She had said she wanted to play tetris on her computer. I downloaded several different tetris games onto my computer, then sent them over to her so she could use them.

It was fine at first. We'd quietly ignore our homework and pretend we didn't have classes while moving little blocks on the screen. We'd each improve our personal top ten scores lists. Sometimes we'd chat while we played. But sooner or later, the need to be the best reared its ugly head.

I was better at playing tetris than she was. I do not say this as a way to make myself feel more important; I simply scored much higher than she did. Our approaches to the game varied significantly. And, based on the way tetris is scored, my style was better.

She was not accustomed to losing. She had been raised to believe she was the perfect child, and she was given whatever she wanted. She simply did not lose. It was not her way. As a result of seeing that I was doing better than she was, she decided that the most logical course of action was to make up a new set of rules that would allow her to come out on top. This came to light one day while she was playing and I was studying.

"I just played my best game ever!" She beamed.
I look over at her screen. "But . . . look at your scores. That last game only came in 6th overall."
"Oh, I don't count those numbers as how well I played."
I cock my head, looking at her quizzically. "But, umm . . . that's how you keep score."
"Oh, that's not how I keep score. I only go by the total number of lines you zapped."
"But that's not how you play tetris. That's not the rules."
"That's how I want to play, okay?"

Getting the distinct feeling this "new" system of scoring was simply a way for her to beat me, I drop the issue. It wouldn't have really mattered either way, though . . . when she finishes discussing something, it makes no difference whether you have more to say. The conversation is over. And the last comment she made clearly showed we were not going to talk about tetris any longer.


It's been an awfully long time since I've played the Gameboy version of Tetris. However, it is scored the same way as the computer version I currently have (and she also plays). An important thing to note would be that while, of course, the way to get points is to create lines (and that the more lines you get, the higher your score gets), the actual score is a different number. The actual score is influenced but not entirely controlled by the number of lines you get, because the more lines you get at a time, the more each individual line is worth. So the scores that are ranked in the top-ten list are not equivalent with how many lines you get during the game. In the Gameboy version, the nifty rockets are controlled by how many points you get, as you recieve rockets at 100,000 and 200,000 points. Apparently, some of the newer, non-Gameboy Tetris games are scored almost entirely on lines, with a MUCH smaller bonus for a Tetris (or, zapping four lines at a time). The game we were playing was not scored like this.

If I am wrong, please feel free to /msg me so I can correct this.

Thanks to yerricde for the information on how rockets are awarded, and information on newer games.