The Tetris Movie’s Main Character Also Made A Hugely Important Role-Playing Game

Apr 18, 2023

According to its description on Apple TV, the new film Tetris is the story of “American video game salesman Henk Rogers (Taron Egerton) and his discovery of Tetris in 1988.” Now, I’m no Tetris historian, so I don’t know quite where the true story of the hard-fought negotiations for the rights to publish the world-famous puzzle game ends and the movie’s efforts to drum up suspense with espionage-movie thrills begin.

But I do know one thing about the real Henk Rogers that the film, understandably, does not tell us: He was much more than just a “video game salesman.” At his company, Bullet-Proof Software, he led development on a role-playing game that played a crucial role in the popularization of computer RPGs in Japan, without which the advent of JRPGs via series like Final Fantasy may have looked very different.

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