm relatively sure that, after 8 years, reaching Grand Master status alone would have been enough for me. We'll just have to keep up-to-date with Birrell's live streams and see if he becomes the world's second Grand Master outside of Japan as well.