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Biographical information
Physical description
Circuitry ColorGreen
DescriptionSpider-like creatures that move in swarms
Other information
FunctionsCausing glitches
Out of universe information
TRON: Betrayal

A Gridbug is a digital creature that causes glitches. They can derez programs and cause havoc throughout an entire system. The size of a gridbug is not entirely known, but in TRON: The Ghost in the Machine (Issue 5), they were depicted as about the size of large insects. They usually appear in large numbers, as seen, for example, in the TRON arcade game. Their counterpart in the real world would probably be programming bugs that disrupt system activity. In Tron 2.0 Killer App it is shown that Grid Bugs spawn from hives.

In the movie, TRON, they have a very short appearance, as Tron, Yori and Flynn fly over a group of gridbugs in the Solar Sailer. Yori comments on them:

This isn't going to be easy. If those gridbugs get us, we've had it.

In User Error, gridbugs make an appearance as AI. They seem to have the same traits as viruses, firing corrupted blobs at the player.

Although their biggest official appearance is probably the TRON Arcade Game, they have appeared in many things.

In the TRON app for iPod Touch or iPhone there is a tank game where you have to exterminate Gridbugs in order to move on to the next level. The Gridbugs apear light brown in the game. These gridbugs come in different sizes and are called drones.

In TRON: Betrayal, Gridbugs frequently appear in swarms that disintegrate buildings. They are seen as glowing blue clouds (though one panel shows them as having a more bug-like look). They are first shown chasing Flynn and Tron, who fled on light cycles. Another swarm almost results in the derezzing of Ophelia, but Tron saves her. Clu blames the ISOs for the later swarms, saying they may attract or even create the gridbugs.


Their appearance in the original film is confusing because they're never seen or mentioned after this scene. Earlier drafts of the movie's script allude to a big scene with gridbugs, but the scene was not a part of the final script. However, this explains why they were in the TRON arcade game - when the game was in development the movie was still in development as well. The developers needed something to work from, so pulling from the script that they already had they created the Gridbug Swarm.

The fourth draft of the script has little mention of the gridbugs as well.

    456  SOLAR SAILER DECK                                            456

         We see Flynn looking back the way they came. Yori is at the controls,
         with Tron beside her, his arm around her shoulders, looking at Flynn.

                    What about our friend - Sark?

                    Probably decided not to pursue us,
                    The Sea of Simulation is tricky..
                    lot of illusions...rough navigating.
                    Programs have a way of just...
                    disappearing here.

                    Not us, I hope.

                         (shakes his head,
                          indicates disk)
                    Not with this disk. I'm going to
                    check on the beam connection, Yori.
                    You two can keep a watch out for
                    grid bugs.

They were designed by the same person who designed the recognizer, John Norton.

Other Appearances

File:Grid Bug and Hive.jpg

Tron 2.0: Killer App (GBA) features Gridbugs as enemies, and shows that they spawn from hives. Unless the hives are destroyed, a new Grid Bug will spawn for each one destroyed. As well, there is a Cheat option in the game that allows one to play as a Grid Bug in the main storyline. This game also shows that Grid Bugs can turn their head and blink.

In the rogue-like computer game, Nethack, Grid bugs are one of the many enemies, and often one of the first encountered. The in-game description of them is followed by a quote from the novelization of the film. In the tty mode of the game, where everything is ASCII, grid bugs are represented by a small purple lowercase x. In the visual version of the game, it appears that the sprite is the same sprite as the arcade game.

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