Ever since seeing players build perfect clears, and seemingly with such ease, I've been fascinated with it. Since my strongest Tetris attribute is "pattern building", and since building perfect clears is essentially a 4x10 pattern, it wasn't long before I HAD to dedicate time to studying this skill in more detail.
When I first attempted to build a standard 4x10 perfect clear from a clean matrix, I was amazed at how difficult it was. I've cleared the playing field many times, but rarely when purposely setting out to build a 4x10 perfect clear from a clean matrix. I spent some time looking around in the forums and found some posts that talked about common methods and patterns to look for, and I also spent time watching videos of people building them on YouTube (this is something I'd actually like to add to this post soon)
Just before to diving into this study, I had discovered the "playing forever
" pattern a few weeks prior. The playing forever pattern was such a surprise to me because I never knew that the pieces spawned in a way that was a lot less random than most people are aware of. Knowing this led me to wonder if something similar could be discovered with regards to building perfect clears.
In order to start this study, I needed data. Since, at the time, I had just completed a game where I built two back-to-back playing forever patterns, I collected my piece sequences from there. I wanted to use a sequence that I knew had been used in an actual guideline game.
After a couple weeks or so of collecting and organizing the data, and with the help of several great people in the community, I am ready to "publish" part 1 of the study. I welcome anyone who is interested to please take the time to check it out, and post comments/feedback here. I'm hoping that this will be the beginning of something great!Tetris Perfect Clear Study - Phase 1
*update 01 - 2011-12-16*
I updated the documentation with some info from Kitaru about the origins of perfect clears and which games rewarded players for completing them. Kitaru also said something that I hope will get other people excited as well: "I'm just starting to read your write-up, but I got to say this is probably one of the more important studies on Tetris in modern times, and I'm really excited to see if we can devise a way to 'solve' Tetris other than Playing Forever