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Postmortem: Monolith's TRON 2.0

September 10, 2003 Article Start Page 1 of 3 Next
 

From the start, it didn't take long for many of us at Monolith to recognize that a TRON project was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, not simply because we believed the film would lend itself to great gameplay, but also because of the movie's status as a
cultural icon. As a high school student at the time of the original theatrical release, I remember it piquing my interest in computers and videogames. Whether at the time I fully realized the film's impact or not, it certainly planted seeds that flourished later in my life. Since the start of the project, I've spoken to many people about TRON, and I repeatedly get the same kind of story: "It's why I'm into computers," "It's why I'm into 3D graphics," "It's why I'm into gaming."


Our intrepid hero, Jet.

When Buena Vista Interactive, the core games publishing label of Buena Vista Games, approached Monolith with the TRON project, they were quite up-front about the challenges facing the franchise. While everyone readily agreed it would make a great computer game, generating interest for a title based on a 20-year-old cult classic film that was released ahead of its time might be difficult. Regardless, the project moved forward with great enthusiasm from both Monolith and Buena Vista Interactive. The fact that the game could possibly pave the way for a new TRON film and reignite the franchise was very exciting, injecting a unique motivation into the project that Monolith didn't take lightly.

Overall, TRON 2.0 is a first-person action game that takes place in the digital universe established by the 1982 film TRON. It's important to note that the game does not follow the events seen in the film. Instead, it is a spiritual sibling, or something of a sequel. The core premise of a society mirroring our own that exists in the computer remains intact, as does the phenomenon of a human transporting (or digitizing, as we say in the game) into the computer. Beyond that, the TRON 2.0 universe breaks new ground. Analogies, metaphors, and social consequences reflect how we understand and position computers in our lives today as well as where they may be in the near future. The game tells only one story of a hundred possible stories, making the TRON universe much like the Star Wars and Star Trek universes in that respect. It's this singular quality that makes the TRON franchise timeless.


Mercury, jet cycle champion of the digital world.



Article Start Page 1 of 3 Next

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