Table of contents

Basic Tetris rules

There are seven different Tetris pieces which all consist of four square blocks, hence the name Tetris. During the game these pieces will appear in random order at the top of your playfield and then they'll start to fall down. You are able to rotate them and move them left or right. When the piece reaches the bottom of your playfield or hits another piece on the field it stops moving and another piece will appear at the top of the playfield. You lose the game if a piece that was set reaches over the top of your playfield. You can prevent this by deleting lines. If a horizontal line of your field is completely filled with parts of pieces you dropped the line will be deleted and the whole playfield above this line moves down accordingly. The longer you play the game the faster the pieces will fall.

The game screen


Playing against others

Playing Tetris alone can be fun, but Cultris was specially designed to be most entertaining when you play against others. The problem here won't be the speed of the pieces but the other players, because they will send you garbage-lines and you will send them. Garbage-lines are horizontal lines of grey blocks that are inserted from the bottom of your playfield, pushing all other blocks on your field upwards, and by that making it harder for you to survive or making it even impossible. Every garbage-line has one hole in it, so you are able to delete these lines as well.

Sending garbage lines

Basically there are two ways to send garbage-lines to another player. One is by deleting more than one line with a single piece. You'll always send the number of lines you deleted minus one to another player. With the green single-line piece you can delete up to 4 lines with a single piece, so you can send up to 3 garbage-lines to another player that way. Now 3 lines is not very threatening, is it? That's why there is another way to send lines to an opponent, a lot more. The other way is doing combos.


Combos are what Cultris is all about. Every time you delete a line you will see that you get some time on your Combo-Timer. If you delete lines again before the time runs out your combo-counter will rise. If you delete more than one Line you'll get more time. Your combo-counter determines how many lines you send to your opponent in addition to the normal amount. The amount of additional lines you get is about half the combo-counter. An example: Your combo-counter is 0 you delete 4 lines. Now you will send 3 lines to an opponent and you get some Combo-Time and your Combo-Counter becomes 1. If you delete now 3 lines before your Combo-Time runs out you will send 3 lines to the opponent (two from normal line deletion and one from the Combo).


You can't choose your target yourself. The game chooses always the player that got the least amount of lines during this round. That way the amount of lines everyone gets should be about the same. During a combo your target never changes unless that opponent goes game over.

How to block garbage lines

You probably noticed during a game or just by reading this manual that the amount of garbage you receive can be a lot more than just the 18 lines you have on your playfield. But that doesn't mean that you can't do anything against this. You are able to block incoming lines before they even enter your playfield. Below your Combo-Counter and your Combo-Timer is a small grey space. That's the garbage container. Garbage lines sent to you don't enter your field immediately but are sent into this container, every line is represented by a small grey block. The next time you drop a piece without deleting a line, all the garbage waiting in this container will be added to your playfield. But if you drop a piece and delete a line with it, you don't send lines to an opponent but you delete waiting garbage first, and then send the rest (if there is any) to your target.


Our scoring system works like the ELO rating system in chess. If you beat a weak player your score increases only a bit (and vice-versa). Only winning counts - BPM, etc. are not considered in the calculation.

Dedicated servers

Cultris can also be run in dedicated mode. That means that you can host games without playing (and on computers without a decent graphics card).

Running a dedicated server has the following benefits:

  • Doesn't use much CPU or RAM
  • Configuration file
  • In game commands
  • Webinterface

We recommend that only tech-savvy people setup dedicated servers. To start the dedicated server you should pass the command-line parameter /dedicated to Cultris.

Configuration file

When first starting up, the server creates the configuration file dedicated.ini in the current directory. You can stop the server now and make the configuration file suit your needs. When you're done you can start the server again - the server now uses the new configuration.

The default configuration-file looks like this:

#Cultris dedicated server settings file
#See for a detailed description.
#1 = Yes; 0 = No; All times in seconds
welcome=Welcome to my dedicated server


Name Values Description
internetgame 1 = yes
0 = no
Act as an internet server and create a public game
langame 1 = yes
0 = no
Act as a LAN server
maxbpm 50 - 120 = speed limited
0 = unlimited
Allow only slow players on this server
guiinterface 1 = yes
0 = no
Enable the log-window
webinterface 1 = yes
0 = no
Use the web interface
webport 1 - 65535 TCP port of the web interface
servername max. 20 chars Name of the server
welcome   This text will be shown to each joining player
statisticswaittime 1 - 60 Time between two rounds in seconds
username   Username of the administrator
password   Password of the administrator

It is recommended that you only enable either internetgame or langame - not both at the same time.

Ingame commands

To use the ingame commands you have to start Cultris and join your servers game like any other player. Before you can send any commands you have to login as administrator. You can do that by using the */login* command. Be sure to write "/login" and not something else - otherwise it's regular chat text and everyone will see your login credentials.


/login username password Login as administrator
/logout Logout from the server. No commands will be accepted anymore
/time seconds Defines the time between two rounds
/chat text Sends a blue server chat-message
/kick player Kick a player. If two players have the same name, both get kicked.
/newround Abort the current round and start a new one
/restart Restart the server
/shutdown Shut the server down

Web interface

When you have activated the web interface you can manage the server with a normal web browser. Just point your browser to http://serverip:webport and you'll see the login screen. After logging in you can manage the server.