In terms of frames, how much faster is a soft drop in Tetris for the NES?

Like, on level 0, the piece moves down one cell every 48 frames. When you soft drop the piece, is there a specific equation for how fast it falls?

Like, if x = the normal frames between cell drop and y = the frames between each cell drop during a soft drop, is there an equation for y in terms of x?

3 Answers 3


Soft drop speed is twice as fast as normal gravity (or =1/2G). So on level 0, where normal gravity is one cell per 48 frames, soft drop is one cell per 24 frames.


  • I don't actually own an NES so I've just been using a version of NES Tetris on the internet so I don't know super well but the internet seems to say that on level 6, normal gravity is every 23 frames, so about 24. Does that mean that a soft drop on level 0 is almost the same as normal gravity on level 6 because that seems kind of slow?
    – user203619
    Jan 15, 2018 at 5:46
  • I guess? I've never played the game, I just knew a good source with numbers.
    – Toomai
    Jan 15, 2018 at 11:39
  • 2
    yeah I've been to that website and thought it seemed a little slow. I actually just thought of something. Gravity is measured in frames right? like 1G is 1 cell per frame, 20G is like 20 cells per frame, etc. so what if when it says 1/2G, it means half a cell per frame (or rather 1 cell per 2 frames) no matter what level you're on?
    – user203619
    Jan 16, 2018 at 3:01

On NES Tetris, the gravity of soft drop is 1/2G, which means it drops 1 block every 2 frames, equal to the gravity on Level 19. This applies until Level 29, where the gravity goes faster than soft drop. In that situation, soft drop doesn't do anything other than add a bit of score.


Tetris NES89 NTSC(60FPS)
Level 0 normal gravity every 48 frames 1 cell, softdrop every 2 frames 1 cell

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