Fake Sports That Should Be Real

Tron Light Cycles

Tron has been a series that captured the imagination of very different fans. The first movie introduced ’70s and ’80s kids to the weird world of computers, while its sequel showed a much more tech-savvy generation that things are still pretty groovy on the Grid. However, each movie prominently featured Light Cycles, including a game as dangerous as it is simple. Characters drive light cycles with no brakes, and the vehicles are only able to turn in 90-degree angles. As they travel, each cycle leaves a solid wall of light behind it, creating a deadly game in which characters must force their opponents into the walls they have created before being “de-rezzed,” which is Tron speak for killed.

At first blush, it may look impossible to replicate this game in real life. However, industrious fans have come up with low-tech ideas, including poles and colored foil, to create a non-lethal version of this game that’s still true to its onscreen reputation. As ideas go, it has the potential to be very awesome, combining our grisly fascination with things like NASCAR crashes into a game that tests player’s lightning-fast reflexes as well as their ability to strategize and outwit their opponent (to “think three-dimensionally,” as Mr. Spock might say). The sleek look of the game and the light cycles also have the potential to draw in a younger generation of viewers, ensuring that this once virtual sport has plenty of fans outside of the world of computers.