Anniversary: The Most Famous Version Of Tetris Is 35 Today 1
Image: Damien McFerran / Time Extension

While Tetris well over 35 years old, arguably the most significant version of the game hits that milestone today.

The Game Boy version of Tetris – which was subject to a heated rights battle (recently turned into a movie by Apple) and effectively helped the handheld become a million-selling commercial success – launched in Japan on June 14th, 1989.

A stand-alone release in the territory, it would become a pack-in title for the North American and European releases, a fact which not only helped boost sales of the handheld but also turned Tetris into one of the best-selling games of all time.

As of 2009, it had sold 35 million physical copies and will have sold many more since then via digital services, such as the 3DS Virtual Console.

While Henk Rogers' Bullet Proof Software is mentioned on the game's startup screen, the Game Boy version of Tetris was actually developed in-house, with Satoru Okada directing, Gunpei Yokoi producing and Hirofumi Matsuoka handling design. Hirokazu Tanaka was in charge of the music. Bullet Proof Software was the rights holder for the game.

Tetris continues to be a popular title with modern audiences, with titles like Tetris Effect and Tetris 99 gaining rave reviews – but the Game Boy version will always have a special place in our hearts.

Did you grow up with the Game Boy version of Tetris? (88 votes)

  1. Yes86%
  2. No3%
  3. No, but I love it anyway10%
  4. What's Tetris?  0%