2023 Classic Tetris World Championship: Prize pool, schedule, and how to watch

The top NES Tetris players in the world return to Portland, Oregon to crown a world champion.


The 2023 Classic Tetris World Championship is back for another year. The world's best Tetris players have all gathered at this year's Portland Retro Gaming Expo in Portland, Oregon for a chance to compete for the top crown. While Tetris for the original NES is taking center stage, there are other competitions behind held as well. Shacknews has everything you need to know.

What are the rules to the Classic Tetris World Championship tournament?

Players will compete in the original 8-bit NES Tetris (not the Tengen version). NES consoles, Tetris cartridges, and NES controllers will all be provided to participants. The option to bring a controller is available, but it must be a standard, unmodified NES controller, NES "dog bone" controller, Hyperkin "Cadet" style controller, or "Goofy Foot" style controller. The entry fee is $50 USD, which entitles entrants to a live two-hour qualifying session. The goal is to gain the highest score possible in Type-A Tetris.

The qualifying round is set to begin on Friday from 12:00 p.m.-9:15 p.m. PT. Players will start their qualifying attempts on Type-A Tetris on Level 9 and go from there. Upon maxing out, players must alert a judge on-hand to record the score.

While there is a 9+ hour window for qualifiers to attempt to advance to the bracketed Sunday tournament, there are several players who have already advanced to the bracketed round based on prior results at previous Tetris competitions.

For more details on the rules, visit the CTWC website.

How much is the 2023 Classic Tetris World Championship prize pool?

The 2023 Classic Tetris World Championship will award over $10,000 USD in cash. Prize allocation will be determined by the CTWC as the tournament progresses.

Tetris Effect: Connected side tournaments will also be held on-site at the Portland Retro Gaming Expo. Please note that this won't count towards the Tetris Effect: Connected World Championship. The TECWC 2023 will hold its finals later this month.

How to Watch the 2023 Classic Tetris World Championship

All of this weekend's festivities can be viewed from the Classic Tetris and Classic Tetris 2 Twitch channels.

Here is the full schedule for this weekend (All times PT):

Classic Tetris World Championship 2023 schedule

Source: CTWC

How to watch the 2023 Classic Tetris World Championship VODs

The top matches from throughout the weekend will be posted in full on the Classic Tetris YouTube channel, all of which can be viewed on demand.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

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