Teen Crashes Tetris And Gets A Surprise Meeting With The Game’s Creator

By Dragana S January 9, 2024

Thirteen-year-old Willis Gibson, or Blue Scuti in the gaming world, achieved what was impossible and crashed the original Tetris game—spending hours daily piecing together virtual tiles. A shy teen, Willis initially posted a video on his YouTube page showcasing his victory after about 38 minutes of playing Tetris.

In the video, he expresses excitement and disbelief as the game crashes at the notorious kill screen. The achievement caught the attention of Tetris Co.. In a surprise interview with NBC News through Zoom, Gibson had the opportunity to meet Tetris creator Alexey Pajitnov and the company’s founder and chairman, Henk Rogers.

Image source:  aGameScout/Youtube

Willis, who hails from Stillwater, Oklahoma, expressed his awe and gratitude during the interview, stating that he never thought he would be able to speak with such personalities in the gaming world. His accomplishment was acknowledged by Maya Rogers, CEO of Tetris, who congratulated Willis on his “extraordinary accomplishment” and described it as a feat that defies the preconceived limits of the legendary game.

Despite Pajitnov maintaining that the game is unbeatable and emphasizing that Willis crashed the program rather than the game itself, the teenager dedicated his Tetris victory to his late father, who had supported his passion for gaming. Willis’s mother, Karin Cox, noted that his father would have been proud, often sharing with others how skilled his son was at Tetris.

Willis, a student at Stillwater Junior High, says he was attracted to Tetris because of its simplicity. He further states that although the game is easy to pick up, it can be challenging to be good at it. He employs a technique called “rolling” to enable faster movements. His victory in crashing Tetris is just one of his many achievements in the gaming world. In October, he placed third at the Portland, Oregon world championships. He is also the world record holder for Tetris on Gameboy.

Image source: Willis Gibson via AP

The Zoom interview captured Pajitnov’s amazement at Willis’s accomplishment, with the game’s creator acknowledging the feat’s difficulty among the Tetris players’ community. While the crash may result from the game’s limitations, Willis’s achievement has resonated as a groundbreaking moment in the realm of Tetris, sparking anticipation for the game’s future.