Tetris in the sky: Gamers play on Philly building (Update)

Apr 05, 2014 by Kathy Matheson
The classic video game Tetris is played on the 29-story Cira Centre in Philadelphia, Saturday, April 5, 2014, using hundreds of LED lights embedded in its glass facade. The spectacle kicks off a citywide series of events called Philly Tech Week and also celebrates the upcoming 30th anniversary of Tetris. (AP Photo/ Joseph Kaczmarek)

A skyscraper-sized version of the classic video game Tetris in Philadelphia created a spectacle that organizers hope inspired onlookers and players to think about the possibilities of technology.

The 29-story Cira Centre has hundreds of LED lights embedded in its glass facade and provided a 100,000-square-foot "screen" for the gamers on Saturday. Competitors used joysticks to maneuver Images of supersized shapes that "fell" on the tower.

The marvel kicked off a citywide series of events called Philly Tech Week. It also celebrates the upcoming 30th anniversary of Tetris, a game loved for its elegance and simplicity.

Game designer Frank Lee says that putting Tetris on a building was like making a huge virtual campfire. The associate professor of digital media at Drexel University called it a way to unite the city.

The classic video game Tetris is played on the 29-story Cira Centre in Philadelphia, Saturday April 5, 2014, using hundreds of LED lights embedded in its glass facade. The spectacle kicks off a citywide series of events called Philly Tech Week and also celebrates the upcoming 30th anniversary of Tetris. (AP Photo/ Joseph Kaczmarek)

Frank Lee, right, a Drexel University game-design professor, and game designer Henk Rogers, center, play the classic video game Tetris on the 29-story Cira Centre in Philadelphia, Saturday, April 5, 2014, using hundreds of LED lights embedded in its glass facade. The spectacle kicks off a citywide series of events called Philly Tech Week and also celebrates the upcoming 30th anniversary of Tetris. (AP Photo/ Joseph Kaczmarek)

Frank Lee, right, a Drexel University game-design professor, and game designer Henk Rogers play the classic video game Tetris on the 29-story Cira Centre in Philadelphia, Saturday April 5, 2014, using hundreds of LED lights embedded in its glass facade. The spectacle kicks off a citywide series of events called Philly Tech Week and also celebrates the upcoming 30th anniversary of Tetris. (AP Photo/ Joseph Kaczmarek)

The classic video game Tetris is played on the 29-story Cira Centre in Philadelphia, Saturday, April 5, 2014, using hundreds of LED lights embedded in its glass facade. The spectacle kicks off a citywide series of events called Philly Tech Week and also celebrates the upcoming 30th anniversary of Tetris. (AP Photo/ Joseph Kaczmarek)


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