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According to a post on the blog of Ichiro Mihara, the designer of games in the "Tetris: The Grand Master" series, the upcoming release of Tetris: The Grand Master 4 has been canceled in part due to so-called "foreign clones."

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Update3: A newer translation offered up by community member Ineluctable Entropy, with a fix:

Why was this said now at such a late point in time (probably referring to development, as in development has been going on for a while)?

Because there's not enough leeway in time to clean up overseas clones, TGM4 will not be released (Oh well, here is one of the reasons).

It's been one year already since that predicament, yet it's still not published. It seems impossible, doesn't it?

A proud saying would be "bad money drives out the good." (It's a proverb meaning money (which is viewed as bad cuz of greed, etc) stopped good things from happening, more or less). When TGM's material is rejected, forgive me but I get upset. It makes me very much want to say an unpleasant word.

For these reasons, please forget about TGM. The person saddened the most by this is me.

Even if it is a lost cause, we can consider its material in the future.

I will make a different contract with new regulations for a new arcade game (TGM5).

Original text:

なぜ今更言い出したのか?

海外でのクローン掃除をしている余裕がないのでTGM 4はリリース出来ません(理由のひとつですが)。
なのでもう諦めてます。

あの状態からもう1年も出ないってありえないでしょ?

偉そうに言うと、悪貨に良貨が負けたんですよ。
TGMのネタを振られると、申し訳ないですがイラっと します。
嫌味の一言も言いたくなりますよ、そりゃ。

なので、もうTGMの事は忘れて下さい。
私が一番悲しいです。

悪あがきはしますが。
今後の検討材料。

・アーケードで別契約で新規に作る(TGM5)

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Mihara's mention of "foreign clones" likely refers to games such as Nullpomino and Texmaster, which feature fairly accurate representations of the gameplay in Tetris: The Grand Master series games. ("foreign" seems to be a misnomer unless it refers to the countries in which the games are primarily being used, as the original authors of both pieces of software are Japanese.) Arika has attempted to squelch the presence of fan games in the past by having gameplay videos removed from video upload services such as YouTube[1] and Nico Nico Douga[2]. Arika also served a Cease & Desist to the developer of a popular homebrew clone for the Nintendo DS that was said to have been sold commercially without the original author's knowledge.[3] However, there is no indication that Arika has attempted direct attempts to halt development of other clones.

It is unclear whether The Tetris Company has played a role in this cancellation, but there have been indications that TTC has potentially blocked Arika from releasing things on grounds of clones and emulation in the past. A port of Tetris: The Grand Master 2 for the PlayStation 2 console was left unreleased, -- supposedly due to emulation and the availability of the clone TexMaster -- with Sega's Tetris Collection with Tetris New Century earning the license in the region instead.[4] On the other hand, it could be a decision made by TGM4's prospective publisher, Sega, or by Arika themselves. At this point, there is no way to know the full story. Fans of the series can only hope that the announcement is a hoax or that any problems blocking the game's release can be resolved, but as things stand the prospects are looking grim.

Sources:

[1] http://tetrisconcept.net/forum/showthread.html?t=702

[2] http://www.nicovideo.jp/watch/sm10504604

[3] http://tetrisconcept.net/forum/showpost.html?p=22137&postcount=12

[4] http://tetrisconcept.net/forum/showthread.html?t=1217

Comments:
Comment by Someone2knoe on September 21, 2010, 5:56 pm
If they don't like tetris clones they should just give on tetris completely, then we can take it over and do it right.
Comment by m__ on September 21, 2010, 5:51 am
if the game won't leave japan what option do we have but to play clones. why do they think that we do not deserver to play the real tetris game?
Comment by TetrisdAiSuki on September 20, 2010, 1:11 pm
It's okay, I found the videos. They were both removed as well...
Comment by TetrisdAiSuki on September 20, 2010, 12:25 pm
Thanks for providing a translation Caithness and Ineluctable Entropy. Are Machoman3499SA's Texmaster TAS videos still available on Nico Nico Douga? And who put them there? I remember someone on 2ch linked to the videos, but I can't find the links anymore.
Comment by Kitaru on September 20, 2010, 9:13 am
JM was a sort of way to break away and make something without restrictions, I'll agree. I just wish they could have the same liberty in making TGM. Also, a translation update. Thanks to both Caithness and Ineluctable Entropy for helping provide much more clarity than the machine translation we had to start.
Comment by Caithness on September 20, 2010, 7:27 am
Wasn't Jewelry Master an attempt to move on from the Tetris Company? Also, I disagree with Ineluctable Entropy's translation on one point: 理由の一つ is definitely "one of the reasons" and not "the sole reason".
Comment by Kitaru on September 20, 2010, 3:16 am
Time to move on from The Tetris Company
Comment by meow on September 20, 2010, 2:17 am
time to move on from the arcade business model
Comment by Someone2knoe on September 19, 2010, 10:18 pm
I'm not that sad, but sympathetic toward tgm fans.
Comment by L-mino on September 19, 2010, 10:00 pm
I'm with Beastin... I really sad

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