Game Changer

Friday, June 12, 2009


25 years ago the Russian computer programmer Alexey Pajitnov created the ur-video game Tetris. Simple to play, hard to win and ubiquitous, the game continues to frustrate and entertain the masses. We speak with Pajitnov about how he started the shapes falling.

Comments [4]

Melissa Gomez

Wow! It's been 25 years. I enjoyed the back story in this pod that told how he came about creating the game, I also enjoyed the humor that he brought when expressing that he was not being payed in the begining, but for him to be more intersted in getting the games published was his concern, now that's a true gamer. It's crazy to imagine that the creater had government beleived that he had no rights to the game under Russia, but it seemed as thought they had set up a contract to insure that safety of his rights. It was funny when he said that he was average when playing Tetris because he is the one with the power, you would figure he'd have it all planned out or some secret behind how to beat it.

Apr. 26 2011 11:45 PM
Daniel Z

I am amazed at how much games from decades ago, always seem to seep back into our minds as greats from time to time. We still say that games like Tetris, Pong and others are still considered some of the greatest games of all time. Tetris is an amazing game, "easy to play, hard to win", and heres hoping for another 25 successful years.

Oct. 28 2010 10:00 AM
Nataly L. from Kyiv

It was really interesting to know smth about the creation of Tetris. In my childhood it was the most popular game. Really, as Alexey Pajitnov mentioned, most people liked it because in almost all the games you destroy, kill smb, and in this game you build and think.
By the way, you have very interesting audios. I usually download everything at because I like to make my own choice, but now I see that I will become your regular listener!

Jul. 20 2009 10:52 AM
Bill Hart from Newtown, Connecticut

It's interesting, and ironic, that your story ended with Alexey Pajitnov's successful effort to secure the intellectual property rights to his game from his government, even though he wrote the game while in their employ and undoubtedly using their computers. Had he worked for most american companies, as a condition of employment he would have been required to sign an agreement granting the company all rights to any works developed while in their employ. These agreements are often quite broad granting the company ownership of almost any intellectual property created by the employee even if only distantantly related the the company's business. Although there are exceptions, american companies have a long way to go to provide the same intellectual property credit that is routinely given to authors of prose and TV shows, to the authors of software and technology in general. Maybe that's part of the reason why companies such as GM are having such a difficult time coming up with truely creative products. It is strangely satisfying that Pajitnov has won over a former socialist/communist organization.

Jun. 13 2009 03:35 PM

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