New NES Tetris technique for fast tapping

In this post, as an exercise, I will try to summarize the video New NES Tetris Technique: Faster Than Hypertapping!.

In NES Tetris, fast piece movement is essential for the very last levels when the pieces fall really fast. The normal way to move pieces left and right is by holding down left or right on the D pad, but that has a built in delay (known as DAS) before the piece starts moving at the max speed for holding down, which is around 10 Hz. This is similar to holding down a key on a computer keyboard: it takes a while to start repeating the key quickly, and even then, it doesn’t repeat that fast.

If you tap the D pad instead of holding down, the piece moves quickly – for all practical purposes, it moves as fast as you can tap – and without any delay. Until recently, the only known way to tap really quickly in NES Tetris was a technique known as “hypertapping”. To hypertap, you just tap a finger on the D pad really fast. However, hypertapping is strenuous and hard to learn.

In late 2020, a Tetris player called Cheez_Fish discovered a way to apply to NES Tetris an arcade game technique for fast button pressing called “rolling”. Rolling is faster than hypertapping and easier on the hands. Cheez_Fish’s version of rolling works by tapping the back of the controller with multiple fingers. This causes the controller to bounce against his thumb, which he holds steady against the D pad.

In November 2020, Cheez_Fish posted a video of him getting 20+ taps per second with rolling (3:55 in the video). The video says this is “faster than even the fastest hypertappers”. Cheez_Fish soon developed his skill to a level where he could use it in competitions. In March 2021, Cheez_Fish got the first score over 1.3 million and became the first person to get 4 Tetrises on level 29. On April 5, 2021, “Cheez set a new world for highest score on a level 29 start with 259,000 in probably one of the most impressive NES Tetris games of all time.”

Other people have started to learn rolling. The video announcer himself tries it and has a bit of success.

I guess that you mean that hypertapping is strenuous/hard to learn (and the reason that lots of pros don’t/didn’t use it[1]) is because of the difficulty of integrating it with normal tetris gameplay, not because tapping fast in isolation is necessarily hard. (granted, 20hz tapping is hard in itself, but it’s not as hard as doing that while playing tetris, esp at like lvl 28 or w/e.) IMO that’s an important detail.

I might be wrong about that, but I know of hypertapping, and the above is my best guess at a problem with your summary. (also mb relevant context: I learnt about the rolling technique via this vid a few days ago, which seems to be a follow up to the vid you posted.)

That said, I am making that judgement based in part on my general knowledge, so mb it’s a reasonably summary of the vid if it omits those details.

  1. IDK if ~all pros use it now, but I know it shook the meta when it was introduced ↩︎

At the end of the video I linked Rob Scallon said “rest in peace Jonas” and he died earlier this year :cry:. I hadn’t fully watched that video and didn’t know.

On January 5, 2021, Neubauer died at the age of 39 from a sudden medical emergency, from which he had collapsed and never regained consciousness. His death was announced four days later on all of his social media pages.[21][22] On April 2, the cause of death was diagnosed as “sudden cardiac death due to cardiac arrhythmia of undetermined [cause]”.[23]

I understood the video to be saying that tapping fast itself was hard to learn and strenuous, aside from however hard it might be to integrate tapping fast with gameplay. From the YouTube auto-generated transcript (emphasis added):

… the only alternative [to DAS] that could gain a real advantage was hypertapping which required you to tap your finger on the d-pad at around 12 times per second or faster, which obviously a lot of people can’t do. From 2010 to 2017 DAS players dominated because the venn diagram of people who played NES tetris at a high level and also could hypertap was like 3 people.

I used a bit of editorial judgment to convert “can’t do” to “hard to learn”. The video transcript later says:

… the thing that really sets rolling apart from hypertapping is, when you’re tapping at your upper limits, you’re really straining yourself, but when you hit a fast roll, it just feels effortless.

For summary practice, try posting a list of things you excluded from the summary, and some of your reasoning about why you included or excluded some things.

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Off topic: Does it notify you @Alisa when I edit your post? (I added the “practice” tag.) It does show up in the edit history (to view, click the orange pencil icon with count of changes next to it).

Yes, it notified me when you added the tag.