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TRON Evolution Removed From Steam, But Will Remain In Your Steam Library If You Already Own It

By TronFAQ on Saturday, April 27, 2019 at 1:42 AM
Some time late in the evening on April 17, 2019, Disney quietly removed TRON Evolution from Steam. It can no longer be purchased.

SteamDB entry showing the game’s removal from Steam:

TRON Evolution Steam store page link
(which no longer works and redirects you to the Steam front page):

But it’s important to note that if you already own TRON Evolution on Steam, it will remain in your game library. You still own it. You can still play it.

To prove that if you own TRON Evolution you can still download it from your Steam library and install it, I’ve added an embedded video below demonstrating this. I downloaded and installed the game on April 22, 2019, which is several days after Evolution was removed from sale on Steam.

Since Evolution was removed from Steam right before the Easter long weekend: even if someone has tried to contact Disney to find out the reason for the removal (since they didn’t make any kind of announcement), we probably won’t find out why for a while yet. If at all.

Because of the lack of an explanation from Disney, there’s been a lot of speculation as to why the game was removed.

I can think of several possibilities, myself. But I feel these are the two most likely reasons:

  • A number of people reported having issues getting TRON Evolution to work on Windows 10. And due to the number of refund and/or support requests, Disney decided support was more expensive than the profit earned from sales. Making the game not worth selling any more.

    However . . . a mistake Disney made with the Steam release of TRON Evolution, is they didn't prompt people to restart Windows after installing the game. For many people, the game won't work until the user does that. If they'd added a prompt to restart, it probably would've cut support/refunds to almost nil.

  • The other possibility, is perhaps Disney had a contract with Daft Punk to still allow use of parts of their TRON Legacy soundtrack while continuing to sell TRON Evolution. And that contract has now expired. Rather than renew the contract, Disney pulled the game from Steam. Since Disney outright owns TRON and TRON Evolution, there can’t be any other kind of licensing issue.

A third, much more remote, possibility is that Disney hired a third party (GOG? Epic Games?) to update Evolution, to remove SecuROM and Game For Windows Live. And as part of agreeing to remove the junk, that third party will get the exclusive right to sell the game for a limited period of time.

But I seriously doubt it.

Despite some people having trouble getting the Steam version of TRON Evolution to work, I assure you it can and does work on Windows 10. Here's another video, embedded below, showing Evolution actually running on the upcoming Windows 10 May 2019 update.

December 5th, 2019 UPDATE: Before anyone else contacts me about it . . . Yup, I've been aware of the Steam version of TRON Evolution not activating on a new install. I knew about it before Jim Sterling's video. (Though if you've already installed TRON Evolution before now, it should still work.)

Since I've always been quick to bash Disney Interactive in the past: I wanted to give Disney a chance to fix their shit, before talking about this. Expected too much.

Other than applying a crack to the game right now, we'll have to wait for Disney to get off their asses and remove SecuROM from the game so it doesn't need activation any more. The game is almost 10 years old now. I think we're well past the need to "protect" the game's sales.

If the DRM is removed, then maybe TRON Evolution finally could show up on GOG. Hell, Disney might even get GOG to do the work of removing the DRM for them . . .

BTW, Disney have already said they’re working on a fix (as shown in Jim Sterling's video).

January 14th, 2020 UPDATE: Thanks to a recent statement made by Rockstar Games, concerning the (temporary) delisting of Grand Theft Auto IV from Steam, we may finally know why TRON Evolution was also delisted from Steam.

Remember that Disney never released any official statement, explaining why TRON Evolution was removed from sale. Up until now, the prevailing theory has been that the removal was due to a contract for usage of Daft Punk's TRON Legacy music in the game, that was expiring.

Rockstar has revealed that Microsoft is no longer issuing keys, to activate newly purchased games, that still use Games for Windows Live (GFWL). According to PCGamingWiki, TRON Evolution uses the SSA method of assigning a unique key that permanently binds ownership of the game to your GFWL account.

If Microsoft is no longer providing new keys, then if a publisher runs out of keys that were assigned to them: they can no longer sell a game that uses GFWL. Unless they make the effort to remove GFWL from the game in question. Which Rockstar will no doubt do, for GTA IV. (It also brings into question, if Microsoft eventually intends to completely retire GFWL. But as of right now, GFWL continues to function and games that rely on it still work.)

Will Disney remove GFWL from TRON Evolution? That is, to say, will Disney hire a third-party to do it? Since the games division at Disney is a skeleton crew these days, with practically no one left to do this kind of programming work.

I personally doubt it. Thanks to this new information, my latest guess is Disney will not offer TRON Evolution for sale again on Steam — or any other new digital games storefront — any time soon. They'll just do the minimum of removing SecuROM, at this time. If anything. So that at least those, who already own TRON Evolution on Steam, will be able to re-install the game at any point, and still be able to play it.
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1 comment so far.

  1. Unknown September 22, 2020 8:30 AM
    I want to play that game from 5 years ago
    but when I see this game isn't available I felt so bad

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