Feb 5, 2006

Atari hardware strikes back with ‘Atari Flashback’

We all know that Atari no longer actually is Atari. It is just another game publishing brand name. But what happens when the executives running such a company decide to tap into its legendary hardware fame? Atari Flashback. That'’s what.

Atari Flashback is (theoretically) a retro gamer'’s wet dream. An Atari 7800 styled console (only smaller, without a cartridge slot and with a cheaper build), that runs on a normal AC adapter, includes 20 built-in Atari 2600 and 7800 games, and costs less than a contemporary pc game (and much less than a XBOX 360 one). You even get two 7800 styled joysticks thrown in the bargain.

Among the included games, some gems of the early video gaming history are to be found: Adventure, Breakout, Canyon Bomber, Revenge, Food Fight, Haunted House, Asteroids, Centipede, Warlords. You'’ll also get the dubious pleasure of experiencing the previously unreleased Atari version of the famous Saboteur. Just don'’t expect all those games to run as smoothly as they used to on the old machines. Atari Flashback is definitely not a true 7800 and it shows. Most of the games are emulated and a lot of them have serious gameplay, music or graphic glitches (Food Fight for example is a prime offender).

So... Should you buy this small retro-gadget? Depends. Atari Flashback is great value for the average (casual some might call him) gamer. The hardcore retro fan, on the other hand, will spot the various problems and the emulation inconsistencies, and might just have to wait for the Atari Flashback 2.0.

Anyway. Just take a look at the official webpage or (even better) at my retro related articles and posts. This would be a good staring point.

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  1. Old-school Atari games dont hold my interest for very long... I do have Atari Retro Redux for Playstation though, and I got some fun out of it.

  2. Well... they can be fun, especially for the people who enjoyed such (truth be said) simple games... Not everyone's cup of tea I guess... Cheaper than any PS game I believe..

  3. Dont get me wrong, I have some fun with them (Who doesent like Pong and Breakout?). I just cant seem to play most of them for more than a few minutes at a time.

  4. Well they ARE dated games... And it's quite a matter of taste...