For a further insight into the Xbox version of Tron 2.0, we cornered Climax's Kevin Hendrickson, the game's director - who's previously worked on Medal of Honor, Command and Conquer and Star Wars Clone Wars - and lead designer Scott Compton, who earned his stripes on Fear Effect...
Were there any problems in porting the game from PC to Xbox?
SC: You have more memory constraints but it was more or less a very smooth transition. We ported it over quickly and soon realised that we actually had time to add more content to the game.
Can you tell us more about the control system and how you tweaked it for console play?
SC: A lot of it comes down to what the expectation is. If a player is going to pick up a controller, you have to look at other titles on Xbox, what people are used to playing. We wanted to really bring Tron to a level where anyone can pick it up in five minutes and know how to steer, how to use most of your weapons. The tuning happened early on as the single-player game was up and running really quickly and once that became really tight, it didn't require more than another 5-10% tweaking on it after the multiplayer was in there. Personally, I like the way it's all put together with every weapon having a different quality to it, it's more intuitive. Like hitting down on the R stick to zoom in is just a natural thing.
KH: The controls are set up so that anyone can just grab a controller and learn it but as you go deeper, it's pretty intuitive.
SC: The complications we ran into were with new modes like Override, where you can switch on the fly from the lightcycle to the regular on-foot mode and, if you think about it, you only have only a certain amount of control space. Like you can steer the lightcycle with the triggers as well as using the D-pad or analogue stick. We're duplicating some functionalities to accommodate pretty much every player that's used to playing a game a certain way.
Can you tell us more about how you came up with the various weapons?
KH: With the weapons, we essentially took the four primitives that were already in the PC game and we added on to those. With each weapon, we wanted to take them a step further, make them a little bit more dynamic and also fit into our multiplayer a little better. For instance, the Ball Storm, there's a huge explosion when you throw it but we have huge multiplayer levels so it makes sense that when you throw it there's going to be times that you want to block players off.
SC: We wanted to take the Disc weapon and do something really cool with it so I just gave it a really cool electrical effect. And when you throw it, you can use it to pick up any power-up in the environment from a distance. We were also thinking about how weapons affect our Override mode when people switch from lightcycles. Our Rod Rifles - we wanted a weapon that's super impressive looking as well as packing a big wallop. It's only going to take one or two hits and you're going to down a guy but the aiming becomes more of a challenge with that weapon.
KH: With the Rod Rifles, you can sit inside one of those energy pools and your character essentially becomes like a turret where you just sit there and pound away at people.