# A few questions about TGM / Tetris

Thread in 'Strategy' started by sixb0nes, 31 Jul 2006.

1. ### sixb0nesUnregistered

Hello. I've been playing tgm and tgm2 for around a couple months now, but I don't seem to be getting any better! The furthest I got in 20g mode in tgm was around to the 2 ranking, and S3 in normal mode. My question is, is clocking in countless tgm marathons the only way to get good? That probably sounds like a fairly obvious question, but is there anything else I can do to get better? Like I don't know, any text files I can read about 20g theory?

This leads me on to the my next question. I've been watching the TGM vids from the Arika website, and I notice that the player seems to always place the pieces in the perfect position. I can usually maintain that in 20g for around 60-100 levels, but then I get one bad piece which pretty much fucks me up for that game. Besides actually playing the game, how does one train in the art of stack-building/piece positioning? Are there any guideline or rules to follow?

Next, is Tetris DS a good game to practice with? I know it uses the 'Worlds' rules, so I'm not quite sure... I mainly play tgm...

Okay, last question, in TGM2, what does the ST medal mean? I seem to randomly get it, although I suspect it has something to do with getting a certain score in under a certain time. Needless to say I get it in the rare event I actually manage to play decent! By level 100 in death.

Okay, that's all for now...

2. ### colour_thief

Maybe cgwg could comment if he's around? It's been quite a while since I overcame 20g, whereas he went from beginner to Gm in about 10 months, attaining it 6 weeks ago.

From the sounds of things you've got the hang of many 20g basics, but are having trouble unearthing holes. I'd focus on this in particular, playing TGM+ mode (with the 20g code) or even Shirase in Heboris practice mode. TDS isn't a bad choice either, because VS really stresses this skill. But switching back and forth between the games will give you 'tetlag' until you get used to it, so there's an extra learning curve factor there to slow you down. Overall Tetris is still Tetris and skill should largely carry over between games. I *think* what I did at your level was just play plenty of 20g mode until I could hit lvl 999 under 20g. Though once you hit lvl 500 you should technically be capable of clearing 999 in a normal game.

It's hard to give general advice... If you uploaded a Heboris replay I could comment on your technique.

3. ### colour_thief

Oh, one thing I forgot to mention...

It's much easier to clear holes made on the sides than in the center. So if given the opportunity, be sure to choose the lesser of 2 evils. Along these lines, if you've got an "overhang", some piece placements may fill this overhang while creating another. So it's technically not getting rid of the problem, but if this moves the overhang closer to the sides it's a good idea.

Hmm, maybe I need pictures for that to make sense.

4. ### sixb0nesUnregistered

Hello.

I uploaded some death mode replays using ti rules. I'll make some proper tgm 20g replays later.

http://omega.thedataprojects.com:3000/~ ... PLAY02.SAV

http://omega.thedataprojects.com:3000/~ ... PLAY03.SAV

http://omega.thedataprojects.com:3000/~ ... PLAY04.SAV

http://omega.thedataprojects.com:3000/~ ... PLAY05.SAV

note I am using that unoffical expansion.

The thing I don't like heboris though is that I find the pieces in the next piece well harder to 'see', I think it has something to do with the low res or colours... really annoying. I think I'll stick with zinc and mame for tgm. Oh yeah, that's another thing. Should I be practicing tgm 20g or tgm2 death mode? After playing death mode in tgm2 the 20g in tgm seems a bit sluggish, heh.

Also, I'm at uni a lot and I don't have a laptop, that's why I was asking about TDS. I would like to practice as much as possible, but it's not big deal...

5. ### tepplesLockjaw developer

In Tetris DS standard, a good metric is what you can do in the first 16 measures (29.7 seconds) of the Super Mario music. If you can get four tetrises, you're doing over 80 tpm.

6. ### colour_thief

I'm at work right now so I can't watch those replays, but I will when I get the chance.

I forgot to explain ST. It stands for Section Time, which is the time it takes to go from 0-100 or 100-200 etc. In Master Mode, the medal type reflects how close you are to the best record on the machine. Gold means you made a new record, silver means you were close. In Death Mode, I believe the colour of the medal is compared to some static standard, because the game doesn't seem to keep track of any Death Mode section time records.

I'd personally stay with the original TGM until you've got a stronger grasp of the strategy, but I didn't exactly have TGM2 as an option when I was your level so feel free to discount my opinion.

7. ### colour_thief

Just a quick note to say I haven't forgot about you sixb0nes... I just enjoyed my weekend and had no time for videos. Expect an update to day and tomorrow.

8. ### colour_thief

Hmm, I tried to nab the videos just now but it seems they're down.

9. ### sihumchaiUnregistered

On CT's post from past.

So TGM/ACE doesn't play much like TGM1 and TGM2? If true, maybe that explains why one of the "TGM/Ti" (can't really remember) settings in heboris plays much like SRS. A good example being, the I-piece behaviour, which does not require having a 2x2 space on the right in order to rotate.

Could you elaborate on that last bolded sentence? Largely ignored?

10. ### colour_thief

Well, there are a number of factors contributing to TGMA's lack of success. The platform is an important one: few people want an X360 in Japan. Another problem is the controller. The official controller is generally regarded as unacceptable. I think there was a 3rd party Hori brand controller people liked, and the number one choice was the Dead or Alive joystick. Though for that last one, you have to mod it yourself to use a 4-way guide.

The kicker, that I reference in that bolded sentence, is that after all that trouble... the money to buy it all and time for the joystick mod... and the shame for buying a X360... (Seriously, apparently you get strange looks from store clerks. Almost as if you'd bought panties out of a vending machine or something. And that's a better analogy than you might realise, because of how closely linked the Xbox brand is with scantily clad DoA ladies in Japan.)

As I was saying, after all that trouble, you don't even get something that feels familiar. The locktime behaviour, as well as the Up and Down direction behaviour are the largest offenders, requiring the player to change their play style significantly. It plays closest to Ti, but key components are so different that it ends up feeling hollow. A pale substitute for the arcade game.

...and there's also the fact that most of the game modes are left inaccessible if you lack Xbox Live. Even many single player modes need it. More money and inconvenience. TGMA was a flagship Live title of sorts, and the online modes are pretty empty. Even at launch.

The whole game pretty much oozes a lack of freedom during development, a combination of TTC and Microsoft stipulations.

(TGMA's "TGM rotations" are labelled something like ARS and ARS2 in Heboris. Yeah there are 2 versions. A Live update patch added the second which fixed some major issues people had. Though not all of them...)

11. ### sihumchaiUnregistered

Thanks for the great read CT.

On the randomizer: How in the world could they revert back to SZSZ memory-less, and not the "random bag of 7 pieces"? Which during that time, Henk had already created SRS.

On TGM series: What is Ti? Ti = TGM3(arcade) = TGM ACE(360)? And how is this version more superior compared to TGM1 and TGM2?

12. ### caffeine

the heboris guys did mention that ace ars was "strange!" how does it differ from ti?

13. ### Needle

Re sihumchai:

The term "SZSZ" that CT used in that article can be said to be slightly confusing. He is actually referring to the random bag of 7 pieces (guideline randomizer), particularly to its trait that it can generate at times a sequence of up to four S/Z mixed sequences. What that sentence means is that TGMA did not use TGM's own "four history, re-roll if duplicate" type algorithm, and instead used the guideline randomizer for the first time in a TGM game.

Ti is the shorthand of "Terror Instinct", the subtitle of TGM3. The full name of the game is "Tetris The Grand Master 3: Terror Instinct".

so TGM3 = Ti (Arcade), but Tetris The Grand Master Ace or TGM ACE/TGMA for short (X360), is a different game.

Re caffeine:

Up until TGMA, most (possibly all) popular games in Japan that used the Sega rotation used down to lock, and if hard drops existed, up to land. TGMA's ARS1 was the first experience for many Japanese players that the up-to-lock/down-to-land control scheme and the Sega rotation rules were combined in the same ruleset. Hence the "strange" comment.

That is the only difference between ARS1 and ARS2, actually. ARS2 is simply ARS1 with down-to-lock/up-to-land.

14. ### sihumchaiUnregistered

@ Needle: Thanks for clarifying that.

[learned something new here]

This term "down-to-lock/up-to-land" explains why sliding pieces in TGM are bad, and why Zangi-Moves was born in favor.

Because unlike SRS rules, performing a slide move is as easy as holding down(soft-drop) till the bottom, and a quick-timed slide will get it done(or twist).

This however isn't the same as ARS, because when you hold down, it acts like a soft drop, BUT, as soon as it lands, it immediately locks. You aren't given a single frame to perform anything else. No delay whatsoever.

15. ### Needle

sihumchai: do you have ARS and SRS mixed up? Your sentence makes more sense when it's swapped...

btw, I think the term "ARS" should be used to refer to the implementation in TGM ACE only and no other TGM game, as they all behave slightly differently:

TGM1:

Sega rotation with Arika wallkicks (I doesn't kick).

No instant drop.

Down-to-lock.

Lockdown count resets at step.

Game over when piece overlaps center of row 19/20.

TA/TAP(TGM2):

Sega rotation with Arika wallkicks (I doesn't kick).

Up-to-land/Down-to-lock.

Lockdown count resets at step.

Game over when piece overlaps center of row 19/20.

Ti Classic(TGM3):

Sega rotation with extended Arika wallkicks (I and T kick the ground).

Up-to-land/Down-to-lock.

Lockdown count resets at step.

Game over when piece overlaps center of row 19/20.

ARS(TGMA):

Sega rotation with extended Arika wallkicks (I and T kick the ground).

Down-to-land/Up-to-lock.

Lockdown count resets at movement/rotation.

Game over when piece overlaps center of row 21/22.

ARS2(TGMA):

Sega rotation with extended Arika wallkicks (I and T kick the ground).

Up-to-land/Down-to-lock.

Lockdown count resets at movement/rotation.

Game over when piece overlaps center of row 21/22.

A couple of more differences, like piece colors, exist which I omitted in this list. This is the reason Heboris has so many rulesets to choose from.

16. ### tepplesLockjaw developer

Do TGM3 and later also top out if the player manages to kick a T or I so far up that it locks completely above the visible portion of the playfield, even if it does not overlap where the next tetromino is supposed to enter?

17. ### colour_thief

Vertical kicks are allowed only once per piece, so I don't think that's even possible.

18. ### tepplesLockjaw developer

Unless I'm mistaken...

Code:
Set up the field like this:

:     : (hidden row)
:__________: (hidden row)
|   XXXX|
|   XXX |
. . .

During entry delay, charge DAS right and then do the following,
entirely by feel and sound:       I
I
:     :  :     :  :    I :
:___IIII___:  :______IIII:  :________I_:
|   XXXX| => |   XXXX| => |   XXXX|
|   XXX |  |   XXX |  |   XXX |
. . .     . . .

In this situation, when the player places a tetromino completely above the visible portion of the Matrix, Tetris DS tops out. Does TGMA?

Another thing: Do vertical kicks go straight up, or can they go up+sideways?

19. ### colour_thief

Well, you said "TGM3 and later", and TGM3 has the standard piece-overlap-death same as Sega Tetris did so it doesn't apply there. For TGMA you'll have to ask someone who's actually played it.

20. ### tepplesLockjaw developer

To perform this maneuver, hold right and press rotate twice:

Code:
                    I        I
:     :  :     :  :   I :  :    I :
:__________:  :__________:  :_______I__:  :________I_:
| IIII X| => |  IIIIX| => |   I X| => |    IX|
|   XXXX|  |   XXXX|  |   XXXX|  |   XXXX|
. . .     . . .     . . .     . . .

:     :
:______IIII:
=> |    X|
|   XXXX|
. . .

Does this work in TI?