16-Year-Old 'Tetris' Player Defeats 7-Time Champion

Joanna Estrada
October 23, 2018

On Sunday the 2018 Classic Tetris World Championships in Portland, Oregon wrapped up and the final threw up a bit of a curveball.

16-year-old gamer Joseph Saelee has defeated seven-time Tetris world champion (and current champ) Jonas Neubauer to take the official crown, reports Kotaku. Saelee, on the other hand, just started playing after watching the 2016 championships, he tells the BBC.

Saelee had to qualify for the competition and had a hard battle against Japanese grand master Koryan in the semi-finals. Despite the tremendous respect he has in the Tetris world, Jonas Neubauer started to stream on Twitch only previous year and every time his channel goes live it attracts thousands of viewers. The only time he lost in the grand finals was in 2014 when he got defeated by Harry Hong who was the first player ever to reach the max score of 999,999 in NES Tetris.

Players used their own unmodified NES controllers during the tournament.

Each match was a best-of-three affair, with players setting their games to the rolled sequence and agreed upon level (15 or 18).

Neubauer fell behind 0-2 in the series, and although he was 110,000 points ahead in the third game, Saelee was able to surpass his lead and win the title. This version of Tetris had already been around for 13 years when Saelee was born, but that didn't stop his building block expertise.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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