I played two versions of the upcoming TRON games that are due out this holiday season. I’ll tackle them in order below..
The Wii version will have a story mode, in addition to multiplayer minigames (though only the minigames were available for the demo). I played the lightcycle minigame and I was definitely impressed by how responsive the controls were. To tell the truth, it was pretty standard Wii driving controls, but with 1000% more TRON — which is a good thing. The multiplayer aspect supports up to 4 local players. I would have liked to see some of the story mode, but I guess we’ll have to wait to see how that turns out in the coming months.
PS3 / Xbox 360:
As expected, the next-gen version was a meatier affair. The demo dropped me about 3 hours into the single-player campaign. The first thing I did was a lightcycle race/escape wherein I had to not only avoid Recognizers and tank fire, but also opposing lightcyclers trying to stop me from escaping to complete my mission. I dodged past craters in the devastated highway, and I cut off the other riders, forcing them to run into my light trail.
At the end of the chase, I transitioned into a ground combat section. Movement on foot was smooth, and it reminded me of Prince of Persia with it’s wall-running, and vaulting to and from swing-points. There are also a few special sections of the wall that replenish your energy when you run across them.
The combat is very combo driven as you transition from ranged attacks with your disk to up close and personal melee attacks. You don’t notice it during the lightcycle and foot movement sections, but the controls begin to feel a bit soft and unfocused during the fast-paced combat. I’m not too worried about that, because there is still plenty of time to tighten the controls before the game launches.
Another interesting aspect to the game is the fact that your experience follows you from the offline modes on to the online realm. So, you can spend a few minutes here and there leveling your ranged abilities by yourself, and then log on to unleash your power on unwitting internet denizens.
TRON: Evolution is dropping everywhere (PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, PC, PSP, DS) on December 7, just about a week before the movie premieres. In fact, I’m told that the game serves as a prequel, and that the movie will reference events that happen in the game as the story progresses. It’s a nice touch, and it should provide for some nice easter eggs for the players of the game.
Additionally, there will also be TRON peripherals for the Wii, PS3, and Xbox 360 (as well as a keyboard and mouse) also dropping on launch day.