Anyone who knows me knows I absolutely love anything that was Classic Atari. From the Atari 2600, to classic Atari Computers always bring a smile to my face. Heck, I even own an Atari 5200, and love it just as much! When I heard that Atari was reentering the console market, I became intrigued. I wondered if it will be an all in one box, similar to Nintendo’s Mini system line, or would it be a streaming box filled with classic Atari Games? Sadly, not much information was shared with the initial announcement of what was being called The “AtariBox”. But now it seems we are getting a bigger picture of what this will actually be.
A few days ago, it was revealed that the AtariBox will now be called The Atari VCS. A throwback to their first home gaming console the Atari 2600. It seems that they are really going for the nostalgia with the new system, and I for one couldn’t be happier! Attendees at this past Game Developers Conference were able to check out the design of the box itself, along with a redesign of the classic Atari 2600 controller, and a more modern controller that shares a similar look to the original.
In the company’s press release, it was stated that the new console was ?Inspired by the iconic silhouette of the original Atari 2600 Video Computer System, the new Atari VCS has already generated considerable excitement within the gaming community. Its skillful blend of modern lines and reverential details, combined with contemporary content technology and new innovation, has evoked positive reactions from Atari fans both new and old. The Atari VCS will of course serve up lots of classic content, but it is so much more than a ?retro-box.’ It is a completely new Atari connected device designed for today?s living room.”
It seems to me that this new Atari VCS will feature many classic Atari games, as well as apps such as Netflix and Hulu but only time will tell as Atari still keeping tight lipped about what will actually be presented. There are even rumors of partnerships with developers who have made New Atari 2600 games in the recent years to have their creations be featured on the VCS. This is great news as many Atari fans may not of been able to play these new creations outside of spotty emulation. I would also like to see most, if not all, of the back catalog of 2600, 5200, 7800 and XE line of games available for purchase through the system. Containing those games as launch will make it a day one purchase for me, and many others!
The good news is that all of the company’s time and efforts will be sharply focused on the Atari VCS and bringing it to every home within this year. It seems they are very serious with getting back to what made the Atari name and they truly want to get back to their roots. ?Industrial design and graphics are essential parts of the brand?s DNA and part of what makes every Atari game an adventure for the player. Today?s Atari design, engineering, software and marketing teams all endeavor to bring similar levels of care and attention to the new VCS. Atari intends its new video computer system to change the way you interact with your TV, just as the original Atari 2600 Video Computer System first did more than 40 years ago.?
Even with this new announcement, it’s still too early to decide if this new Atari VCS will be a hit, or if it will be another OUYA debacle. Personally, I truly hope that it will surpass previous attempts at this type of console, providing more content while being affordable at the same time. That seems to be Atari’s goal here, and if they stick to their guns, we could possibly see a return to gaming greatness!