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For the newer updated recognizer seen in TRON: Legacy and TRON: Evolution, see Recognizer (TRON: Legacy)
Vehicle TypeAerial security transport
Crew1 Pilot
UsersFlynn, Jet Bradley
Behind the scenes

"The sound of a Recognizer hovering."

A Recognizer is a large hovering vehicle with a central cockpit supported atop two massive pylon legs. Space inside this module is enough for several occupants, including a single pilot, who stands upright at the control console, and several additional passengers or crew. They emit a unique and ominous sound when in flight, similar to the noise of a helicopter.

Recognizers are demonstrated to operate as pursuit and attack vehicles capable of overtaking Light Tanks. They are also employed in the role of capturing fugitive programs by rotating their legs in together and initiating a 'stomp' maneuver from above. This does not harm the program, but does effect some kind of unexplained capture function.


Recognizers were originally created by Kevin Flynn in 1981 for his video game Space Paranoids. However, when Ed Dillinger stole Flynn's games, the vehicles became part of the Game Grid and were used by the MCP's army to capture other programs. During his escape from the Game Grid, Flynn came across a destroyed recognizer. With his user powers, Flynn accidentally reactivated the craft, causing it to reassemble, although one of its supports fell off, causing it to have difficulty turning. Flynn commented that the controls were, "just like the old arcade grips". He was able to clumsily pilot the crippled recognizer to a heavily populated part of the system, where he crashed and destroyed it completely.

TRON 2.0

Note: The following section contains information that appears in the TRON 2.0 storyline, which has been classed as non-canon with the TRON mythology and takes place in an alternate timeline.

In TRON 2.0: Killer App (GBA), recognizers are fitted with a cannon, similar to the cannon of a tank. The position of the cannon on the recognizers body is on its shoulder. The recognizer can be flown by just 1 operator, although most carry 2, a driver and radar/radio operator. The total capacity is 1 driver, 1 radio operator, and a commander.


  • The memorable sound of the Recognizers was created by sound designer Frank Serafine by simply modifying the "Helicopter" preset on the Sequential Circuits Prophet-5 synthesizer.
  • The recognizers were designed by Lisberger Studios animator and character designer John Norton. The recognizers are one of the few designs that stayed exactly the same from when Tron was planned to be an animated cartoon film. The simple shapes that made up the recognizer made it easy for MAGI to model the vehicles.

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