# Winning strategy in multiplayer Tetris DS [split topic]

Um, master players do not have all of ability, too
For instance,#0MASASAITOH of top player was not able to use t-spins. What's more, much to my surprise, he didn't so much as draw a line about the use of rotation related to directions. He did use the only "A" button. Nevertheless I was not able to compare with him.

Beyond that, i know SEN/SEN and TGM-HOLiC didn't use TST too much. Moreover NOAH, too, didn't do when he was an active player.

The rapid operation and t-spin techniques surely are important factors as was pointed out. However, to judging from precedent of many top players, I think these techniques are not all.

The point is to have strong nose for survival. If player surpassed any other player in survival instincts, the player woundln't definitely lose?a match.

I once heard SAMAF saying "the player who wins the digging race becomes a winner of games."

Speaking to the extreme, we all have only to avoid "GAME OVER".

I think you needn't learn t-spins yet
cheer up!

2. ### caffeine

i 100% agree with you, mask. back when i use to play tetrinet, most pros agreed that the "god strategy" was being able to downstack (dig down through garbage) and survive.

3. ### Muf

I know that TDS rewards defensive play better than aggressive play, but sometimes I just play because I want to crush someone, because I want to truly defeat them, not to be the one who survives longest. When I play difficult opponents I switch to defensive play halfway through the game, but my heart lies in attacking. I have the most fun when both players (me and my opponent) are attacking with tetrises. It becomes a battle, instead of a game of endurance. That's how I like to play tetris. You have to stack high to make back to backs, but you have to be careful of garbage. It's a fine balance, and it's the purest form of tetris in my opinion.

4. ### caffeine

i don't really see why that would be "purer." i think you just got fixed in your ways somewhere along the way. do what it takes to win, or don't complain when you lose.

5. ### tepplesLockjaw developer

Not necessarily. If you get dirty garbage, you can TSS or TSD some of it away, and those give you back-to-back bonuses just like a tetris. So it's worth learning to T-spin even if only so that you can play offense and defense at once.

6. ### DIGITALUnregistered

I don't know how much defensive play is rewarded in TDS but it certainly does not trump offensive play. What I mean is that if you kept countering my garbage, I'm not going to stack myself into a top out. I'd reword it to this: Offensive+Defensive play > Offensive play > Defensive play. Assuming both players are competent with fundamental stacking skills, a purely defensive player cannot ever win as he's not even attacking.

7. ### caffeine

i sharply disagree with this. first off, i don't see "offensive" or "defensive" in tetris. i only see one correct way to play, and that is to maximize your advantage against the opponent. and ultimately to do this you want to have your baseline (the lowest row in your well to not have a hole above it) to be as low as possible and to have the opponent's baseline as high as possible. clearing garbage efficiently (logically placing the tetrominoes in a fashion that will minimize the number of rows you must clear to lower your baseline) and effectively (maximizing yield by clearing tetrises and t-spins out of existing garbage while lowering them at the same time) is by far the best way to win. maybe this concept is devalued with new games like tetris ds and and tetris splash where garbage comes in tetris-you-back fashion, but i haven't found firm indication of that just yet.

famous tnet player spindizzy wrote an interesting article about the idea.

8. ### DIGITALUnregistered

Don't know what you're disagreeing with as you're agreeing with me in your post. Remember, we're only talking about TDS here, not general Tetris strategy. What you elaborated on is basically what Offensive+Defensive is. You maximize the damage sent (offensive) while minimizing the damage you recieve or the danger you are in (defense). Both these terms have many implications and branches. It just so happens that the "what it takes to win" approach in TDS falls within the Offensive+Defensive playstyle. The terms offensive and defensive in this case do not strictly mean "send garbage" and "counter garbage."

9. ### Rosti LFC

Yeah,what Digital is saying is that for Tetris DS, you can't really win by sending your opponent as much garbage as you possibly can, and you won't win by concentrating purely on keeping the stack low. You need a balanced strategy of back to back Tetrises and t-spin doubles, while also being able to drill through garbage when you need to.

well, i feel that "DEFENSIVE or AGGRESSIVE" is different from what i mean. it's too difficult to express with words

i often feel the leading players have a sense unique to them, which many common players don't have.

i remember a certain leading player once asked me such a question. suppose you faced the following situation. how do you place the S piece in the field ?

which do you choose, A or B ?

case A

case B

since i thought that it's important to keep the field level and secure so as to accept many situations, i chose "A" without hesitation.

however, "i don't easily know which to choose." was his reply. it seemed his intuition told him not to make a hollow between the wall and the S piece laid in case A.

he feels it unstable or wobbly similar to a fear from the hollow.

the scare point

beyond that, i have heard some cases similar to this...

i think the leading players find a delicate, sharp and special "sense" themselves, not fighting defensively or aggressively. they have a great eye, sensitive to risk or chance.

well, i'm not sure... so, i've always wanted to feel "sense" the way they do, like NOAH, SEN/SEN, #0MASASAITOH, Yoshihiro?...etc.

ah, i'm sorry for doing nothing but speaking my mind in the abstract, it's only me

presented by ema's editor

11. ### jujubeUnregistered

i saw it the same way, and without looking deeper i also chose A. A looks very pretty, and in the short term it keeps your stack lower. it's very tempting to place one piece at a time with the thought "i must keep my stack low with this placement" when we should be thinking "my stack must be flat after the next 5 placements." in addition, we should use I and T as little as possible to fix the stack.

placing the S on the left side i believe will require an I or T to fix it later. i think this is unavoidable [edit: assuming the previews contain 1 of each piece, which is the most likely scenario (maybe "unavoidable" is a bad choice of words)].

however, placing the S on the right gives your field a sort of symmetry, with 3 flat columns on either side.

which allows you to hold onto an I or T and use it to send garbage when you're ready.

it's interesting that some players can instinctively see this situation for what it is and make the correct decision, while other players can't. but i'm staying optimistic and assuming these things can be learned through practice.

12. ### Rosti LFC

Jujube, for the S dilemma you posted, my instinct is definitely the second one, simply because TGM and ARS are now what largely dominate the Tetris part of my brain, and the second option, though still not ideal, is far more versatile with what you can do. I think most of the TGM players would pick B.

Of course, if you were good at TGM, you wouldn't have the Tetris column in the centre anyway

13. ### tepplesLockjaw developer

I don't think using a T to fix it is so hard to avoid. Here, I fill the gap with ZZJ:

Code:
|     |  |     |  |     |  |JJ    |
|     |  |     |  | ZZ   |  |JZZ   |
|     |  | Z    |  | ZZZ   |  |JZZZ   |
| SS   |  |ZZSS   |  |ZZSS   |  |ZZSS   |
| SS   | => |ZSS   | => |ZSS   | => |ZSS   |
|GGGG GGGGG|  |GGGG GGGGG|  |GGGG GGGGG|  |GGGG GGGGG|
Does that have any particular drawbacks that I haven't anticipated?

14. ### Rosti LFC

Maybe my knowledge of SRS isn't up to scratch, but I don't think you could actually get the J into that position with 20G.

15. ### jujubeUnregistered

well, for one, it takes 4 pieces to do it that way and could leave you with a lopsided stack. and this could give you headaches if the garbage holes shift leftwards. then again, depending on the exact pieces you get, there are many possible arrangements that could be optimal in specific situations.

edit: heh i used 4 pieces with the T fix. still, it's more feasible without knowledge of the previews because you're not relying on 2 Z's.

16. ### caffeine

rotate clockwise, das all the way left, hard drop?

17. ### Rosti LFC

If that's a response to me, then I stated in 20G. Obviously with 0G it's trivial.

18. ### DIGITALUnregistered

I wholeheartedly agree. Given these situations, the player has to consider the context behind the placements. There are many factors. These are only some of them.

1. The preview. You can optimize situations given different tetromino order. This will allow you to incorporate a much deeper insight into non-overstacking.

2. What you have in HOLD. Do you have a piece that can flatten your field? Do you have a T? do you have an I? Do you have something for skimming?

3. The height of the opponent's field. Is your opponent near the top or down at the bottom? How many rows will it take to top him out?

4. The shape of the opponent's field. Is the opponent ready to pounce on your garbage or stuck in a messy pile of garbage? Can he counter?

5. Type of placement. Are you trying to downstack? Are you planning a spike?

6. Timing. Can you time your placement rhythm in a manner so that the garbage cannot be countered by altering how many pieces it'll take for you to T-Spin?

7. Opponent's last placements. Did he just T-Spin or Tetris? What did he last use? Is he likely to have another T or I coming? in HOLD perhaps?

19. ### colour_thief

I agree with jujube. A big part of stacking well with history randomizers is to create screen geometry that favours pieces you haven't recently received.

20. ### DIGITALUnregistered

As you play, you gain a sense of what techniques and placements provide a higher win probability. This sounds simple but it incorporates so many gameplay elements that you take for granted. You may look at a field and instinctively know what is a "good" and a "bad" placement but there has to be reason behind your choices. That's really what the "sense" is. Experience. What works? What doesn't work? What works better?