Retrocycles is a simple game for players of any age. You can play alone against AI, play with friends on the same computer using split screen, host a LAN game with zero setup, or play online with people around the world.
Retrocycles supports custom game environments and gameplay objectives. This game attracts creative people who like to make interesting maps, graphics, and unique game modes.
Retrocycles is a rebrand of Armagetron, a free, open-source game released in 2000 then later forked as Armagetron Advanced. The game has active development and a dedicated community of players. The code, documentation, and supporting websites continue to use the name Armagetron. Our community recognizes that Retrocycles is Armagetron and use the names interchangeably.
We recommend downloading Retrocycles on Steam. Alternatively, you can get the unbranded version named Armagetron Advanced below. Retrocycles is Armagetron Advanced. They are the same game.
For other ways to get the game and to download development versions, servers, and source code, visit download.armagetronad.org. Linux users may find Armagetron is already in their repository.
Most of our activity is on Discord. Here is an invitiation to join us! We also use old school forums, but less often. Both are great places to connect if you need technical support but you'll probably get help in real-time on Discord.
Retrocycles has a good mix of casual and competitive players. There is always at least one tournament a month and we've recently started streaming the most popular one. This particular tournament has been running since 2006. Check it out:
Retrocycles is easy to learn, hard to master. It comes with an in-game tutorial, but there are a few things you should know for a smoother online experience.
Drive next to a cycle trail to go faster. You can use another player or your own trail. The closer you get, the faster you go. Acceleration stacks, so driving between trails makes you go even faster.
To slow down, press the brake key. Brakes are temporary but replenish over time. Monitor your brakes with the gauge in the lower right.
Turning also slows you down a small amount. Learn to control your speed with a combination of driving close to walls and turning.
When you first start the game it asks you to pick common direction keys like WASD or arrow keys. You can change these in the player menu under Input Configuration. Most players bind multiple keys for each direction. Pressing two direction keys at the same time lets you to turn faster. Some players even add a third direction key.
When changing keys, consider the following:
Retrocycles has an in-game chat function. Press the Enter key to compose a message then press Enter again to send it. Chat will appear at the top of the screen. Also, there are 25 customizable instant chats. Retrocycles has many game styles and you'll want to ask questions about how to play and how to get better. Chat is especially important in team games where good communication is essential to winning.
Lag meters are triangle or diamond shaped lines drawn around other cycles when playing online. Because it takes time for your computer and server to talk to each other, the cycle you see on the screen is not where it actually it. Lag meters show you where the cycle might be, and their size depends on how much time it takes for the server to send and receive information from players. The general rule is, stay comfortably outside your opponent's lag meter.
Rubber stops your cycle from exploding before you have time to react. Like brakes, you have a limited amount that refills over time as shown in the lower left gauge.
Technically, Rubber is a special function of Retrocycles that makes network play possible. When you press a key it takes time for the signal to reach the server. Rubber works like a buffer. When you reach a wall, the server slows the cycle down while it waits for you to turn. If you don't turn, you run out of rubber and explode. Some servers have high rubber settings that cause the cycle to momentarily stop while touching a wall. It looks motionless on the screen, but the server is actually using rubber to slowly move it forward.
Retrocycles is extremely customizeable, which results in a large variety of servers, though most generally fall into two categories: Classic and Zone-Based.
Classic servers are melee style where players fight be the last one standing. They are great for casual gamers and usually have high rubber settings, which is easier for new players. Zone-Based servers have one or more circular spaces that players fight to control. Some zone-based servers are challenging. In Sumo, players try to survive in a zone that shrinks. Another game is Fortress where teams try to keep opponents out of their zone.
You can customize nearly every aspect of Retrocycles. Some of this is easily done through the game menus, but other changes require typing commands in the game's console. To open the console, press the ` backquote key. For example, players often change the look of zones by typing ZONE_ALPHA_TOGGLE 1. A complete list of commands is on the wiki.
Sometimes players want to make permanent changes which require editing or creating files. The location of these files is in the main menu under "About". In these directories you can change maps or textures for a completely different look and feel.