As one of the biggest media entities on the planet, Disney has a massive back catalog of family friendly properties that could be made into video games. Disney Infinity is a prime example of this as it packs almost every famous Disney character (from the cast of The Avengers to rum-swigging pirate Captain Jack Sparrow) into its sandbox world. Other games include Epic Mickey, Fantasia: Music Evolved, Kingdom Hearts and party game spin-off, Just Dance Disney.
But this all changed earlier last year when Disney made a shocking decision to lay off around 700 members of staff (around 26% of the workforce) at their in-house developer, Disney Interactive Studios. In a statement the company explained that they "consolidated several lines of business as part of an effort to focus the division on a streamlined suite of high quality digital products" and that "these actions were difficult but necessary given our long-term strategy focused on sustainable profitability and innovation". They also confirmed that Disney Infinity and Fantasia: Music Evolved would be unaffected but that they would be publishing far few titles now (up to 50% less) and that they'd be licensing IPs to third-party developers.
So what did it mean for those hoping that their favorite Disney properties would be turned into interactive experiences? Announcements over the past few months suggested that Disney's hottest properties, Star Wars and Guardians of the Galaxy would only get mobile games and features in Disney Infinity at best. But now, despite what Disney said a year ago, a new interview from famed musician Giorgio Moroder could gives fans hope of a new Disney Interactive title.
Speaking to Clash Music, Moroder revealed:
“I'm going to meet Skrillex next week when I'm back. I'm doing the music for a game for Disney's 'Tron'. We have about five themes, electronic stuff and let's see if he's interested in remixing or re-working one of the songs.”
Moroder's words – whilst he has perhaps revealed something he shouldn't – suggest two possibilities. Either Tron: Legacy is finally getting a sequel and this is just a tie-in, or Disney Infinity will be adding some additional Tron-themed content soon.
Both are entirely possible as Tron has been made into a video game tie-in before. To coincide with the release of the 2010 sci-fi movie Tron: Legacy, Disney released Tron: Evolution on PC, PS3, Xbox 360 and PSP and it featured various cast members and settings from Tron: Legacy as well as the original Tron film that was released in 1982. Sadly though, a series of issues with Tron: Evolution including its faceless, voiceless 'Anon' protagonist and the repetitive nature of its gameplay meant that the game mostly received average reviews. That doesn't mean that Disney isn't willing to try again with another Tron game but it does make it a significant risk; something that they might not want to do given the recent restructuring.
Some may also argue that it's a bit soon for a Tron tie-in game to be developed, as the next film has yet to be officially announced and production is only rumored. However, actor Bruce Boxleitner (who plays Tron in the films) explained to Crave Online that “they don’t tell me anything, but they want to do [a new Tron film] I would say probably the end of this year, for 2015 maybe. They don’t have any dates but I’m thinking from the scuttlebutt I’m hearing that’s it, but I don’t know anything for sure other than they do have a script they love, they’re still tweaking. So there's a small window of possibility there.
As for Tron content in Disney Infinity, the language Moroder used seemed to suggest that Tron would be getting its own video game rather than being a feature in another, but why wouldn't Disney want to feature one of its most famous franchises in its most famous video game? Tron characters have been featured in Disney Infinity before but sadly that was only in the iOS version, but many console players have been hoping that the futuristic, neon world will be featured on other platforms too.
No matter what the outcome, something big involving Tron is obviously on the way and as Giorgio Moroder has worked on films such as Scarface and has had his work featured in games like Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories and many others, whatever it is it will probably sound great.
Source: Clash Music