TRON: Evolution is an action game that acts a bridge between the original 1982 TRON movie and the 2010 sequel, TRON: Legacy. It is also the sequel to the graphic novel TRON: Betrayal and the Nintendo DS game. It was released nearly concurrently with the latter film. Some music created by the music group Daft Punk for the movie is included in Evolution’ssoundtrack.
The setting for Evolution is TRON: Legacy’s “Grid” system during the year 1989, just as the events presented in that film begin to take place. Kevin Flynn, a major protagonist in both movies, has recently discovered ISOs on The Grid; ISOs are Programs that have apparently created themselves, and possess unique characteristics above and beyond that noteworthy trait. While Flynn sees them as a miracle, some normal Programs on The Grid resent them, and infighting between the two groups of applications has begun to flare up. In an effort to prevent a digital race war, he organizes a ceremony where the leader of the ISOs, Radia, is named co-system administrator alongside Clu, an upgraded version of a Program that Flynn wrote to use against the MCP in the first Tron film. As a security Program named Anon, you are created to guard the ceremony and help Tron – the same Program from the first film – maintain The Grid.
The game itself is played through a classic third-person perspective, similar to the Tomb Raider series. However, Anon – the player’s character – is much more athletic than a typical character for this genre, and the player is able to travel across The Grid using Anon’s “free runner” aerobatic techniques. The player attacks hostile Programs primarily with their Light Disk, through either melee or ranged attacks. They can also use the disk to block the attacks of other Programs. Derezzing (in-universe slang for killing/deleting) a Program grants experience points, which can be used to upgrade the player’s abilities. The game also includes sequences where the player can control Light Cycles (like TRON 2.0) and Tanks (upgraded versions of the ones from the first movie). Players using the PlayStation 3 version of the game can control the Light Cycle with the PlayStation Move controller, as if it were the handlebars of the bike.
The game also includes four multiplayer modes, all of which can handle up to 10 players at a time – deathmatch (called “Disintegration” in-game), team deathmatch (“Team Disintegration”), “Domination-style” deathmatch (“Power Monger”), and “Bit Runner”. Bit Runner is a cross between Capture The Flag and Domination. In the level is a “Bit” program from the first Tron movie. Whichever player grabs the Bit scores points for their team; the longer they hold on, the more points are scored. Whichever team holds onto it the longest wins the match. However, the Bit damages whoever holds it over time, which adds a complicating factor to the match. There are four deathmatch maps included with the game, and more can be purchased through Disney Interactive. There are no co-op gameplay modes.