Last month, 13-year-old Willis Gibson accomplished what many gamers considered impossible – he became the first person to ever “beat” the original 1988 Nintendo version of Tetris. But when Sky News anchor Jayne Secker covered his historic gaming achievement live on air, she raised eyebrows by dismissing his accomplishment and telling the Oklahoma teen that he should “go outside.”
The Teen Who Beat Tetris
On January 2nd, Willis Gibson, who streams under the handle “Blue Scuti“, posted footage on his YouTube channel showing the climactic moment when he finally reached the end of the famously endless Tetris video game several days earlier on December 21, 2023.
In the gaming world, this was akin to conquering Mount Everest. Tetris programmers had deliberately designed the classic puzzle game to be unbeatable by adding an endlessly increasing difficulty level. So when Gibson beat Tetris by reaching its “kill screen” and earning the maximum possible points in the game, he claimed a title that no other gamer in 36 years had managed to achieve. He became the first person, ever, to beat Tetris.
Even Tetris’ parent company recognized Gibson’s feat as monumental. “Congratulations to ‘blue scuti’ for achieving this extraordinary accomplishment, a feat that defies all preconceived limits of this legendary game,” said Maya Rogers, CEO of Tetris.
Sky News Anchor Jayne Secker Tells Historic Tetris Winner to “Go Outside”
Beating Tetris was a big deal, and not just with gamers. Within days of posting the livestream video of him beating Tetris online, Gibson was getting interview requests from news media around the world. But not all of this news coverage was positive. Gibson’s interview with Jane Secker on Sky News has raised eyebrows. “As a mother, I would just say step away from the screen,” she remarked. “Go outside, get some fresh air. Beating Tetris is not a life goal.”
Her flippant comments immediately sparked backlash from gamers, online personalities, YouTubers, and youth advocates.
“It disappoints me when the older generation looks condescendingly at the passions and accomplishments of young people,” said Walt Ribeiro, the popular YouTuber behind For Orchestra.
Dismissing the significance of reaching gaming milestones reveals an ignorance about why these moments resonate meaningfully among gaming communities.
“It’s basically rocked the whole world of gaming and for somebody of such a young age to be able to achieve what nobody has been able to do? It’s an incredible feat,” Nikolas Syrimis, a popular Twitch streamer who uses the handle Nikoheart, told the BBC.
Willis Gibson Is Unfazed By Tetris Hater Jayne Secker’s Unprofessional Comments
For his part, Gibson appeared unfazed by Secker’s nasty criticism, saying he was “very happy” to obtain proof that he’d conquered what was considered an unbeatable game. And the wider gaming world stands with Gibson, holding his Tetris triumph up as an example of innovation, determination and skill.
So while Jane Secker may be a Tetris hater and not see the value in mastering 80s video games, it’s clear that for Gibson, his historic gaming victory is very much a life goal achieved. And young Willis can hold his head high knowing he accomplished something no one else could in over 30 years of trying.
Frank Wilson is a retired teacher with over 30 years of combined experience in the education, small business technology, and real estate business. He now blogs as a hobby and spends most days tinkering with old computers. Wilson is passionate about tech, enjoys fishing, and loves drinking beer.