Tetris: The Grand Master

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Tetris: The Grand Master
Tetris The Grand Master 3 flyer.jpg
Arcade flyer for Tetris: The Grand Master 3 - Terror‑Instinct
Publisher(s)Capcom (TGM1)
Psikyo (TGM2)
Taito Corporation (TGM3)
AQ Interactive (Ace)
Composer(s)Shinji Hosoe
Ayako Saso
Platform(s)Arcade,[a] Xbox 360[b]
Release1998 (TGM1)
2000 (TGM2)
2005 (TGM3, Ace)
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer
Arcade systemSony ZN-2 (TGM1)
Psikyo SH2 (TGM2)
Taito Type X (TGM3)

Tetris: The Grand Master (テトリス ザ・グランドマスター, Tetorisu: Za Gurando Masutā) is a series of puzzle arcade games created by Arika.

Released in Japan in August 1998 Tetris: The Grand Master was followed by two sequels, Tetris: The Absolute - The Grand Master 2 in October 2000 (with a Plus version released December 2000) and Tetris: The Grand Master 3 - Terror‑Instinct in March 2005. A spin-off console game, Tetris: The Grand Master Ace was published by AQ Interactive on December 10, 2005 and was a launch title for the Xbox 360's Japan release.


The basic gameplay of Tetris: The Grand Master is similar to that of other Tetris games. The player must move and rotate Tetromino-shaped pieces falling into a well to form horizontal lines, which will then be cleared. During gameplay, the game automatically gives ranks to the player according to their score, starting from 9 up to Grand Master (GM), roughly following the dan ranking system. The game speeds up rapidly, reaching instant gravity and upwards of three tetrominoes per seconds.

Tetris: The Grand Master's gameplay is heavily inspired by its arcade predecessor, Sega Tetris, released 10 years earlier. It uses a modified rotation system, color scheme, and relies heavily on mechanics such as lock delay. Another game which inspired Tetris: The Grand Master is Shimizu Tetris, a fan game which was the first to introduce 20G gravity.

The main goal in Tetris: The Grand Master is to score points, awarding the player a higher grade. The game ends when a player reaches level 999. If the player scored enough points, they will be awarded with the grade S9. To achieve the grade GM, the player must also meet some time requirements during play. If the player tops out before reaching level 999, the game ends, awarding the player the current grade and its "mastering time", the time at which the grade was awarded during gameplay.


Tetris: The Grand Master[edit]

The original game was released in Japanese arcades in August 1998. US, Asia, Europe, Hispanic, and Brazil warning texts were found in the game, suggesting that the game was planned to be released in these countries.[1]

Tetris: The Absolute - The Grand Master 2[edit]

Tetris: The Absolute - The Grand Master 2 was released in 2000, and added additional modes of play. One of these new modes is the Master mode, which extends the classic Tetris: The Grand Master gameplay with larger speed increases, more requirements to achieve the M or GM grades, and an additional challenge when the M rank is achieved where the player must survive the credits roll with the additional handicap of the Tetrominoes turning invisible upon locking. Additional modes include a more casual Normal mode, a Versus mode enhanced with item battles, and a two-player co-op mode.

Tetris: The Absolute - The Grand Master 2 Plus[edit]

Tetris: The Absolute - The Grand Master 2 Plus added additional modes such as TGM+, which adds rising garbage blocks to the gameplay, and T.A. Death where the game begins at 20G (instant gravity) and every other aspect of the game also speeds up steadily.

Tetris: The Grand Master 3 - Terror‑Instinct[edit]

Tetris: The Grand Master 3 - Terror‑Instinct was released in 2005. The game now runs on PC-based hardware, specifically the Taito Type X. The level system has been expanded in many forms with increasingly stricter requirements to reach the Grand Master rank. Modes include Easy, Sakura (a puzzle mode also seen in Tetris With Cardcaptor Sakura: Eternal Heart), the traditional Master mode, and Shirase (an extension of T.A. Death with even harsher speed, garbage, and levels beyond 999). It also features World and Classic Rules, the former added by Arika due to The Tetris Company's recent policy changes.

Tetris: The Grand Master Ace[edit]

Released in 2005 as a Japan-only launch title for the Xbox 360, this was the only game in the series to be released outside of arcades.

Unreleased games[edit]

Tetris: The Grand Master (PlayStation)[edit]

Tetris: The Grand Master was to be ported to the PlayStation in 1999, but because of a licensing restriction the port was canceled.[2]

TGM-K (tentative name)[edit]

In July 2004 Arika announced TGM-K for release on the PSP.[3] In 2011, Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu reported its release again for spring of 2012.[4]

Tetris: The Grand Master 4 - The Masters of Round[edit]

In September 2009, Tetris: The Grand Master 4 - The Masters of Round was unveiled at the Amusement Machine Show.[5][6] Three modes of Tetris: The Grand Master 4 - The Masters of Round have been shown so far: Master, Konoha (pieces are double size, simulating a 5x10 field and the object is to completely clear the playing field of blocks as many times as possible), and Rounds (similar to T.A. Death and Shirase modes, but with more levels and a fog mechanic that prevents line clears below a particular height until certain conditions are met). Additionally, it featured World and Classic types just like Tetris: The Grand Master 3. Tetris: The Grand Master 4 - The Masters of Round was supposed to run on the Sega RingWide hardware. On September 18, 2010, Arika Vice President Ichiro Mihara announced the cancellation of The Grand Master 4 on his blog.[7] In July 2015, Arika began location testing The Grand Master 4 in Japan[8] and the United States.[9] The titled was changed to The Grand Master 2015 reflecting the lack of a Tetris license or planned release.


  1. ^ (Tetris: The Grand Master 1-3)
  2. ^ (Tetris: The Grand Master Ace)


  1. ^ Tetris: The Grand Master Unused Content
  2. ^ アリカの「テトリス ザ・グランドマスター」 版権元の方針によって発売中止に
  3. ^ 「プレイステーション・ポータブル」(PSP) 国内参入ソフトウェアメーカー59社、ソフトウェアラインナップ59タイトル
  4. ^ 2011/10/12 フラゲまとめ F
  5. ^ Tetris THE GRAND MASTER4 THE MASTERS OF ROUND. :第47回 アミューズメントマシンショー セガ公式HP
  6. ^ Sega to release Tetris: The Grandmaster 4 The Masters of Round
  7. ^ Mihara's sub Layer 2010/09/18
  8. ^ Official Taito Hey Arcade Twitter announcement
  9. ^ "The Grand Master 2015 Arcade Testing In The US June 13th-14th". Arcade Heroes. Retrieved 26 June 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External links[edit]