Honest Review: TRON: Lightcycle/Run

Disney World Tron Ride Review
Credit: TK Bosacki/ Disney Fanatic

Walk-up: 9.5/10
Queue and Pre-Show: 9.5/10
Locker Situation: 9.5/10
Coaster Rating: 9.5/10
Overdue Score Penalty: -0.5/10
Overall Rating: 9/10

As the Cast Member scanned my Annual Pass and I walked down the exclusive pathway between the Tomorrowland Speedway and the Space Mountain gift shop, the first thought that crossed my mind as I looked up at that vast white canopy was, “it’s about time!”

After waiting more years than it took to build the entire Magic Kingdom Theme Park, and scoring a little luck one fateful morning, I finally got my chance to experience TRON: Lightcycle/Run on one of the last days of the Walt Disney World Annual Passholder Preview.

I’ll cut right to the chase: it was worth the wait. Walt Disney Imagineering has gotten even closer to finding the perfect apex of thrill and family-friendly focus while also providing one of the most unique ride experiences you can find in Central Florida.

Me at TRON: Lightcycle/Run, Magic Kingdom Park, Walt Disney World

Credit: TK Bosacki/Disney Fanatic

The Disney Theme Park ride’s entire presentation truly begins as you walk up to the sign. The bold canopy dominates the landscape of Magic Kingdom’s Tomorrowland, and the coaster train shooting across the scene–its passengers screaming at the top of their lungs–creates an enticing tease required of a ride that looks to become as iconic as Splash Mountain and the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. In fact, the terrace beneath the wide outdoor curve was filled with people posed to capture the action, not unlike those who would stand on the bridge in Frontierland watching screaming riders take the plunge into the Briar Patch.

The music from Disney’s TRON Legacy builds in volume as you join the actual ride queue to join Team Blue. The Pre-Show was short but memorable. Taking place extremely early in the queue, it is the moment when all of the “users” are digitized onto the grid. I did not get to spend a lot of time in the queue, but one truly feels like you are a program on The Grid.

TRON: Lightcycle/Run, Tomorrowland, Magic Kingdom Park

Credit: TK Bosacki/ Disney Fanatic

When you go to board your lightcycle, three lines form for each train: the first queues riders up for the seats in the middle of the train, the second is the line for the “larger” seats in the back, and the third for the front two seats. In fact, a separate line to wait for the front is built into the boarding area. I decided to wait for the front, and it was only another 10 minutes wait, and I highly recommend waiting for the front.

TRON: Lightcycle/Run is More Spacious and Longer Than Expected

TRON: Lightcycle/Run, Tomorrowland, Magic Kingdom Park

Credit: TK Boascki/ Disney Fanatic

The ride vehicles appeared to be much more spacious than previously described, with only truly extraordinarily larger people and/or those who could not mount the lightcycle normally needing to wait for the upright seats in the back. Then again, I am 5’10,” 175 lbs., and I can just tell you what I observed. Afraid of losing anything I kept in my pockets, I put everything in the lockers provided and did not realize there was a compartment on the bike specifically for holding your phone.

The launch was far more intense than I was expecting, and not unlike Slinky Dog Dash at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, it looks A LOT slower than it feels. It definitely felt like we broke 60 miles per hour, as advertised, but once we flew back inside the ride building, it felt like the coaster train slowed down significantly. So, if you are hoping that Disney just launched its overall speediest coaster yet, I wouldn’t hold your breath. But that is not a bad thing! In fact, we were moving just fast enough to keep it thrilling but slow enough to observe all of the track graphics around us.

Finally, TRON: Lightcycle/Run is NOT too short. Perhaps there could have been one more high-speed turn to extend it another 10 seconds, but it leaves nothing else for one to desire. Actually, if I am being honest, my stomach started to catch up with me as we slowed down and waited to disembark, and it made me relieved I was “shorted” that 10 seconds.

Criticisms of TRON: Lightcycle/Run

tron lightcycle virtual queue

There is still NO excuse for the amount of time it took the Imagineers to build TRON: Lightcycle/Run. They were building an exact copy of an already seasoned attraction established at Shanghai Disneyland, TRON: Lightcycle Power Run, in the state with one of–if not the shortest government-supported lockdown during the Covid-19 pandemic. Under normal construction circumstances, I would probably give TRON a 9.5/10. But I’m not going to forget how long they took. Is it worth the wait? Yes. Was the wait warranted? No. Get your act together, Imagineers.

Beyond that beef, the pre-show is very missable if you are not paying attention, and the virtual queue system does take away your ability to choose when you experience the attraction. Also, the ride seats are not exactly a cozy experience. You do risk getting a sore chest afterward, and it is not because the restraints are too tight. You really do spend most of the time just lying on your stomach, and your arms are a little shaky when you get off. But, again, it is hard to tell if it is from your physical strain or if the experience was just that thrilling. Either way, it was so worth it, and you really do feel like a lightcycle-riding action hero in the TRON universe.

TRON: Lightcycle/Run, Tomorrowland, Magic Kingdom Park

Credit: TK Bosacki/ Disney Fanatic

Related: Honest Review of Disneyland from a Disney World Regular

On April 4, 2023, TRON: Lightcycle/Run will debut as an addition to the latest generation of Disney Park rides that includes Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway, and Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. And like Cosmic Rewind, it gives me more reason to trust Walt Disney Imagineers with a complete overhaul of Disney’s original indoor roller coaster, Space Mountain.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s and may not reflect the sentiments of Disney Fanatic as a whole.

About T.K. Bosacki

Born and raised in Tampa, Florida, TK Bosacki is a professional writer, amateur adventurer, and lifelong Disney Fanatic. His Disney Park days include Space Mountain, Tower of Terror, Kilimanjaro Safaris, and Nomad Lounge. He believes in starting at the Canada pavilion (IYKYK), and the Monorail is superior to all Ferry Boats.

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