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YMMV / Tetris: The Grand Master

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  • Awesome Music: Even if most of these games lack "Korobeiniki", they still have some pretty awesome music.
    • TGM ACE has an awesome remix of "Katyusha", heard only in Another Road.
  • Contested Sequel: Fans are split over whether TGM3 is an improvment upon TAP with its improved Arika Rotation System (specifically, the new "floor kick" added to the I-piece to make it easier to rotate when in 20G and the piece is horizontal), or Fake Difficulty: The Game due to the COOL system resulting in an unreasonably fast speed curve and encouraging Do Well, but Not Perfect tendencies in the name of better grades and the Easy mode having unintuitive and guide-requiring scoring mechanics.
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  • Cult Classic: Although the series is known through memetic videos at best outside of Japan, it does have a small dedicated following in the West. This seems to be changing in 2015, as demonstrations of it at Games Done Quick have helped bring more exposure to Western gamers. In Japan, the Pier21 arcade in Kodaira maintains a dedicated set of TGM setups, with periodic competitions still being held for the games over 20 years after the original TGM was released.
  • Default Setting Syndrome: World Rule in TGM3, particularly amongst those who haven't played any of the TGM games prior to it.
  • Friendly Fandoms: You can expect a lot of TGM players to also be Bemani or shmup players, most likely because all three of these comprise challenging skill-based single-player arcade games.
  • Good Bad Translation: The message you get in TGM3 if you take too long to pass certain levels: "EXCELLENT — but...let's go better next time"
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  • Internet Backdraft: In late 2018, Arika beefed up the requirements for posting TGM videos on YouTube (which include: use the #tgm_series tag, use only official hardware i.e. no emulators, no pirate data of TGM3, and no clones/simulators such as NullpoMino) and declared that effective January 1, 2019, any video that doesn't meet their new guidelines will be met with a copyright strike (and on YouTube, three copyright strikes will kill your account). Given that TGM is already extremely difficult to have legal access to if you don't live in Japan (the number of arcades outside of Japan that have legit TGM hardware likely number in the double digits at best and of course arcade hardware is expensive), this pissed off a lot of TGM fans outside of Japan, only furthering the existing disdain against Arika and the TTC and accusations of those two companies being overly protective of their brands.
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  • Mainstream Obscurity: The game has seen a lot of positive reception from Western fans...the problem is that few play it, partly because for most Westerners, the only way to play is to be lucky enough to live near an arcade with it (of which there are very, very few), buy the arcade hardware for a non-trivial amount of money, play clones, or pirate it.
  • Memetic Mutation: Drift-compatibleExplanation 
  • Mis-blamed: It was believed that TGM4 was canceled due to the Tetris Company's meddling, but it was revealed on December 5, 2010 that Sega refused to publish it and that Henk Rogers and the Tetris Company actually like this series. There are still some details left to speculation, but the troubles related to clones are no longer the only point of contention.
  • Most Annoying Sound: The REGRET!! sound in TGM3. Not only is it an indicator that you're going too slow, but it also means you've just lost one grade.
  • Most Wonderful Sound: The grade-increase sound. Daaaa dadada daaaaa!
  • Older Than They Think
    • 20G has appeared previously in an obscure Tetris clone for the Sharp X68000 computer known as "Shimizu Tetris".
    • For the more astute Tetris players reading this, the rotation system and piece colors for the TGM series is the same as the one in Sega's 1988 version of Tetris, only with the ability to rotate in more than one direction, and a mechanic that shifts the current piece to the side if you try to rotate it but normally can't due to a wall or piece obstructing it.
    • TGM wasn't the first game with Sega rotation to introduce wall kicks - Tetris Plus 2 had almost the same system a year earlier.
  • The Scrappy: There's an unlikely one in TAP's T.A. Death mode. It's the I piece. Due to it being the only piece that can't kick, simply setting up a one-cell-wide hole on either the far left or right isn't enough to set up for a Tetris; you also have to set up a slightly wider opening for the piece to slip through. Thankfully, in regards to the other pieces, the game gives you some relief in the form of never giving out an S, Z, or O as the first piece. The I was Rescued from the Scrappy Heap in Ti, where a horizontally-laid I can now kick off of the floor once.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • Firm drop for some players, which has led to many a misdrop (and is possibly why players in some regions stick to World Rule, which offers standard hard drop).
    • In the original TGM, allowing and refusing VS matches can only be changed through operator settings; if they're disabled, both sides can peacefully play single-player but can't battle, and if they're enabled and another player has the lack of etiquette to put in their coins and press start, the first player's run will be ended and disqualified from rankings (yes, even if you are at level 998 and you are about to get a GM rank). Subsequent games allow the player to refuse VS matches simply by pressing their start button.
    • For many players, Easy mode in Ti. Not for easily-guessable reasons, but because the mechanics behind the hanabi (fireworks) scoring system are needlessly complicatednote  and, from what players can make out, emphasize non-typical stacking strategies to build up combos rather than just making Tetrises all day.
    • The "COOL!!" system in Ti's Master mode is disliked by some players due to consecutive COOL!! requirements being dependent on how fast you went in the previous section; if you have a strong early game the game will expect you to keep it up lest you screw yourself out of good grades and the invisible roll, as opposed to performing decently at the start and improving later on. Thus, this system can encourage players to Do Well, but Not Perfect.
    • "Mihara's conspiracy". Basically, because the wall kicks are done in right-left order, trying to squeeze pieces in will, in very specific cases, result in the piece shifting to an unexpected spot because you were trying to slip it in left and the game did a right-shift first, something that doesn't happen if you horizontally flip the scenario.
    • TGM ACE is by all accounts a fairly adequate game if you don't mind that it's not really a TGM game, but one glaring issue players have is with multiplayer mode, in which the round ends when either player makes 20 lines. To put it in perspective, you only need five Tetrises to win. This gives players hardly any opportunity for intense matches, as rounds are determined by 20 line clears more than by either player being garbaged to death.
  • Sequelitis: TGM ACE. A good Tetris game, but you'd be hard-pressed to find someone who would regard it as a great game by TGM standards.
  • Signature Scene: The "invisible Tetris" sequences in the second and third games that are triggered by fulfilling certain difficult criteria.
  • That One Level: Level 300-499 in TGM1 and Master mode in both versions of TGM2, and speed level 300-499 in TGM3. Around this range pieces are falling quite fast but not quite 20G just yet...which is exactly the problem, because it's harder to predict if a piece has enough clearance to cross a particular gap or move far enough from its spawn, as opposed to flat-out 20G where piece placement options are more predictable.
  • They Copied It, Now It Sucks: The sentiment Ichiro Mihara, the lead developer had to the clones of this very game (as detailed in Artist Disillusionment in Trivia section), which led to him stopping development.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: TGM4's version of the Arika Rotation System would have had, instead of step reset (in which the timer for a piece locking resets only on a piece moving down), use move reset (in which you only need to move the piece). This has not sat well with some fans.
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