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Designer(s) Andreas Umbach
Platform(s) OS X(OS X 10.7+ currently unsupported), Mac OS 9, Linux, Windows, MorphOS, Symbian, Android
Genre(s) Snake game

GLtron is a 3D snake game based on the light cycle portion of the film Tron.[1] The game is free and open-source software and has been ported to many mobile and non-mobile operating systems such as Windows, MacOS, Symbian[2] and Android[3] over the years.


After being originally a private university project by Andreas Umbach in June 1998, the game's open source development started when the source code was put to Sourceforge around 2000 under the GPLv2 software license. The game's soundtrack features the track Revenge of the Cats, which was composed and performed by Finnish musician Peter Hajba, who is also known by his demoscene nickname Skaven.[4] Development and ports to news platforms systems goes on until today by the game's community.


GLTron screenshot: Light cycle and trail

The aim of the game is to be the last player riding. Cycles can be boosted with a limited turbo. There are various gameplay styles, including switching the gameplay from "booster" to "wall accel." to "both". "Booster" has an extra button for boosting, in addition to the standard left, right, glance left, glance right buttons, while "Wall ride" increases a player's light cycle's speed automatically depending on how close they are to an opponent's wall. "Both" incorporates both options for increasing the player's light cycle's speed.

There are several arena sizes that can be selected, from "tiny" (which is best for two players on normal speed or people practicing their reflexes with 3 "mcp himself" difficulty-level bots on "crazy" speed) to "vast".

The game is played using the keyboard to control the vehicle and the mouse to control the camera position, players can out ride competitors across the geometric grid.


In 2006, GLTron was recommended by The Mac Observer for its graphics and sound, considered good for a free software game, and support for different screen resolutions and input devices.[1] Other reviews were positive too,[5][6] for instance The Linux Game Tome gave 4/5 stars.[7]

The game was ported to multiple systems like Linux, Windows, MacOS as also mobile systems that have support for OpenGL ES like Symbian,[8] Android,[9] and as also the OpenPandora handheld.[10] Gltron was downloaded between 2000 and 2016 1,500,000 times from Sourceforge alone,[11] while it is also packaged with many Linux distributions like Debian.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Chris Barylick (September 11, 2006). "The Slacker's Guide - Something Cool For the Nerds: GLTron". The Mac Observer. Retrieved 2008-11-12. 
  2. ^ "Symbian Port". 2011-01-26. Retrieved 2011-01-26. 
  3. ^ "GL TRON". Google Play. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  4. ^ "GLtron related links". Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  5. ^ GLTron Reviewed by Cord Kruse on (September 12, 2006)
  6. ^ 102 Games That Are: Free To Own on
  7. ^ gltron on The Linux Game Tome (2012-12-15, archived)
  8. ^ "Symbian Port". Retrieved 2011-01-26. 
  9. ^ "GL TRON". Google Play. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  10. ^ gltron on
  11. ^ gltron - stats on
  12. ^ gltron on

External links[edit]