A companion to the TRON 2.0 Unofficial FAQ that provides up-to-date
news about the TRON 2.0 gaming community and TRON in general.





Click here to download the TRON 2.0 Multiplayer Fix

If you're having trouble with the TRON 2.0: Killer App Mod
Read this Troubleshooting Guide




BVG Servers Gone For Good

By TronFAQ on Friday, March 31, 2006 at 2:49 PM
UPDATE: There's something I wanted to add, based on a message post I read somewhere.

The fact that BVG took down their servers, DOES NOT mean you can no longer play TRON 2.0 Multiplayer. There are still servers being run by fans. There are people still playing online. But you need to install a Multiplayer Fix before trying to go online.


As if this came as any big surprise.

Fellow LDSO member Win3K took the opportunity to e-mail BVG (Buena Vista Games), to ask about the status of their TRON 2.0 Multiplayer servers. Here's the response from BVG customer support.

Thank you for writing.

There are currently no dedicated servers available for the game and no plans to bring them back in the future. All multiplayer games, if any are available, are currently being hosted by individuals who own the software. To view any multiplayer games currently available online, you will need the most current update available from our website at:

http://a.disney.go.com/adownload/bvg/support/
tron_update_v1x042c.exe

If you have any additional questions, comments or concerns please do not hesitate to let me know. When writing include all prior correspondence in your e-mail reply.

Sincerely,

BVG Mark Escarcega

Buena Vista Games

http://buenavistagames.com/support


The fact that they just shut them down, without any kind of formal announcement . . . well, you don't want to know what I think.
 

Two New Derez Maps Released And Server Changes

By TronFAQ on Tuesday, March 28, 2006 at 2:41 AM
Mor.Evil-1 has just released two new maps, called SkyGrid Sector 01 and SkyGrid Sector 02. You can download them both in a map pack, HERE.

Screenshot of SkyGrid 01

The Sector 01 map is meant as a chat grid where players can kick back, relax, and drink in the atmosphere: with only the Disc Primitive as a weapon. Any combat on this map, will genuinely test the skill of players who engage in battle.

The Sector 02 map? I'll leave that as a surprise. If you can think of Sector 01 as being peaceful and a version of "heaven", then I wonder what Sector 02 would be like?

I'd just like to add that I think Mor.Evil-1 has done an exceptionally good job, on these two new maps. Well done, Mor!


Due to the release of these two maps, I've taken the opportunity to make further changes to my servers.

For the LC server, the ping limit has been increased to 400. No other changes.

On the DA server, the order of the retail maps in the rotation has been re-shuffled.

Finally, on the DM server the map I/O Error has been removed, while the two new SkyGrid maps were added.


DA Server

Map rotation

DISCARENA05
DISCARENA02
DISCARENA01
DISCARENA03
DISCARENA04
Ring -
DSO Map Pack
Disc -
DSO Map Pack
Rhomboid -
DSO Map Pack
Rebound - DSO Map Pack
Tetra -
DSO Map Pack
Coliseum -
DSO Map Pack
Tube Fragmented -
DA Map Pack 1


DM Server

Map rotation

DM-02
DM-01
DM-03
TankGrid-01A -
DM Map Pack 1
Oldskool -
DM Map Pack 1
Prankster Bit Alley -
DM Map Pack 1
DM-1.5A -
DM Map Pack 2
SkyGrid 02 -
DM Map Pack 1
Micro -
DM Map Pack 1
PartyGrid -
DM Map Pack 1
Morsmap -
DM Map Pack 2
Fragmented -
DSO Map Pack
RGB Processing Grid -
DM Map Pack 1
CTB2 - CTB TDM and CTB Update
SkyGrid 01 - DM Map Pack 1
 

BVG Would Rather Bring You A Desperate Housewives Game

By TronFAQ on Monday, March 27, 2006 at 10:40 AM
Read it and weep . . . this is what they cancelled another TRON game, in favor of?

'Desperate Housewives' inspires video game

Thanks to Bigred, for the news.


Wow, Desperate Housewives and Turok. Another "killer" line-up.
 

TRON Sequel/Remake Poll

By TronFAQ on Sunday, March 26, 2006 at 4:07 PM
Hey, this is one of those times where I'm actually talking about something other than the game! Imagine that. :)

Just for fun, I thought I'd post a poll asking what everyone thinks about the situation with a follow-up TRON film from Disney.

The fact that the development of another TRON film has dragged on this long without any significant progress, is pretty discouraging. I personally think that if Disney brought back Steven Lisberger and teamed with Pixar (which Disney now happens to own) to do the CGI, a TRON sequel (not remake) would be a smash hit. The world is ready for TRON now. Back in 1982, it was way above most people's heads. But today, computers surround us everywhere. They've invaded everyone's personal lives, and we can't escape them any longer. A film touching upon how computers affect our lives is much more relevant today, to your average movie-goer. That, and the fact that they've become used to CGI special effects: makes a new TRON film a sure bet.

But don't take my word for it. Let's see what the people out there think, by checking the poll results and the various TRON site message boards. You out there Disney? Are you paying attention to the TRON fan sites? You should be. In fact, I know you are . . . you just won't admit it.

December 6th, 2008 UPDATE: This poll is now closed. Please see this article for the results. Thank you to everyone who participated in the poll!
 

More New Derez Maps On The Way

By TronFAQ on Thursday, March 23, 2006 at 2:08 PM
There are at least two new Derez maps that will arrive soon, along with a couple of updates to existing maps.

One of the new maps is from Zook_One, who did the recently released RGB Processing Grid. His next map is apparently titled Clu Tank. Zook released a preview screenshot last night, seen below.


Mor.Evil-1 is also working on another new map (not his previously announced City map), but I think he wants to keep the details hush-hush so I'll leave you in suspense until it's actually released. :)
 

Mor Reports On TRON Comic From Wizard World Convention

By TronFAQ on Tuesday, March 21, 2006 at 8:50 AM

Fellow LDSO member and friend Mor.Evil-1, attended the Wizard World Convention in Los Angeles this past weekend (held from March 17th-19th). He dropped by the Slave Labor Graphics booth, who are the publishers of the upcoming TRON: The Ghost In The Machine comic, coming in April.

Here's what Mor has to report:

Unfortunately, Louie De Martinis, Landry Walker, and Eric Jones were not there when I attended. Who are these dudes, you ask? Only the creators of the TRON comic series, that will be debuting this April 2006!

Yes, in case you have not heard, TRON: The Ghost In The Machine will finally be released in April.

In light of the fact that the TRON dudes were absent, I was able to chat with Roman Dirge: Cover Artist of the newly released Haunted Mansion comic. Since I am a huge fan of anything Mansion related, I picked up the first two issues. And he totally signed them for me, most nice of him.

Anyway, I asked him about the TRON comic. (Also informed them that there is a strong following, still playing and creating materials as best we can, for the TRON 2.0 game. And that many of us have waited very long, for the release of the comic.)

I proceeded to tell him about the lack of BVG support for the game, when he asked me "What is BVG?" (had to laugh at that). But I told him it was Buena Vista Games, and then he got it. It did seem quite a shock to him that the game was "vaporware", since the comic was just getting released.

As we continued to chat a bit more: two other SLG employees then opened a notebook, and seemed to be taking notes regarding our conversation. At that point I thanked Dirge for the comics -- and due to the apparent stares I started to receive from the two dudes -- I then went over to look at the original script for the TRON comic, and left it at that. I mean, you really can't rave about another comic: when the dude who is the cover artist for that other comic is standing there trying to promote his own, you know?

All I can say, is Dirge confirmed that the comic will be released for sure next month. And that TRON fans will love the comic, for sure. I can add that the inking is fantastic, and the storyline doesn't look half-bad.

The story does take place after TRON 2.0, where we find Jet all messed up from his experience in the system. Apparently he can't even be around any tech stuff, and lives quietly without any. However, something wants him back in the machine again.

Before I continue, I just wanted to say that I apologize for leaving out mention of Eric Jones as co-writer of the comic, back in my Just How Well Did TRON 2.0 Do, Anyway? article. Mea culpa.

I'm of two minds, when it comes to the direction that the story in the comic will take. On the one hand, having Jet become averse to technology is an interesting angle to run with. You'd think that Flynn, Alan, and Jet would at least have some kind of baggage lurking in their subconscious minds, after their experiences inside the "electronic world". On the other hand, this idea kind-of clashes with the ending of the game. Jet didn't seem too stressed-out or disturbed by what had happened to him, in the game's ending cutscene. But I guess you could argue that his experience inside, took time to really sink-in.

I found Mor's comments about how, apparently, some of the SLG employees were not aware of the TRON 2.0 game being "vaporware" (I'd use the term "abandonware", myself) -- both amusing and surprising. You would think that all the people at a company publishing this comic -- whose story is in large part based on the TRON 2.0 game -- would be keenly aware of the sales and support data for all previous TRON merchandise, and keep themselves informed.

Of course: BVG picked the worst time ever, to shut down their Multiplayer servers. Just when TRON is back on the radar screen again, with Kingdom Hearts 2 and the TRON comic right over the horizon. Just when people might find out about and buy the game, because of the comic. But logic never does seem to apply, when you are talking about BVG.

Thanks again to Mor, for providing this scoop!
 

Boxhat Problem Fixed

By TronFAQ at 8:46 AM
As some of you may already know, the problem with posting messages at the Boxhat TRON 2.0 forum has been fixed now. Everyone will be able to post a message again, without receiving an error.
 

Problem With Boxhat Site

By TronFAQ on Wednesday, March 15, 2006 at 7:52 AM
There's currently a problem with the Boxhat TRON 2.0 forum. Every time you try to post a message, you will receive an error.

Bigred (the site owner) is aware of the problem, and is working on a fix. Please be patient, until he can solve the issue.
 

Server Changes (Again)

By TronFAQ at 7:27 AM
I've made a couple of small changes to my servers.

The LC server is now set for Fast speed, instead of Extreme speed. This is to give people on dialup a better experience, and it might also prove a bit less frustrating for newer players.

The DM server has had the VMan Black map removed. There is an issue with this map, where too many AI enemies can spawn and cause severe lag to occur. I was hoping this would never happen, but it did last night. It's been replaced with VMan's Micro DM map, for the time being. This map is found in DM Map Pack 1, so the majority of people should already have it.
 

CONFIRMED . . . Custom Maps DO Work On The Mac

By TronFAQ on Tuesday, March 14, 2006 at 12:44 AM
There are now three Mac users, reporting that they have been able to successfully use custom maps on the Mac version of TRON 2.0.

Both Askilfeasd and TRS-80 reported success in this thread on Boxhat. But now thanks to Ocelot, who explained what he did step-by-step, it's been 100% confirmed that following the second approach on a page I wrote a long time ago, will work.

This method works exactly the same way as it does on the PC version. It's possible to extract the contents of the custom map .REZ files using Game Extractor on the Mac, and put it in a folder called Custom, and then the game will see the maps. This will work for any type of map: be it Disc Arena, Derez, or Light Cycles.

And thanks to 9VoltChicken (who introduced me to Ocelot), he came up with an idea that would allow Mac users to use maps directly from a .REZ file in a way that's much simpler than the first approach on the previously mentioned page.

I'll be looking into somehow making the custom maps available in their extracted form. Or even better, give more details about using 9VoltChicken's approach. We just need a bit of time to figure out the best way to proceed with these ideas.

Check back in the near future, for further details!
 

New Derez Map and Server Changes

By TronFAQ on Wednesday, March 08, 2006 at 4:45 AM
Zook_One has just released his newly finished Derez map, called RGB Processing Grid.




You can download this new map, from HERE.


Due to the release of this map, and for other reasons: I'm making some adjustments to my servers again. The DA and DM server map rotations will change to the following.


DA Server

Map rotation

DISCARENA01
DISCARENA02
DISCARENA03
DISCARENA04
DISCARENA05
Ring -
DSO Map Pack
Disc -
DSO Map Pack
Rhomboid -
DSO Map Pack
Rebound - DSO Map Pack
Tetra -
DSO Map Pack
Coliseum -
DSO Map Pack
Tube Fragmented -
DA Map Pack 1


DM Server

Map rotation

DM-02
DM-01
DM-03
TankGrid-01A -
DM Map Pack 1
Oldskool -
DM Map Pack 1
Prankster Bit Alley -
DM Map Pack 1
DM-1.5A -
DM Map Pack 2
I/O Error -
DM Map Pack 1
Black -
DM Map Pack 1
PartyGrid -
DM Map Pack 1
Morsmap -
DM Map Pack 2
Fragmented -
DSO Map Pack
RGB Processing Grid -
DM Map Pack 1
CTB2 - CTB TDM and CTB Update


In case you're wondering, I do read the chat logs once in a while. (And I even jump in to chat or play, from time-to-time.) The comments I've read, are another part of the reason for the changes. Though I must say, it seems some players are only at their happiest when they can complain.

Oh my ping sucks, oh this map is garbage. Gimme a break, folks. The true test of a player's skill, is whether he or she can handle differing pings (within reason, of course) and unfamiliar maps. And out of fairness: I'm giving several maps a chance to be played, that don't see themselves in rotation very often. (There are people commenting that certain maps seem to be new, when in fact they have been around for a couple of years. They're just "new" to the majority of you, because no one has put some of these custom maps into rotation for a long time.)
 

BVG Servers Down . . . Now, For How Long?

By TronFAQ at 12:39 AM
The BVG (Buena Vista Games) TRON 2.0 Multiplayer servers have been down for at least 48 hours, at the time of this writing. So the question is, are they gone for good now?

I've heard stories that BVG have taken down the servers before, because they cannibalize the computer equipment when they go to trade shows, and the like. (And the 2006 Game Developers' Conference is almost upon us.) Or maybe they're doing maintenance. We'll see.

If the servers aren't back after a couple of weeks, I think that will be quite telling.
 

An Interview With TheReelTodd

By TronFAQ on Sunday, March 05, 2006 at 7:42 PM
Here is the third in a series of interviews I'm doing. Today's interview is with TheReelTodd, who you may know from the TRON-Sector site. Todd is an administrator there: who has an infectious sense of humor and is considered the "good will" ambassador of the site, that greets new members and makes them feel welcome.

Enjoy this latest interview.


FAQ: Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Where do you come from, and what are your interests/hobbies (aside from TRON)?

Todd: I was born in Western NY. I grew up in, and spent most of my life, living in the Upstate NY area. I've always been fascinated with technology, sci-fi, and the art of filmmaking -- mostly how special visual effects were created. I saw Star Wars in 1977 with my family when I was 6 years old. It blew me away with its amazing visual effects and engaging story. I remember thinking that I wanted to do that -- I wanted to make cool and fantastic visuals. The same thing happened all over, when I saw TRON in 1982. The film absolutely blew me away with its amazing and groundbreaking visual effects, and incredible 3-D computer animation. After seeing TRON, I knew my future would be in the art of 3-D computer animation. I never did get into 3-D animation beyond the most simple and basic elements of it. The tools just weren't available to me back then. These days, I work at a small company where I manage the Imaging Department. I've experimented with creative production over the years, but never really pursued it professionally.


FAQ: One of your pursuits is filmmaking. What lead you to this area of interest?

Todd: It happened when I was young, 6 to be exact. The experience of seeing Star Wars left me both amazed and creatively energized. I remember when the Star Wars toys started coming out, some time well after the film was released. The toy spaceships were my favorite. While most kids were content playing with their Star Wars ships: I clearly remember thinking how I could make my own Star Wars film now, because I had models (toys) like they used to make the film. Even as a kid, I studied special FX and found it fascinating how blue and green screen matte technology could be used to composite images together. It wasn't until many years later that I finally had the tools to experiment with this kind of imagery. I made some very basic productions when I was in high school. Nothing with any visual effects because we didn't have any visual FX tools at our high school.


I finally got my own video camera when I was about 20 years old. It was a very basic, low-end GE CG 9806 VHS camcorder (I still have it), but I used it all the time and would often partner up with a friend (who was also into film and video production). We'd plan out and produce very basic little music videos. We made a handful of them, one of which is currently available on my website (Cemetery 1993). I experimented with some very basic visual effects in the early 90's (in the form of reflection image compositry), but it wasn't until the late 90's that I finally got my hands on some tools that allowed me to play with some real visual effects. I've always been interested in film and video production, but it is the visual effects part of it that intrigued me the most.

FAQ: As people reading this interview may or may not know, you finished creating your own music video last year called On The Cutting Room Floor Of Oblivion. This wasn't the first film or video you've created, but definitely your most ambitious. Can you tell us the story behind the creation of this video, such as how it got its name?

Todd: On the Cutting Room Floor of Oblivion started out as an office gag, in February 2004. We can be a silly bunch at the office, and often used to play "get that 80's song stuck in your co-worker's head" frequently. I can't remember who, but someone got the 1986 Wang Chung song Everybody Have Fun Tonight stuck in my head and it stayed there for days. I was trying to explain the jittery video effect they used in the Wang Chung music video for the song, to one of the younger workers in the office who had never seen it. We were unable to find the video on the net, so I figured I'd quickly put together a sample of the effect myself.


I embarked on what was to be a short, 3 or 4-day production. I'd put together a silly stop-motion dance sequence for the song intro, and then just lip-synch a verse and chorus of the song to show the jitter effect. In a few days, maybe a week, I'd have a cool gag video to share with the guys at work. I shot the initial footage of the stop-motion dance sequence and lip-synching very quickly. So quickly, that I shot the entire set of stop-motion dance frames out of focus and did a poor job lip-synching. No big deal -- it was just a quickie video. As I got in to post-production, I started having some ideas. I was smart enough (thinking ahead) to shoot myself lip-synching against a green background, just in case I wanted to composite some odd imagery in the background. So I shot some odd things around the house: some of my wife's decorative statues, patterns in the carpet, the pattern on our ironing board cover, the tiles in our shower, and some other things. I just applied some quick image filters to the footage, to make them look really wacked out, and put them behind the headshot close-up of me lip-synching.


It took longer than expected to assemble the stop motion dance sequence. A few days turned in to a few weeks. Soon, there I was -- doing a very silly stop motion dance in my living room, followed by a headshot of me lip-synching the song. Behind my head were some odd things I filmed around the house -- and by now, I had applied a series of image filters to my own image to make it look much like it is seen in the final video. The short office gag video started morphing in to something much bigger. Weeks turned in to months. I found myself having various ideas that I wanted in the video, but many of the ideas were a little bit more than I could pull off with what I had to work with. The video editing application alone, gave me a hard time the whole way through the project. Though I had a lot of ideas for this video as I got further in to it, I also had some severe "creative constipation". That's what I call it. It's like writer's block, but more general. Sometimes weeks or more would go by, when I would not even touch the project. Doing battle with the video editing application I was using -- and also having trouble coming up with ideas for some parts of the video -- slowed things way down. The video editing application was the worst though. I just wanted to put things together. I had all the pieces, but the application was a pain in the ass to work with. It crashed very frequently, became very slow and unresponsive to work in with every addition I made to the video, and would flat-out just not work properly at times. I knew I was doing a lot more with the app than it was designed to do, but I didn't have access (nor could I afford) to upgrade to better tools.

Many times throughout the production of this video, I simply walked away and scrapped it. Nothing was worth this much trouble. Each time I walked away, it was only a matter of time before would find myself having trouble sleeping at night: because of video ideas that would haunt my thoughts. This is, in fact, is how I ended up with the name of the video: "On the Cutting Room Floor of Oblivion". The video came very close to ending up on the cutting room floor of oblivion. The name is also a play on one of the lyrics "on the edge of oblivion" in the song.

FAQ: Before I continue, I'd just like to state that I think the work you did on Cutting Room Floor, well . . . floored me! The fact that -- despite the simple tools you were forced to work with, and the sheer amount of time and effort required -- the video turned out so well, just boggles my mind. This was obviously a labor of love, and whenever I need inspiration all I have to do is look at that video and think: "Todd never gave up, so I shouldn't either." You are a true guerilla filmmaker, in the finest sense. Working with modest resources, to create extraordinary results.

Todd: Thank you very much! :-D Yes, it was indeed a labor of love . . . and a little bit of obsession at times. I take what you said as a big compliment and really appreciate your kind words about my work. The fact that my creative labor has become an inspiration to you makes it all the more meaningful to me. I really think that's great!


FAQ: Shortly after you completed the video, it was screened at The Little Theater in Rochester, NY. What was it like at the event that night, and what was the reaction when your video was presented? How did it feel to have your video shown on the big screen?

Todd: It was really cool to see my work on the big screen in a theatre like that. My production was not the main event or anything -- people were not coming to see my work, there were several shorts screened, but it was still cool. The audience reaction to my humorous, animated music video was only lukewarm though. There was some laughter, but not at all the places I would have expected to hear it. Oddly enough, the audience pretty much made no noise during any of the handful of productions screened that night. There was no applause, and not much display of emotion (of any kind).


Well, except for the chicken cruelty documentary. It just so happened that my production was being screened the same night a "controversial" documentary about cruelty to egg-laying chickens was screened. The documentary was really very well done on the technical and production quality end, but it seemed very shady and misleading to me in terms of content. There were a lot of activists in the audience that night, and they really ate it up. The chicken documentary was the only production to get any applause at the end; mainly from the pockets of activists in the audience, not the whole audience. Yes, the "chicken people" were the rock stars that night.

During the Q&A session following the screenings, they fielded a lot of questions: while the rest of us producers just kind of hung out in front of everyone for a while, patiently waiting for a question to be asked of us. Although it was really neat seeing my work on the big screen in front of an audience, it was shown to an audience that had little interest or appreciation in the kind of silly and light-hearted production I was presenting. Oh well. I still made some people smile and laugh. :-) Perhaps I would have gotten some applause if I had included some animated chickens in the video? :-P

FAQ: Cutting Room Floor has a wonderful retro 80's theme to it, and there are several nods to various pop culture items from that era in it. (Including some cleverly hidden easter eggs.) One of those references, is to TRON. When was the first time you heard about, or saw, TRON? What impressed you the most, about it? Did you see the movie, or play the arcade game, first? Did you own any of the Atari or Intellivision TRON games? And you own a Tomy LED Light Cycle game, correct? Which is one of the TRON items that made an appearance in the video.

Todd: I first learned of the film in a TV special called Computers are People Too, months before it was in the theatres. They showed some footage of a new and amazing technology: 3-D computer animation. Along with clips of TRON, they showed other examples of 3-D computer animation, including the Triple-I demo of a shiny 3-D man in a tuxedo and top hat, juggling. I was absolutely fascinated with the way a computer could be programmed to render these 3-D images with such depth and perspective. I had never seen anything like it before -- it was completely new.


It was probably the 3-D animation in TRON that impressed me the most. The way the Recognizers moved about, the scenery and landscape, the Solar Sailer, Sark's Carrier, the Tanks . . . and my favorite scene: the Light Cycle competition. Again, this kind of 3-D animation was completely new at the time, and it totally blew me away. I loved the perfect look of everything, and how they looked like they truly had depth to them. I loved knowing they were all generated on a computer, and only existed in cyberspace (though the term "cyberspace" itself did not yet exist). The whole film was amazing, really. From the concept of being digitized in to the computer, to the wonderful adventure that was told of Flynn's tale. It was an awesome film, period.

I first saw TRON when I was 11, in the summer of 1982. My grandparents took my little brother and me to see the film. It totally blew me away and I loved every micro-cycle of it! My grandfather fell asleep.

I saw the film first. I had the opportunity to play the arcade game a while later, at a local Chuck E. Cheese. The TRON arcade game was where most of my game tokens ended up that night!

I had an Atari VCS, so I had (and still have) Adventures of TRON, and TRON Deadly Discs. Adventures of TRON really wasn't much of a game. It was a poorly done "Donkey Kong" looking screen where you'd collect all the bits on each level, then enter the stream in the middle of the board. The TRON Deadly Discs game was more fun: taking place in an arena where three guards would rez in one at a time, trying to take you out by shooting at you. You had a disc with which to derez them -- the disc would return to you each time it hit a wall, or when you pressed the fire button again. I played that game more frequently of the two. One of them (don't remember which) came packaged with a TRON Arcade-looking joystick. That was really cool, though it was a little difficult to play games with. Its innards were very brittle and it broke (internal directional actuator) within a few months of getting it.


Yeah, Tomy's TRON handheld game. I still remember going out to the mall to buy that as a kid, not too long after seeing the film. It was the coolest handheld game I ever had, and I played it very frequently. It had an awesome Light Cycle game in it -- which is what appears in the video. I was originally going to show bits of an entire round in the game: Light Cycles, the Disc Ring game, and defeating the MCP. But it seemed like a bit much in the video (too long), so only the Light Cycles made it in.


FAQ: When did you first find out about TRON 2.0? And what did you think of the finished game, when you finally bought it?

Todd: I think it was a few months or so before it was released. There were two sources I learned of it: on a filmmaking message forum, and in a magazine a co-worker gave to me. I don't remember which was first now, but I think they were within a month or two of each other. I was not highly impressed initially, after reading a tidbit about it on the internet and the write-up in the magazine. I remember thinking it had a TRON look, but was turned off by the fact it looked like they basically changed the look things, like the guards (ICPs), etc. I was also initially disappointed thinking there would be no traditional (film) Light Cycles in the game, which I later found to be not true.

My immediate thought, after embarking on the Single Player adventure, was basically: WOW! From the opening sequence of the game, I was hooked. I clearly remember not wanting to stop playing it once I started. I played it pretty much every single moment of free time I had, that first time through. I didn't really care much for some of the story elements in the game -- and there were other things that bothered me -- but as a whole, the game ROCKED!


FAQ: Your favorite part of TRON 2.0's Multiplayer is Light Cycle racing, and you started a fun thread on TRON-Sector where yourself and other players discuss the action on the "game grid", as we like to call it. A thread that's still active, even though it was started almost two years ago! Can you describe to others, what makes Light Cycle racing fun?

Todd: For me, it goes way back. When I was a kid and saw TRON in the theatre, there was no Multiplayer Light Cycle game that I could play. I played Light Cycles in the TRON arcade game, and on my Tomy TRON handheld game. And they were fun. But it wasn't really Light Cycles the way it looked and felt in the film. With TRON 2.0's online Multiplayer Light Cycle game, I finally found myself able to rez-in and enjoy it the way I had wanted to do, for more than two decades! I really sucked at first, but loved playing it anyway and got better in time. The game is very addicting. An added element of fun that I really didn't expect: was meeting other TRON fans who were actually fellow 30-somethings out there, playing the game. I got to know many of them as "the regulars", and half the fun of the gaming experience was joking around and chatting with these cool folks I'd meet up with. Between meeting up with great personalities, and the thrill of trying to out maneuver the other light cyclists, the experience is a very exciting and enjoyable. I just wish there weren't so many bugs in the Multiplayer Light Cycle game.

FAQ: Have you tried either of the other Multiplayer game modes (Disc Arena and Derez)? And have you played any of the custom maps out there? If so, what do you think of them?

Todd: I've enjoyed all the online Multiplayer games that TRON 2.0 has to offer. The Disc Arena is a lot of fun, especially when you get some good team-action going on. The Derez/DM game is good fun too. I've had the bits blasted out of me plenty of times in there. I don't play the Disc games frequently though. My true love is the online Multiplayer Light Cycle game.

I've had the pleasure of playing on several custom Light Cycle game grids, but I never got around to installing any of the custom Disc maps/arenas. The custom Light Cycle grids I've played on have ranged from neat to amazing. I've seen several outstanding custom grids. My favorites are the TRON themed ones, though I do find the non-TRON themed ones cool as well -- if a bit odd to see Light Cycles on them. I tip my hat to the creative talents behind each of them.


FAQ: What do you think of the current state of affairs, on the TRON 2.0 scene? How do you feel about BVG's lack of support?

Todd: In a word -- sad. I can't believe they put this game out, as amazing as it is, and then just let it dry up. It is obvious so much work went into it, and by very talented people. It's a damn shame BVG just walked away from it, like dumping an unwanted puppy in an alley. Well, more like they gave up on it and locked it up in the "do not ever show the light of day again" vault. The talent pool at BVG during the making TRON 2.0 was obviously very high. Too bad such poor management was (and probably still is) in charge at BVG. Such a waste.

FAQ: Rumor has it that you have considered making a TRON fan film. I think I can speak on everyone's behalf when I say: "TheReelTodd, will you do it? Please?"

Todd: Oh, it's no rumor. :-) I generally kept quiet about it for a long time, but I've been more open about it in the last year or so. My original plan was to produce a short TRON fan film that would explore . . . well, I'd rather keep quiet on the plot. :-) That seemed a bit more than I could do, so I started focusing on getting a TRON music video put together. I wanted to be the first to produce a TRON fan film or music video. That was before I learned of the Regurgitator video that was made in the late 90's. They did a nice job, too. I used some TRON film footage to put together a quick demo sequence, for a guy who wrote a cool song called Digital Risk -- a song that immediately put TRON imagery in my head. But that project fell through as well.



Just to get something going, I set out to construct my own TRON-themed circuitry suit. I had done visual FX demos, and figured out a workable formula for generating the glow effect of the circuitry for motion video. But my search for suit components didn't go well, and I threw in the towel before I even gathered up the materials. This put my TRON project on hold indefinitely. I'll say this though -- should someone step forward and provide for me a TRON circuitry suit of the specifications and particular color scheme I need for the visual FX, I'd definitely move forward on a TRON project. So I'd love to do a TRON project, but it doesn't seem likely to surface any time soon.

END OF LINE.



I'd like to thank TheReelTodd for agreeing to do this interview, and for providing such insightful and entertaining responses.

You can find out more about him and his work, plus see his On The Cutting Room Floor Of Oblivion video, at his personal site: TheReelTodd.com.
 

Problem With Unofficial Patch Discovered?

By TronFAQ on Thursday, March 02, 2006 at 9:01 PM
Well, it's a bit late . . . but here is the "shocking" discovery I was talking about in my last news post. I'm certain I've found a problem with the Unofficial Patch.

I've been using the Unofficial Patch since it was first released: because I felt that it was far better than the Official Patch. And I still feel that way. The fact that it doubles the amount of custom map .REZ files you can use -- that alone -- makes it worth using. But there seems to be an issue, that needs to be fixed.

The problem specifically lies within the modified TRONSrv.exe executable, and mainly affects those who wish to host their own TRON 2.0 servers.

When using the TRONSrv.exe executable from the Unofficial Patch, the following problems occurred in testing:

  • When hosting within the game itself, music and sound effects are sometimes not heard for both the host and client.
  • When hosting a Dedicated Server, many sound effects are always completely missing for the clients.
  • When hosting within the game itself, certain maps will exhibit odd behavior. The main symptom is both objects and players falling through an elevated plane/brush, when spawned above it.
  • When hosting a Dedicated Server, certain maps will exhibit this same odd behavior: especially if they are the first in rotation. Symptoms include not only the objects/players falling problem, but also hidden objects immediately showing themselves -- instead of remaining hidden until the proper time.

The way to fix these problems, is to use the original TRONSrv.exe from the Official Patch instead. When using the original version, the aforementioned problems disappeared. And testing has shown that the Dedicated Server will still be able to load the extra custom map .REZ files, past the Official Patch limit.

On the downside, the Official Patch version of TRONSrv.exe still has problems. But these are less bothersome than the ones caused by the modified version of the executable, from the Unofficial Patch. The original version seems to crash on startup more often. And I have noticed that the "attachment bug" with players' weapons floating in mid-air by themselves, occurs more frequently with the original version. Also, there are still instances where even the original version will sometimes not play music or sound effects. But it's nowhere near as problematic.

I recommend that everyone stops using the TRONSrv.exe from the Unofficial Patch (not just server hosts) until the problems can be fixed, and replace it with the original executable. Which can be downloaded from HERE.

At least one of these problems has been independently verified in the past, HERE and HERE. And the verified problem, is the one relating to sound effects missing while playing on TRON 2.0 servers. At the time, no one realized the exact cause. But I think I've found it. All it takes is for one end (host or client) to be using the modified TRONSrv.exe from the Unofficial Patch, and the sound problem will occur.

So again, this means everyone should download the original TRONSrv.exe and replace the one they have, if they're using the Unofficial Patch.