Idealistic objective

From Armagetron

With minimum fuss, trust and a healthy dab of sportsmanship, 1,000,000 players organise themselves into teams, arrange matches with one another on standardised Fortress servers, and through a process of knock-out, reaching the final where 2 teams grind it out for the grand prize of TRONIC CUP and the winning prizemoney.

The entry fee of £1 pays for:

  • the server costs, not just for that day but for providing service throughout the year...
  • programming developers who provided us with such fun and excitement: they didn't ask for money, but they deserve it...
  • game-designers: people who contributed artistically to the look and feel of the game through its history, including Tron film credits...
  • winning purse and those they competed against...

Players are primarily motivated by their enjoyment of the game, both their individual skill and teamworking.


If you would like to register your name and support the idea now, click on the following paypal button AND ATTACH YOUR ARMAGETRON NAME IN THE NOTE TO PAYPAL. Closer to the final day, registration of teams shall be in place. How moneys are to be distributed is discussed here, and alternative for how the actual event is executed on the day are provided here.

how good is this game?

We all know how good this game is.. we all play it. The scale of the game is directly proportional to how hooked you are. Some players go the lengths of nominating themselves and ask teammates to kick them out of the game because they just can't stop themselves; this translates as breadth of population that may be affected by Armagetron.
One of the reasons this game can carry a popular international competition is because of its unique combination of simplicity of design and complexity of play. You can play this game with two keys -- two keys! -- albeit with a certain crimping of style. It allows people to think ahead, create mazes to trap opponents, and failing that, players can rely on their reaction times. In the little time that Fortress has been in existence, teamplay has evolved, creating the familiar launch and the crenellated defence for example. Techniques for penetrating a defence are varied, from rapier-fast attacks, torpedoes, and saw-tooth grinding. There is width for individual 1-to-1 play, and the first stirrings of real two-player combined attacks as fictionalised in the TRON film are beginning to emerge as players team up well. And then there's the stress of being the last player left alive, defending against two attackers for example.
Because of the game's simplicity, and the range of skills available to the player, and the depth of play suggested in these early days, Armagetron Fortress has the potential for being a global virtual game standard. And while computer games improve in terms of virtual-realness, this game becomes better merely as the technical net limit of PING reduces. This game is the virtual equivalent of CHESS or GO, combining strategy, competition, and adding teamplay.
And that's not to mention the way the game developed, with open-source developers working collaboratively.
If you have your own thoughts about why this game is so good, check out the page on ruminations.

the polemic of a million players

There are several reasons why a million-player competition has been suggested, amoungst them the excitement this creates, the ideal, the target which may inspire our minds to come up with means of achieving it. If this is not enough, and if there needs to be argument with those who think it impossible, then imagine a time closer to the date in a year’s time. People are registering themselves, and organising themselves into teams, for the price of a single pound £1. Why? Because if they win, they may win £10,000 each. That’s a reasonable amount of money to win in one evening’s play, if it is conducted all in one evening. And if it is possible to play 1,000,000 players in one weekend’s play... well... what about the following weekend...? Could it be possible that teams can win thousands of pounds, become professionals... or merely win enough to put themselves through college.... or set up a start-up company with ideas they have.... or school teams win enough money to furnish a new computer suite....? All these things become possible when enough players get together.
Now, the critic may suggest that not even an incentive like this can swell the numbers so high. Ultimately, a critic has to consider their own evaluation of the game. Is the game good enough? How deep is their enjoyment?
I, for one, think the game is incredibly well designed. Which is why I am so taken with it. I think the level of skill is potentially very high, and with teamwork, the game has depths like football. And it has the hallmarks of the best designed games – its simplicity. And, it is future-proof. I personally don’t think I will ever be in a winning team... I know the limitations of my play... however I enjoy it too much and am happy to explore how good I am against the best in the world, and I am happy to dream up new strategies for my team.... The game has depth, and so I believe it has appeal across at least 1,000,000 players globally. All that needs to be worked at, is how to get these players on line and playing together.... make sure the introduction for a noob is clean, and the technicalities invisible, to ensure that players can start co-operating in teams and competing against others as soon as possible....
We have a year to organise ourselves... and I believe that there is enough intelligence and wisdom to make this dream a reality, for we are certainly not lacking in technical skills nor in skill on the grid. What we need is a little trust, my friends, and together we can pull this off.... The dream is good... the reality could be even better.... 2020

I'm not going to stumble on about Idealism

This was originally a passionate response to a challenge posed to Concord and TRONIC in general on

Smile. Do not worry.
I’m not going to stumble on about idealism.
Be in the magical eight players that win out of 64 players. Its been done before in Ladles. Now out of 128. Out of 256 players. And we need a next step after this Bowl. We need a 512. A 1024. A 32 ,768. A 1,048,576.
I’m not going to stumble on about idealism.
I’ll do that after and I’ve done it before. But simply imagine being a player in Ladle 17, and you’re playing the opening match in the TRONIC cup, you’re still in your team of eight along side a teammate from Ladle 17. And after receiving congratulations from the opponents you just beat, you politely inform them, with a hint of glee in your words, that you were in the final 4 of a previous Ladle, just by winning one match. Flabbergasted, the opponents challenge you to a rematch the next sunday. By now, being an original 8, you say we’re booked through the new year. You refer them to you’re website, where a busy challenge forum is busting.
The newest opening for a clan war is a Sunday at 1930 gmt
in 7 months time.
Because your squad of 8 players has a match against another one of the 131,071 teams in the Cup on every sunday between now and then. At the point of the Cup any fortress player is part of massive game.
I’m not going to stumble on about idealism
Now, I see two obstacles. Current players aren’t as dream-headed as you and I. They play the game. It’s fun. They can accept that, its fine for them. And yeah, I enjoy playing fortress, too. But then I think, just imagine. Imagine being in a 1,048,576 player tournament after being one of the original 64 to play in a Ladle. Its like being one of the first football players. Any current fortress player would be a large authority on their favorite subject! And perhaps matches are broadcast online. And of course people watch. These are the best players in the world, pros. And tickets are sold, revenue is raised, a league is formed, teams are bought, managers are hired, players are signed to contracts, sponsors put their logos on the grid floor, madmax retires from his day job after being signed to a 5 year $5,000,000 dollar contract.
With at $16,000 pay out to each team member of the winning team, you could feasibly alongside a paid position writing about the sport make a living of Fortress. Now thats not really the goal is it. Now one hear is playing this game to make money and in some ways money spoils the purity of the whole deal. But still…
And we all know how good this game is. You play it for one thing. You join clans and post on forums about playing it. You make artwork celebrating it. You make artwork celebrating our being in clans and our posting on forums about it. You Love it. You do.
You do.
Now, I’m saying that we expand our community boundaries to 1 million new faces. Imagine how close your ties are to your fellow teammates when there are 1 million other players out there. Imagine the comraderie and almost familial ties you will have to your teammates. How awesome is that?
Its the day of the Cup. Today. RIGHT NOW. You wake up. You eat breakfast. You go to your server. You greet your teammates. You settle in for, what you hope will be a 13 hour day of Fortress. You know by 24:00 GMT there will be a winning team. You know that team is the best. You know your team can play with them. Beat them. You know what you have to do. You have 17 rounds of Armagetron’s best competition ahead of you. You can play 63 matches, maximum. If you win, that is. I mean what makes you better than the team across the grid in yellow? You look across the grid.
They have as good a chance as winning as you.
What are you going to do about it?
You grind to start the match. Just like the time before it. Just like the 1,000,000,000 times before it.
Its different and you know it.
Oh, its different. Every turn, and you know this, is a deciding factor in which team out of 131,072 will win the Cup. You crash and die. You are now dead. Welcome to the afterlife. Your defender is still circling his tail, just like before you decided to die. And on 65,535 other servers no one even knows about your stupid death. The “wups” you uttered afterword. You know that 2 million people are watching Cup matches streaming live online. You know that maybe 20 of them are watching your match. Maybe one was watching you when you died. You know a Apple executive has offered 8 custom gaming laptops to the winning team and a add campaign to go with it. Welcome to the afterlife. Watch your team lose the round, the match. You are out of the Cup, in the first round. No one will notice you or your team. No one will pay attention. You a failure, but even still you were one out of 524,288 failures. So no one cares.
The good news?
Oh there’s plenty.
First off
There are 65,535 other teams in your team’s position.
Maybe you could go to Café and play a funwar or something?
And hey, next Sunday is the 71st Ladle.
Plus if the team you lost to makes the finals, you’ll still win some money.
But you lost. You are out. And its partly your fault. Now this seems like a sad dark impersonal world.

It’s not.
I’m not going to stumble on about idealism.

You’ve played with your 7 teammates so many matches building up to this failure. They are as close as your closest friend. You chose these 7 fellows out of 131,071 to play with. So you failed. So what. You’ll be playing in Cup 2, right? And between now and then you can improve. Only through close teamwork, a familial closeness, is success even a possibility. You know this, your teammates know this, you go on. You Love It. You Do. You Do.

Now, its about 7:00pm Eastern Standard Time, and you are playing a match of fortress in Café. A casual match 12 v 12, with some complete strangers. Now, in comes K-Yo, with his cT¤ tags like always. Like you have known him since the days of 8 team Ladles. To everyone else in the server he is just a celebrity for being a winner of Bowl 12, a 16,384 player event. They all say “Hi K-yo” and he says “Hi folks”. You, just you, because you’ve known him since the days of 8 team Ladle, receive this message in a in-game pm.

“I’ve just won the Cup with CT we won the final 4-3.”

We’ve just lost contact. Earth to Space Cadet.


“I’ve just won the Cup with CT we won the final 4-3.”

You hit s to type a new message, but the cursor just stands there blinking at you. This is the same as Steven Gerrard showing up to your house the minute after you watch him win the World Cup. The same as Lebron James knocking on your door the minute after a NBA Finals MVP. The same as Barack Obama taking you out for Lunch the day after his election.

You tk your whole Café team by being away from keyboard.


Now the story could end there. But doesn’t. It doesn’t because it hasn’t started. So how could it end before it starts.

I’m not going to stumble on about idealism. This won’t happen because of long idealistic posts like this one. It might, but probably not. You need to take action this minute if you want this to happen before you go to college, fall in love and get married. Ok bad example. Hi Destiny! Hi Manta!

You want this. Get it. How? Three suggestions. Invite your real life friends over to play. Teach them the basics in LAN or Local Game. Now teach them the Fortress. Teach it if you want the Cup. Have them sign up to post of the ArmagetronAd forums, on this site, show them TRONIC. Do show them TRONIC. Show another friend. You’re two friends each show their two friends. Their two friends tell two friends. Just that easily in 20 steps we have enough players.

Second Way is just as simple as the first. Same thing. Do it online with online friends.

Third Way. Advertise on forums. Post links to the fortress tutorial in the wiki, post links to your own community site. Post links to Maybe 1 guy clicks through each day. Fine that is a start.

You know what? The First Tronic Cup has just been played. A Big Deal.
You know what?

What happens the next Sunday?