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> Interview with ohitsstef
Radiance
post Apr 20 2012, 01:06 AM
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ohitsstef
aka stephlov3syo0h aka butthole aka Wink aka Vibrance aka Stephanie


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CO-founder of STARS
HardDrop's twitter-er
History Major - Pre-Law student
Avid gamer, food critic, food blogger, and serious life blogger
Age 22
Tetris Age 13
Tetris PC era, when tetris was about building pretty castles.


High Scores:
40 Lines: 37.xx
Block Driller: 17.47
Block Survivor: 3:31

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Thanks for taking the time to sit with me. I'd like you to answer all of my questions to the best of your ability, alright?

Stephanie: Alright.

Awesome. So with this being a tetris interview, I'd like to start with some tetris-related questions, the first of which regarding your history with the game. How long have you been playing tetris, or rather, what was the very first tetris game you played?

Stephanie: The first tetris game I played was Tetris PC. My dad used to come home after work and play that while I watched, but I didn't start playing it until my cousins came over to visit. They told me that the goal of the game was to build pretty castles

Oh, so tetris is a family phenomenon? Does your dad still play tetris now?

Stephanie: He doesn't play anymore. He thinks my obsession with tetris is actually unhealthy.

Oh, that's unfortunate. Would you agree with him? How would you describe your relationship with tetris?

Stephanie: I agree with him to a certain point. When I first started out playing tetris seriously, I wanted to beat all of the levels on Tetris PC. That meant spending hours in front of the computer beating each level until I got to the last one. Then when it came to multiplayer tetris, I'd have to wait around for friends to sign on so I could beat them, and spend even more time training to become better than them.

How old were you when you considered yourself to be taking tetris seriously?

Stephanie: Seriously seriously? Single player or multiplayer?

Well, you refer to taking tetris on the PC seriously, so we can start with that. How about multiplayer? How old were you when you started, and what exactly was the spark that got you diving into the multiplayer community?

Stephanie: I became serious about Tetris PC when I was around 9, because that's when my cousins came over and tricked me. My dad got mad at me for falling for their lies, and I wanted to show him I could be good at tetris just like him, if not even better. As for multiplayer, I started out on Tetris DS at around 16. My ex-boyfriend bought me a Nintendo DS with an r4 card. He and his friend had DSes too and we'd play 1v1. I'd always beat my ex but rarely his friend. Because I hated losing, I began practicing hard to become a better player.

Tetris DS was one of the first games that rewarded T-spins. Did you know how to use them back then?

Stephanie: I didn't do tspins back then. I was a pure tetris player. A "stick" player.

I see. most of us were.

Stephanie: After my ex and I broke up, I put the Nintendo DS aside and migrated to blockles,
where I played with some friends. I still wasn't able to beat a lot of people there, but I did learn the gist of downstacking. A friend of mine told me to "clear the grey blocks", but I never knew the actual term "downstacking".

Yep, same concept. Would you say you were good at blockles when you first started playing?

Stephanie: I thought my Tetris DS "skills" would transfer to Blockles, but the controls were different and it set me back. So no, I wasn't a good Blockles player when I started out.

I see. a lot of people know you as a blockbox player. How and when did you discover blockbox, and what can you say about your time spent playing that game?

Stephanie: I discovered Blockbox after I quit Blockles for a few months. Blockles was enjoyable for a few months, but then the site began lagging and a lot of people moved to items mode games which lost me a lot of opponents to play. I first moved to Tetris Friends, where I drilled 40 lines all day. This was when I still did single rotation. My goal was to become the fastest player in my group of friends. That was surprisingly easy to do, but then my friend told me my hard work on tetris friends was silly because someone by the name of "Maserati" had the fastest time in the world, and he played on blockbox. "If you want to be the best, you have to play with the best." I quickly migrated to Blockbox and was turned off immediately by how difficult it was to adapt to the game's tunings. I'll admit, my 40 lines time did not improve as fast as I'd hoped it would. At the time, my 40 lines time on TF was 1:05 and on BB it was 1:15-20. Out of the time spent playing Blockbox, I learned how to double rotate, downstack, play faster, stack neater (flatter) and just overall.. be an aggressive player. That was just the playing side of it, I did develop close relationships with some of the members on there. Overall, the community was very close knit.

What contributed to your improvement?

Stephanie: FFA and 1v1 matches helped me learn how to downstack. I always played 1v1 matches with more skilled players like Anonymous, Vietthehand, Vietthefoot, Profane, Corrosive, Sheena, Clincher, etc etc.

Would you call yourself a good downstacker? Let's say you had to explain the concept to a new player. How would you describe downstacking?

Stephanie: I don't think I'm a good downstacker... lol, but if I had to explain it, I'd say pay attention to your primary and secondary holes? I really don't have a solid theory on how to downstack well, in the moment of the game and out of my desire to win I just happen to downstack. But I don't take notes. I think it takes the fun out of the game if you know how to play in order to win.. and you just stick with those guidelines all the time.

I also see that you're quite fond of multiplayer modes. how would you describe your own playstyle?

Stephanie: I have no solid style of playing. Since I came from Blockles, I can play without depending on a lot of previews or even having to use hold. This was one of my biggest problems when I first started playing Blockbox. Also, I started out as a single rotation player, which was a "big disability" to some players. But if you ever watch me play, I have different starts all the time, and I'm always improvising. The only thing I play towards is the win and that's what drives me.

That's interesting to not depend on previews or hold in this guideline era. Would you say it holds you back outside of blockbox too?

Stephanie: No, not really. A lot of players nowadays depend too much on previews and holds. When they're introduced to different games, like cultris, they're at a complete disadvantage.

Would you say that you value the ability to jump between different tetris clones?

Stephanie: Yeah, absolutely. Different games give you different lessons. To be a good player in one game is great, but why limit your field of expertise? The ability to jump from different games with different rules and styles is really impressive and makes you that overall good Tetris player.

If a new player were to ask you for advice on how to approach multiplayer tetris, universally, what would you say?

Stephanie: You have to learn how to stack well. Always think before hand, and grow some balls. Don't play too safe, because playing safe won't always give you that feeling of satisfaction after you win a game.

So where can people find you nowadays? What are your favourite multiplayer tetris clones, and what do you like best about them?


Stephanie: At the moment I enjoy Blockbox, TOP and Cultris 2.

Blockbox- because that's where I met a lot of Harddrop people. We had sort of a family on there. Everyone knew everyone. And back when it was active we'd always jump into FFA rooms and just play into the late hours at night. The core members of my STARS team members come from Blockbox - Profane, Arf and Radiance (you.) Over the years, even though everyone's moved on to different things in life and stopped playing blockbox, we still talk to each other and have something to connect with because the community was that tight.

As for TOP/TOJ - it opened my eyes to a new way of playing. Coming from Blockles/Blockbox I never knew what a tspin was.. or even how to combo. But because I wanted to become not just a good Blockbox player but an all around better Tetris player, I had to learn how to adapt to TOP/TOJ rules as well. That meant learning how to combo, tspin, trip tspin etc etc. The game also helped me enjoy longer games. Unlike Blockbox, games on TOP/TOJ could last over a minute if played well.

Cultris 2 on the other hand is a completely different game. I enjoy the tight enthusiastic community as well as the game. There's no hold and only one preview which is right up my alley with Blockles.

Ah, that's cool. I'd say that the exact same things entice me about each game. So you play TOP/TOJ. If there was anything you'd change about the current guideline, what would it be?

Stephanie: At the top of my head, I'd probably only change how powerful combos are. Maybe have them timed like they are on cultris. But for the most part i like how powerful tspins are ~

I see. A lot of people feel that way about combos. So everyone knows you're a very vocal member of the harddrop community. How do you feel about harddrop, and where would you like to see the community could go in the future?

Stephanie: I feel like Harddrop started out with very cool statement. "Hard Drop is a Tetris community for all Tetris players, regardless of skill or which version of Tetris you play. We are all united by our common love of Tetris." Back when I started we all, for the most part, played the same game, Blockbox. If you didn't play Blockbox, you were most likely unknown on Harddrop when you joined. And we'd all direct you to Blockbox - to be one with the community.

Nowadays it seems as though the direction has been lost, and a lot of newer members are unaware and trying to become more aware of how to appreciate Tetris on a competitive multiplayer player's standpoint.. but really have a hard time doing so because there are so many games to choose from yet.. Harddrop does not recognize (or stand behind) one game. We have members who play Tetris Battle, others on Tetris Friends.. some from Cultris merging onto Harddrop.. and few (me) who still cheer for Blockbox although it usually gets pushed aside and people brush it off.

Anyways, I guess what I'm trying to get at is.. In the future I want more people to be able to tolerate other Tetris games out there. You don't have to like it, just tolerate it. Let the Tetris Friends fans cheer for their game.. and Tetris Battle.. and Blockbox. Oh speaking of tolerate, some people on Harddrop need to realize this is the internet. If you come here expecting a nice stroll through the park with flowers and daisies.. then give me your address, so I can send you a box of tissues. There will be people who won't get along with you and so what? No one can genuinely get along with everyone.

So you're the first female player in this series of interviews. Do you feel that there's anything that goes with the title of female tetris player? Do you treat others in a certain way? Do you expect to be treated a certain way? What is your overall stance on how females are received in the community?

Stephanie: Being a female Tetris player, people are automatically nicer to us and more tolerant. But then again, this also means a lot of people don't expect much out of female players because there aren't a lot of us. A lot of people expect girls to be stupidly nice to them, and I'm really not the type to feign niceness. I'm very straight forward to people because I hate talking in circles.

I treat everyone the same on HD, if you're right I'll stand up for you.. but if you're wrong I'll tell you straight up you're wrong. I don't take sides with friends or people I don't like. And when I'm wrong, I expect people to tell me I'm wrong.

A lot of girls in gaming communities in general, enjoy the attention they get from other guys. Many put themselves on a pedestal, claiming that if they post up pictures or open themselves up to other people they're going to get stalked. When really, people are just curious and want to know what they look like. It really annoys me when people are like this; if you aren't willing to be open with the community, then say you aren't. Don't make up stupid excuses to put others down.

And lastly, guys, just because a girl's nice to you it doesn't mean she likes you. She's just being nice.

Alright, so as I close, let's step outside of the tetris world. What is your name?

Stephanie: Stephanie. LOL

What is your quest?

Stephanie: My quest is to make the world a better place. I'm starting out with baby steps at the moment, breaking silence by approaching topics people quiver to speak of on my blog and posting beautiful pictures of the food I eat/make onto my food blog

What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

Stephanie: iono..

Alright. So that concludes our interview. Is there anything else you'd like to say?

Stephanie: Shout out to the cool people I've met on Harddrop! 1 thumb up for the members who tolerate my sharp tongue. 2 thumbs up for the folks that actually appreciate my rawness. STARS 4 LIFE! Rep Blockbox OGs!


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Blink
post Apr 20 2012, 01:22 AM
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Wow you've been playing Tetris about as long as I have? I never knew! Nice work with the interview you two, and thanks for all the help around the site stephie Grin.png.
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Alexsweden
post Apr 20 2012, 09:14 AM
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"aka butthole" xD
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ohitsstef
post Apr 20 2012, 02:26 PM
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:3 super alias!


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Radiance
post Apr 20 2012, 07:48 PM
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r u a pretty gerl


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ohitsstef
post Apr 20 2012, 09:32 PM
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i think i'm an okay gurl.

lol and Ben Mullen wrote on fb that he thought my sn was oh sh** its stef
nahh it's oh it's stef
:3


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Radiance
post Apr 20 2012, 09:38 PM
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i think ur a pretty gerl


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Blink
post Apr 20 2012, 11:38 PM
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Heya Stephie, I have a few questions:

1) Why do you think the North American Tetris community is sort of in a lull right now, rather than growing?

2) What steps do you think the Tetris community needs in order to reach a better level?

3) I know you said you agreed with your dad that your obsession with Tetris is unhealthy, but I'm glad you're still very active around here. Do you see yourself quitting Tetris anytime in the near future?

4) What's my birthday?
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ohitsstef
post Apr 21 2012, 02:05 AM
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QUOTE(Blink @ Apr 20 2012, 11:38 PM) *

Heya Stephie, I have a few questions:

1) Why do you think the North American Tetris community is sort of in a lull right now, rather than growing?

2) What steps do you think the Tetris community needs in order to reach a better level?

3) I know you said you agreed with your dad that your obsession with Tetris is unhealthy, but I'm glad you're still very active around here. Do you see yourself quitting Tetris anytime in the near future?

4) What's my birthday?


1. I don't think the North American Tetris community is in a lull right now. A lot of the older members aren't around anymore and that's simply because they've moved on to other hobbies. But from what I've seen recently, we do have a lot growth coming from the younger players.

2. Like I mentioned in my interview, I think as long as people become more tolerable and mature about every Tetris platform out there this community would be grand. This doesn't go for just players but also TTC. I think they should work towards making better/different games rather than trying to drain money out of the players.

3. This sounds silly, but honestly I don't think I'll ever quit Tetris. Ever. It's been such a big part of my life, if Tetris was a sport of extracurricular activity, I'd put it on there. (Actually it pretty much is, because I spend so much time on it.) I'm not ashamed or embarrassed by the fact that I play so much Tetris. I proudly tell my friends that I have dreams where I'm playing Tetris, whether it be single player modes or multiplayer.. and sometimes I'll tell them I have to do something Tetris related and we'll have to hang out at a later time. Whenever I introduce myself to new people, I make it a point to say I play Tetris competitively. I even mention STARS and drop Tetris terms here and there. So yeah.. no... I don't see myself ever quitting Tetris.

4. 8/31 even though that has nothing to do with my interview. conceited much?


Also for anyone who hasn't been on Harddrop a lot.. or really talked to me, I wrote a blog about it last year. Short but concise.

QUOTE

It is NOT just a game

If I have invested so much time for it

If I sign up for tournaments

If I start sweating as I play

If I become so excited when I win I rip my shirt off

If I spend time learning setups

If I play BB, TOJ, Nullpomino, TF, Cultris, LockJaw, TPDS, and TDS

If the first thing I do when I wake up is play Tetris and the last thing I do before I sleep is play more Tetris

If I have mini anxiety attacks before/during matches. Oh yeah SERIOUSLY lol stuff

If I want to win




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Blink
post Apr 21 2012, 03:58 AM
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Nice replies, I like your perspective. As admin of HD people usually come to me to talk about what's wrong with the community or just being negative in general with complaints that things are slowly dying. It's nice to see someone with a more positive look on things. Especially your #1 and #2.

Few more questions I've never asked you before:

What are your thoughts on the future of Tetris?

If Tetris ever becomes a sport, what sponsor do you think would best fit this game and why?

What do your IRL friends think about your Tetris skills? Do they ever give you crap if you have to finish doing something Tetris related before you can hang with them?

Thanks.
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ohitsstef
post Apr 21 2012, 04:56 AM
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QUOTE(Blink @ Apr 21 2012, 03:58 AM) *

Nice replies, I like your perspective. As admin of HD people usually come to me to talk about what's wrong with the community or just being negative in general with complaints that things are slowly dying. It's nice to see someone with a more positive look on things. Especially your #1 and #2.

Few more questions I've never asked you before:

What are your thoughts on the future of Tetris?

If Tetris ever becomes a sport, what sponsor do you think would best fit this game and why?

What do your IRL friends think about your Tetris skills? Do they ever give you crap if you have to finish doing something Tetris related before you can hang with them?

Thanks.


I hope to see more Tetris variants debuting, if not soon.. far far in the future. Tetris is such a classic game, I don't see it ever dying out. Now, as for where it's going to go in the "competitive multiplayer" market, it's hard to say. I hope to see it recognized more for the competitive aspect of it... more than the casual part of it at least. Once you enter the doors of competitive multiplayer Tetris, there's no going back to casual really.

If Tetris ever became a sport.. I think Nissan would be a great sponsor! Because Nissan sponsors Bleach (the anime) and I love Bleach.. and also their cars are sexy as fudge! (Not as sexy as Mercedes though)

My friends in real life say my Tetris skills are due to my piano skills. Grin.png I've played the piano since I was 3 so I'm naturally fast on my finger tips and you have to learn how to get used to different pianos for competitions and such... so maybe that helps me get used to different games? Who knows! But anyways, they think I'm a big nerd, which is alright. I'd rather be a nerd than a stupid chick. And no, they don't give me crap for putting time aside for Tetris ahead of them sometimes. I don't really do that very often. ^^;

Allltthouuggghhh - a few guys have given me crap for being better than them at Tetris. Lol because I introduce myself as a competitive Tetris player.. and then of course some guy(s) will say they're boss at Tetris. I'll beat them and then they'll say something like, "You have no life!" Psh, dude's trying to impress a girl with no life.. so unimpressive. Wink.png Right? hah


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Shuey
post May 23 2012, 05:45 PM
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Your 40L speed is beast! Grin.png


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ohitsstef
post May 23 2012, 07:39 PM
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Heart.png anxiety attacks during games

srs business


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ohitsstef
post Sep 17 2013, 09:23 PM
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hehheehe this made me laugh


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Sisu
post Mar 7 2015, 01:51 AM
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QUOTE
The first tetris game I played was Tetris PC. My dad used to come home after work and play that while I watched, but I didn't start playing it until my cousins came over to visit. They told me that the goal of the game was to build pretty castles

How? How did I ever think Tetris was about building a house?


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