I was born in 1990. By the time I was able to play video games both the Sega Genisis and Nintendo Entertainment System dominated the markets. So to think that 2021 would see the first release of an Atari home console in 25 years, even a micro-console, is mind-boggling to me. Yet here we are.
The Atari VCS finally has a release date for all consumers, and it is coming very soon. Originally announced on Kickstarter in 2017 it managed to meet its backer goal with ease. While backers have had the console since back in December of last year, it will be available to everybody on June 15th worldwide.
The Atari VCS is officially available as of June 15th.
Mark your calendar ✍️📅
— Atari (@atari) June 3, 2021
The system pays homage in both its appearance and its name to the Atari 2600. However, this is not the Atari from years past. While there will be a retro controller available, the system has a modern controller and a console designed for digital storage. If your looking to relieve your childhood the system is loaded with retro games from 2600.
Gamers might recall the Atari 2600 was instrumental in the creation of many third-party developers, this includes Activision. However, on the flip side, you might recall that the game E.T., released to the system in time for the holidays, was instrumental in the video game collapse in 1983. The game sold so poorly 14 truckloads of unsold copies were buried in a landfill in New Mexico.
The system is also designed to work as a fully functional PC. According to the official website:
A true “hybrid” device, the Atari VCS is a uniquely versatile two-in-one machine for PC hobbyists and DIY hardware enthusiasts.
While the console-like Atari Mode delivers games, entertainment, web browsing and Google’s G-Suite of productivity apps that will satisfy most users; Atari VCS’ PC Mode provides users with a completely open and customizable PC experience for the TV or desktop via almost any operating system software. Existing PC game libraries, retro emulation platforms and other capabilities are easily unlocked with the right know-how.
The system will support multiple OS options such as Windows, Ubuntu Linux, and Chrome OS. It will also offer plug and play options for most devices such as mouse and keyboard, console game controllers, and more.
The base console will sell for $299.99 while a bundle with classic joysticks will be $399.99.