Earlier that day, after lunch at a mutual friend’s house, Pajitnov, 58, was eager to have us take turns driving his Tesla through the placid suburbs of Bellevue, Washington, where he lives, urging us on to bursts of acceleration that left momentary feelings of weightlessness in my chest every time the road dipped.


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard


A quick web search for “Alexey Pajitnov” brings up ​pages of articles and interviews that fixate only on his creation of Tetris—a work that remains, far and away, the best selling video game of all time. But clearly, there’s more to the man than just Tetris. Meeting Pajitnov himself led me to wonder about, well, everything else. What was the Tetris-less life of Alexey Pajitnov?


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard

私たちがランチをした日は、スコット津村さんがエグゼクティブ・プロデューサーを務めるトーザイ・ゲーム(Tozai Games)の社長、シーラ・ボートンさんも同席していたのですが、スコットさんやシーラさんはアレクセイさんがロシアからアメリカに移住する手助けをしていて、世に知られざるアレクセイの姿をたくさん知っていらっしゃいます。そこでジェガーさんは後日、アレクセイさん本人とシーラさん、そしてスコットさんを取材しました。

Boughton entered the video game industry through the now-defunct ​Bullet-Pro​of Software, where her very first task was to coordinate with American and Russian immigration in the early 90s so that Pajitnov could move to the US and join the team at Bullet-Proof, which sponsored his work visa.


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard




アレクセイさんは、アメリカへ移住前は国営のソ連科学アカデミー(Academy of Science in Moscow)で働いていました。


“We didn’t have any room at all,” he said, laughing. “I shared my desk with three other people. So I’d leave my work for late hours, because my desk would be vacated.”


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard


Tetris was formally released in June 1984 by the Academy of Sciences, after initially spreading among academics and the computer literate by way of copied floppy disks. As a tile-fitting puzzler, Tetris captivated these members of intelligentsia. After all, here was a game constructed of pristine shapes taken straight from Platonic idealism.


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard

テトリスはその後、1988年にラスベガスで開催された『Consumer Electronics Show』で、株式会社ビーピーエスの創設者、ヘンク・ロジャース氏に発見されます。株式会社ビーピーエスを通じて、テトリスは1989年にアメリカで発売。

Because it was made during work hours on a government computer, the Soviet government ​claimed all​ rights both to Tetris and to the untold millions in royalties that eventually rolled in. So, despite his sudden international recognition as a developer, Pajitnov remained essentially a working Joe when he joined up with Rogers and Bullet-Proof, immigrating to America in 1990 on the work visa they sponsored. Six months later, Pajitnov brought his wife, Nina, and sons, Peter and Dmitri, to Bellevue, Washington.


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard



It was Boughten who further helped Pajitnov acclimate to his new life. She set up his dentist appointments. She helped him understand the reasoning behind a hefty ticket he found under his wiper after he’d left a rented Cadillac parked at a fire hydrant for three days. She helped him rebut a plenitude of fast-talking businessmen drawn to the heat of his fame.


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard

1996年、ソ連解体にともなってテトリスの権利がアレクセイさんに移譲されたのと同時期に、アレクセイさんは Xbox が誕生する前のマイクロソフトに入社し、ゲームデザインを手がけるようになります。

Then Microsoft started developing the Xbox. “That was very unfortunate for me. I’m interested in puzzle games. And Xbox wasn’t for puzzles,” he said. “I tried to find as peaceful a title as possible to work on. I don’t like shooting games.”

(やがてマイクロソフトは Xbox の開発を開始。「私にとっては非常に不運でした。私はパズルゲームに興味があるのに、Xbox はパズルを楽しむものではなかったからです」と彼は語る。「私はできるだけ平和的な名前のゲームに関わろうとしました。シューティングゲームは好きではありません。」)

The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard


When he does sit down to design, Pajitnov doesn’t need a computer. “I usually use a notepad and pencils to design something,” he said. “Then the evening comes. I either go play tennis, or go work out at the club, or sit at home and either watch TV or read books. And that’s my day. Nothing very exciting or exceptional.”


The Man Who Made ‘Tetris’ | Motherboard

この記事は、テトリスの公式 Twitter にもリツイートされています。





VICE JAPAN によってジェガーさんの記事が日本語に翻訳されていました!これで日本語でも読めますー!