Ataribox Gets New Name, Pre-Order Details Coming Next Month

The Ataribox is now the Atari VCS.

40 Comments

Atari has shared some more details about its upcoming "Ataribox" system, including a new name and logo for the device. The retro-inspired console has been rechristened the Atari VCS, and it won't be long until we hear when players will be able to pre-order one.

Atari revealed the system's new name alongside the start of this year's Game Developers Conference, where the company will show off the Atari VCS along with prototypes of its classic-style joystick and more modern controller. You can take a look at those, along with some new images of the hardware and its retro-inspired logo, in the gallery below.

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Atari says the VCS hardware was inspired by the "iconic silhouette" of the original Atari 2600. It will be powered by a custom AMD processor and feature "lots" of classic Atari games, along with "current titles from a range of studios." An Indiegogo campaign for the system was originally scheduled to begin back in December, with a full launch following sometime this spring, but that was delayed because the company felt a "key element" was still missing.

"With the Atari VCS name, we know how important it is to get everything completely right and that's why we briefly paused an imminent launch late last year," said Michael Arzt, Atari COO of Connected Devices. "It was a difficult decision with the countdown underway, but we weren't willing to go forward with even one thing out of alignment. We hope that Atari's fans appreciate our extreme attention to detail and are as excited about the Atari VCS as we are."

Atari plans to announce when pre-orders will begin for the VCS sometime in April. The company didn't share any more details about when the console will launch or how much it will cost, but it was previously estimated to retail for $250-$300.

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Avatar image for skot_free
SKOT_FREE

I wish they’d remake or reboot the Amiga! I used to love that thing! As for the Atari VCS, I never liked Atari games except Pitfall, but I definitely don’t feel nostalgic to play pac man or river raid, or any of the games Atari offered on the 2600. There’s got to be a bigger draw than what they are offering.

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vtadave

I'd be interested if:

1. Price point was under $150.

2. Output via HDMI

3. Had every Atari 2600, 5200, 7800, Lynx, and Jaguar game ever made.

4. Had every Atari arcade version ever made

5. Had the option to buy new and improved paddle controllers as well as controller for games like Track & Field

6. Had the ability to purchase new games and play online

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dragonsama

This is a horrible, horrible name for it. Atari VCS is the original name of the 2600. This will make people think it's another "Flashback" console and it will languish on store shelves

Avatar image for n9302347078
N9302347078

@dragonsama:

Uh, did you miss where the nes and snes classic systems, which are the very “flashback” consoles you mentioned, actually sold out and did the EXACT OPPOSITE of languish on store shelves lol? There’s a very evident market for “flashback” consoles. People like the classics.

Avatar image for darkwatcher_vgcl
DarkWatcher_VGCL

We were surprised when nostalgia drove people to buy Nintendo's NES Classic Edition even with Nintendo creating shortages, increased demand, and provoked price gouging.

Even with that said, the estimated retail price seems ridiculous.

Avatar image for JimInPT
JimInPT

Unless it's ridiculously expensive, I'll buy it just to get Tempest on my big plasma TV. And I already have an original Tempest arcade cabinet in the basement - that's how much I like Tempest. It was the only arcade game I kept coming back to, unloading pocketsful of quarters when they were new.

Yeah, I'm old. I also know 99% of today's run-shoot-monsters games are so boring I haven't even bothered to buy an Xbone or PS4 - my PS3 still provides hours of fun with gems like Savage Moon. Give us more brilliant abstract shooters like Tempest, tower-defense, racers like Gran Turismo and puzzles and I'm back in.

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Soundchaz3r

@JimInPT: Seems to me you are not looking close enough at this generation of consoles. There are plenty of games that follow these categories. What I think is lost in translations is that those games receive less accolades because these genres are not the ones most games are looking for. I think you would enjoy games like Stories: Paths of Destinies, Unholy Heights, Grand Kingdom, The Castle Game

Avatar image for playstationzone
PlaystationZone

If this consle don’t sale it means that no one want stream consles ever since people want consles has disc base and also finish company of for good.

Avatar image for vtadave
vtadave

@playstationzone: What?

Avatar image for solidsolo
solidsolo

can't deny that it looks pretty sick. just can't believe they'd be able to penetrate this market as it is.

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GirlUSoCrazy

What developers are they working with? That's all I want to know.

Avatar image for GameboyTroy
GameboyTroy

@girlusocrazy: I'd like to know about this too.

Avatar image for imajinn
Imajinn

Remake alien vs pred that was on the jaguar, etc and I'd be interested.

Avatar image for loganlewis
LoganLewis

As an Xbox gamer I can say you can have 29 exclusives (more than Switch for now) and 6000 game titles and people will still attack your console. So good luck Atari with the petticoats of today you will need it.

Avatar image for Lach0121
Lach0121

Its a cool looking system, but if all it will do is play old Atari games, and a handful of new games you can get elsewhere, I will pass!

Now if Atari starts making their own modern games (not just mobile crap) then I might change my mind.

Avatar image for Elranzer
Elranzer

This is just The Phantom Console: Redux (anyone remember that one?)

Avatar image for Lach0121
Lach0121

@Elranzer: Vaguely, I also remember "The ultimate gaming console." But I think that one may even be a bit older.

Avatar image for Yams1980
Yams1980

what a scam rip off. If you wanted a small little emulator thing like this. All you do is spend less than 100 dollars for a mini windows pc, install atari emulator and you have every game ever made available and on top of that you could put on every single snes, nes, sega etc game on there as well.

Avatar image for jyml8582
jyml8582

Games include:

1. Pong

2. Pong 2

3. Pong: Vengeance

4. Age of Pong

5. Pong 1

6. Pong: Resurrected

7. Ping: A prequel to Pong

8. Bong

Avatar image for benderbrain
BenderBrain

If they supply a HD version of M.U.L.E. I will never have to buy another video game, ever! :)

Avatar image for soundchaz3r
Soundchaz3r

@benderbrain: Truer words have not been spoken, I wouldn't mind if they left the original SID version of the music (C64).

Avatar image for moonco
Moonco

Now we need a real working Colecovision Chameleon to get this retro party started

Moderator
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angrycreep

That price estimation has to be completely exaggerated I can't see that going for that much. I think $150.00 to $200.00 looks more ideal for the retail price. If they really want to have any chance at competing in a small scale it has to be less than $200.00. Maybe this is what they called a premium console not just some weak machine and instead is something similar in power to an Xbox one or PS4. but even if it has power like that they still has to sell it for a low price to have any chance at anything

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freedom01

that is nice and all, but they have to show us games first to get us interested. Having some old school Atari games in it would be nice, but we want to see what kind of newer games it will have.

Moderator
Avatar image for GameboyTroy
GameboyTroy

@freedom01: I agree, they need to show the modern games for it to get people interested.

Avatar image for Brettsky128
Brettsky128

Sweet, pre orders open up soon! Maybe they'll even let us know what the thing actually can do at some point! Like, does it come with games preloaded? Is it more like an Ouya with an online store? Will it come with paddles?!

Avatar image for GameboyTroy
GameboyTroy

@Brettsky128: They need to show games for the console. They need to show what the console can do.

Avatar image for GameboyTroy
GameboyTroy

Have they shown any screenshots for any of their games for the console? Hopefully it will have some AA or A budget modern games at least.

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IamDom

What about games? I can paint a rock to put on my desk and give it a name.

Avatar image for Xristophoros
Xristophoros

"current titles from a range of studios."

still being cagey as to what this actually means... my guess: mobile ports or some mediocre games from indi developers who were commissioned to create new games in the "atari style". the price point is ludicrous as well. this thing is going to fail so hard. atari, just make a no frills atari box similar to the nes/snes classic and call it a day. that would have been a lot more successful. eh, i grew up with the nes and even i can't appreciate the older atari games, let alone the archaic graphics. this console will be super niche.

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gotrekfabian

I hope that the estimated price is vastly exaggerated because no-one in their right mind will want to play Atari games from 30 years ago for that much money.

Two words for you: Raspberry Pi

Avatar image for angrycreep
angrycreep

@gotrekfabian: That price estimation has to be inflated I can't see that costing that much. I think $150.00 to $200.00 looks more ideal for the retail price. If they really want to have any chance at competing in a small scale it has to be less than $200.00. Maybe this is what they called a premium console not just some weak machine and instead is something similar in power to an Xbox one or PS4. but even if it has power like that they still has to sell it for a low price

Avatar image for dr_vancouver
Dr_Vancouver

It's Atari's sale to lose on me. I like consoles, and will probably get this if they don't "persuade me not to". Ball is in your court boys. Also, I would love it if this was at least 0.0000001 Tflop more powerful than the X- it would market itself and shut the competition the *uck up already ;)

Avatar image for ClunkerSlim
ClunkerSlim

Oh screw you Nu-Atari. There was already an Atari VCS. This is just like the Nu-Ghostbusters film calling itself "Ghostbusters." AtariBox sounded cooler anyway. You had to steal the 2600's official name? I know most of the kids here won't remember the real Atari VCS, but we oldschool Atari players remember!

Avatar image for deactivated-5b2072723fac3

But can it be hacked to put emulators on it?.....

Avatar image for benderbrain
BenderBrain

@kstaggs3:Surely, it's Linux based!

Avatar image for austinp
AustinP

And what games is this supposed to play? Nintendo,Sony and Microsoft owns the home consoles department

Avatar image for videogameninja
videogameninja

While I know there will be many old-school ATARI fans chomping at the bit to relive a piece of video gaming nostalgia I think whats going to be most interesting is just what "newer/current" titles show up on this hardware.

Regardless, this is great news for fans of the iconic brand. Who would have thought ATARI would be back on the hardware front?

-HELL FROZE OVER NINJA APPROVED-

Avatar image for Lach0121
Lach0121

@videogameninja: Yea, as someone who grew up with an Atari, I am not interested in playing the retro games. However, I am interested to see what it does in the modern gaming scene.

Avatar image for GameboyTroy
GameboyTroy

@Lach0121: We'll have to wait and see how the system does.