Tron 2.0

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Tron 2.0
Developer(s)Monolith Productions
Lavastorm Analytics (mobile)
Climax LA (Xbox)
Publisher(s)Buena Vista Interactive
Walt Disney Internet Group (mobile)
Producer(s)Cliff Kamida
Garrett Price
Designer(s)Frank Rooke
Programmer(s)Kevin Stephens
Kevin Lambert
Artist(s)Eric Kohler
Matt Allen
Composer(s)Nathan Grigg
EngineLithtech Triton
Mac OS X
Mobile phone
Game Boy Advance
  • NA: August 26, 2003
  • EU: September 19, 2003
  • EU: November 14, 2003
  • NA: June 1, 2004
  • NA: November 21, 2003 (Light Cycles)
  • NA: May 12, 2004 (Discs of Tron)
Game Boy Advance
  • NA: October 20, 2004
  • EU: November 12, 2004
  • NA: November 4, 2004
  • EU: November 26, 2004
Genre(s)First-person shooter
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Tron 2.0 is a first-person shooter video game developed by Monolith Productions. The Microsoft Windows version of the game was released by Buena Vista Interactive on August 26, 2003. The Mac OS X version was released by MacPlay on April 21, 2004.

Bruce Boxleitner reprises his role from the original film as Alan Bradley. Cindy Morgan, who also starred in the original film, voices a new character Ma3a. Rebecca Romijn provides the voice of Mercury. A new 'light cycle' design was contributed to the game by Syd Mead. The game explained the Tron arcade game, which appears in-game, and film as based on Kevin Flynn's experiences inside ENCOM in the original film.

According to Tron creator Steven Lisberger and Tron: Legacy director Joseph Kosinski, Tron 2.0 is not part of the Tron movie canon.[1]


The story is centered around Alan's son Jethro ("Jet") Bradley. Since the film's events, ENCOM has been taken over by a company called fCON(NET) (Future Control Network/Industries). After talking with his father who is kidnapped while on the phone with Jet, Jet is digitized by Ma3a, Alan's AI computer system, to aid her against J.D. Thorne, an executive from fCON improperly digitized into the computer who is now a virus throughout the system. Jet is mistakenly identified as the source of the corruption and captured by Kernel, the systems security control program.

After deciding that Jet is corrupted, Kernel spares Jet on the recommendation of Mercury, another program tasked to help Ma3a, and Jet is sent to the lightcycles game program. After winning several matches, Jet escapes the match with Mercury's help. After they find Ma3a, the server, corrupted beyond saving, is reformatted resulting in Mercury's demise. Jet escapes to the Internet with Ma3a and an uncompiled copy of Tron Legacy, an update of the original 'Tron' program written by Alan Bradley to protect Ma3a. After finding a compiling program on the Internet, Thorne appears to kill Ma3a while the Tron code is compiled and attached to her program. During this, Jet receives a communication from Guest, the User who had assigned Mercury to help Jet. Accessing a video uplink, Jet realizes too late that Guest is his father Alan, locked in a storage closet by fCON's officers Baza, Popoff and Crowne, begging him not to compile the Legacy program. Legacy activates, revealing that its sole function is to kill any User in the digital world. Jet escapes, and fCON inadvertently saves him by capturing Ma3a in a search program.

Having recovered the correction algorithms necessary to digitize a human, Alan is sent to Thorne's corrupted server. Assisting the ICPs and Kernel, Jet reaches Thorne at the heart of the server and kills Kernel before he can destroy Thorne. Thorne, regaining a moment of lucidity, begs for forgiveness and tells Jet how to enter fCON's server.

Alan and Jet break into fCON's server, which the corporation is planning to use to distribute Datawraiths - digitized human hackers - across the worldwide information network. After Alan and Jet crash the server, the CEO of fCON (possibly Dillinger of the original film, though this is never confirmed) orders Baza, Popoff, and Crowne into the system themselves. Alan, wanting to verify the purity of the correction algorithms, removes them to inspect them as the three are digitized, resulting in a monstrous amalgam of the three, which chases Jet into the digitizing beam; whereupon Jet diverts the three out of the beam and escapes the computer.


The game, like the film, is set "inside" a computer and cheerfully uses and abuses computing conventions: players will find themselves in the flaming red environment of a firewall and the minimalistic white one of a PDA, battle viruses while fleeing a format, and wield a sniper rifle known as the LOL, additionally amplifying the damage with a skill called Megahurtz.

Programs in the systems also bear various names - ordinary programs have ordinary first names such as Frank_381 or Brian.exe, ICP programs have names resembling system tools such as servwatch.exe or sssys.dll, viruses have garbled names such as HA-HA-HA-0X0->??? or 0XFFOOXXOR (one of them is called Durandal, while another is (Ra*mpa^ncy), two obvious references to Marathon), resource hogs are named after parodies of popular software such as reelplyr.exe, netscope.exe or ImageShop5.0.exe, major viruses have script names such as viral_launcher.pyc and, and Datawraiths, being in essence digitized humans, feature email addresses such as or

The leveling / experience point is represented as software versioning, and skills are subroutines Jet must earn. Depending on the environment, the player can only arm himself with a given amount that fits in the available memory. If attacked by viruses, subroutines can get fragmented or infected, and cannot be used before Jet defragments or disinfects them. If Jet encounters a program unknown to him, he can port it to his own system. Communication between programs is done via I/O ports.

Jet can also find and read e-mail messages in certain systems, which partly reveal the game's background story, but also provide insight into the relationship between Alan and his son.


In addition to the Mac, the game was ported to mobile phones in two versions: the first, called Tron 2.0: Light Cycles, which was released on November 21, 2003; and the second, called Tron 2.0: Discs of Tron, which was released on May 12, 2004. The same game was later ported to the Xbox with significant changes to the single and, especially, the multiplayer modes. The Xbox version is titled Tron 2.0: Killer App. Changes to the single player mode include optional jumping sequences, and overall console-tailored controls. The real changes were made to the multiplayer modes. Added is up to sixteen player multiplayer disc arena, light cycles, or overRide modes for system link or Xbox Live. The new overRide mode allows for first person mayhem with the ability to ride light cycles at any time. There is also a version of Tron 2.0: Killer App for the Game Boy Advance that has a different story and gameplay elements from its Xbox counterpart. A version of the game was planned for the Gizmondo, but was canceled during development.


The single-player campaign takes place entirely inside the computer's world (though some cutscenes are shown of the ENCOM research laboratory). The goal of each level is generally to complete tasks and find keys ("permission bits") which allow access to the next level.

The design of the game's levels is linear; there are no choices about how to proceed or of what to say during the interactions with other characters. The levels feature energy bridges and gates, neon-glowing contours, vibrant colors, floating boxes and tiles, teleports and deep chasms. Jet will be harmed if he falls from a height (or killed if the height is great enough), or be crushed by certain moving objects in the digital world.

Jet begins with the disc weapon seen in the movie; but obtains other weapons similar to a shotgun, a submachine gun, a sniper rifle, and grenades. Ammunition for these new weapons is energy, which Jet can collect at various points during the game (an exception is the disc, which uses no energy in its basic form). The in-game names for these weapons are, respectively, disk, rod, mesh, and ball. The other weapons are upgrades of these basic weapons (called "primitives").

Jet's abilities are customizable, as his in-computer program earns "build counter" upgrades - when earning a level, Jet 0.0.0 becomes Jet 0.0.1, and so on. He acquires new abilities, and also the aforementioned weapons, in the form of "subroutines" held in "archive bins" scattered around the levels, and he has a limited number of memory slots in which to "install" these subroutines onto his person. Subroutines start out as alpha-grade software, but can be upgraded to beta and gold statuses, which both take up less space in memory and become more effective.

As he moves through the levels, Jet must engage many lower-tier enemies. Although none are particularly powerful, they usually appear in gangs, making them more of a threat. Among the regular levels, there are some with boss enemies.

Interspersed with the first-person-shooter levels are several light cycle races. As seen in the movie, these races are actually arena duels in which each light cycle attempts to destroy its opponents by driving them into its jetwall. The arenas contain 'improvements' (such as speed zones that affect the cycles' speed), more complex layouts with walls and other artifacts (instead of the "empty box" as seen in the movie), and power-ups that can be collected during races. In addition to Tron's regular light cycle, Jet can also gain access to the super light cycle that sports a more modern design and offers more speed. Tron 2.0 initially required the player to win the light cycle races in order to advance the campaign. Consumer feedback revealed that many felt the computer-controlled light cyclers were impossibly precise in their controls (turning at speeds a human could not, or boxing themselves in,for example), forcing players to wait for the enemy light cycles to destroy themselves. As a result, the vendor released a patch eliminating this rule.

The additional light cycle mode contains no campaign; instead, the player is presented with a choice of several light cycle arenas.


Tron 2.0 offers some multiplayer scenarios, both in campaign mode and in light cycle mode. Internet and LAN play are available, although the vendor does not recommend that the light cycle mode be used over the Internet due to its generally high lag.


Review scores
Game RevolutionB+[4]C+[5]
GameSpot6.1/10[6](LC) 6.9/10[7]
(DoT) 4.2/10[8]
GameSpy3/5 stars[11]4.5/5 stars[12]3.5/5 stars[13]
IGN7.8/10[14](DoT) 8/10[15]
(LC) 7/10[16]
Nintendo Power3.7/5[19]
OXM (US)6.9/10[20]
PC Gamer (US)91%[21]
The Cincinnati Enquirer4.5/5 stars[22]
The Times3/5 stars[23]
Aggregate scores
GameRankings67%[24](LC) 70%[25]
(DoT) 61%[26]

The PC version received "favorable" reviews, while the Game Boy Advance and Xbox versions received "average" reviews, according to the review aggregation website Metacritic.[29][30][31]

The Cincinnati Enquirer gave the PC version four-and-a-half stars out of five and said, "Whether or not you're a fan of the movie, TRON 2.0 oozes with style and substance. Developer Monolith Productions deserves credit for creating one of the finest and most unique PC games of the year to date."[22] Maxim gave the same console version a score of eight out of ten and called it "a must for those out there who still like their CGI old school."[32] However, The Times gave the Xbox version three stars out of five, saying that "The controls take some time to master, and there's a surfeit of useless jargon seemingly designed to prevent you getting to grips with the gameplay. Nor is this a game for the short-sighted, since the on-screen captions that supposedly offer guidance are minute and virtually illegible."[23]

Despite the good reviews, the PC version underperformed in sales and BVG eventually dropped support for the game two years after it was released.[33] Despite the lack of support from BVG, additional levels and multiplayer maps have been developed by fans of the game, including an expansion game and modification.[citation needed]

Slave Labor Graphics produced a Tron 2.0 comic book sequel miniseries called Tron: The Ghost in the Machine.[citation needed]

Computer Games Magazine named Tron 2.0 the fourth-best computer game of 2003, and presented it with awards for "Best Sound Effects" and "Best Art Direction", the latter of which it shared with Uru: Ages Beyond Myst. The editors called Tron 2.0 "easily one of the year's best looking games, and a textbook example of how graphics rely just as much on art design as they do technology."[34] The editors of Computer Gaming World nominated Tron 2.0 for their 2003 "Shooter of the Year" and overall "Game of the Year" awards, which ultimately went to Call of Duty and Knights of the Old Republic, respectively.[35] It was also nominee for PC Gamer US's 2003 "Best Action Game" award, although it lost again to Call of Duty. The editors declared it "a movie license done right".[36]


  1. ^ Merrick (March 1, 2010). "TRON LEGACY: Cool Details From L.A.'s Post-Trailer Q&A! First Film Coming On Blu-Ray? Info Re: Disney's Promo Plans! More!!". Ain't It Cool News. Retrieved October 19, 2011.
  2. ^ Martin Taylor (September 1, 2003). "Tron 2.0". Eurogamer. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  3. ^ Kristan Reed (December 8, 2004). "TRON 2.0: Killer App (Xbox)". Eurogamer. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  4. ^ Ben Silverman (August 2003). "Tron 2.0 Review". Game Revolution. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  5. ^ Mike Reilly (December 2, 2004). "Tron 2.0: Killer App Review (Xbox)". Game Revolution. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  6. ^ Frank Provo (December 2, 2004). "Tron 2.0: Killer App Review (GBA)". GameSpot. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  7. ^ Avery Score (January 1, 2004). "Tron 2.0: Light Cycles Review". GameSpot. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  8. ^ Damon Brown (July 29, 2004). "Tron 2.0: Discs of Tron review". GameSpot. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  9. ^ Scott Osborne (August 27, 2003). "Tron 2.0 Review". GameSpot. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  10. ^ Bob Colayco (November 9, 2004). "Tron 2.0: Killer App Review (Xbox)". GameSpot. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  11. ^ Bryan Stratton (November 10, 2004). "GameSpy: Tron 2.0: Killer App (GBA)". GameSpy. Archived from the original on December 16, 2005. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  12. ^ Sal Accardo (August 27, 2003). "GameSpy: TRON 2.0". GameSpy. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  13. ^ Russ Fischer (November 9, 2004). "GameSpy: Tron 2.0 Killer App (Xbox)". GameSpy. Archived from the original on December 26, 2005. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  14. ^ Craig Harris (October 28, 2004). "Tron 2.0: Killer App (GBA)". IGN. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  15. ^ Levi Buchanan (June 4, 2004). "[Tron 2.0:] Discs of TRON". IGN. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  16. ^ Levi Buchanan (December 3, 2003). "Tron 2.0: Light Cycles". IGN. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  17. ^ Dan Adams (August 22, 2003). "TRON 2.0 Review". IGN. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  18. ^ Douglass C. Perry (November 2, 2004). "Tron 2.0: Killer App (Xbox)". IGN. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  19. ^ "Tron 2.0: Killer App". Nintendo Power. 185: 131. November 2004.
  20. ^ "Tron 2.0: Killer App". Official Xbox Magazine: 78. January 2005.
  21. ^ Chuck Osborn (November 2003). "Tron 2.0". PC Gamer: 96. Archived from the original on March 19, 2006. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  22. ^ a b Marc Saltzman (August 5, 2003). "Stylish TRON 2.0 is filled with action". The Cincinnati Enquirer. Archived from the original on October 1, 2007. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  23. ^ a b "Tron 2.0: Killer App (Xbox)". The Times. January 22, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2016.(subscription required)
  24. ^ "Tron 2.0: Killer App for Game Boy Advance". GameRankings. CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  25. ^ "Tron 2.0: Light Cycles for Mobile". GameRankings. CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  26. ^ "Tron 2.0: Discs of Tron for Mobile". GameRankings. CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  27. ^ "Tron 2.0 for PC". GameRankings. CBS Interactive. Retrieved May 8, 2014.
  28. ^ "Tron 2.0: Killer App for Xbox". GameRankings. CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  29. ^ a b "Tron 2.0: Killer App for Game Boy Advance Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  30. ^ a b "Tron 2.0 for PC Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved March 9, 2010.
  31. ^ a b "Tron 2.0: Killer App for Xbox Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  32. ^ Alex Porter (August 26, 2003). "Tron 2.0". Maxim. Archived from the original on September 5, 2003. Retrieved July 19, 2016.
  33. ^ "Tron 2.0 News". Tron Sector. Archived from the original on March 15, 2010. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  34. ^ Staff (March 2004). "Best of 2003; The 13th Annual Awards". Computer Games Magazine (160): 58–62.
  35. ^ Editors of CGW (March 2004). "Computer Gaming World's 2003 Games of the Year". Computer Gaming World (236): 57–60, 62–69.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  36. ^ Staff (March 2004). "The 10th Annual PC Gamer Awards". PC Gamer US. 11 (3): 38–40, 42, 44, 45.

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