Atari is making a new game console

E3 2021 takes place June 12-15 as a re-imagined, all-virtual online event. Nintendo, Xbox, Bethesda, Square Enix, Sega, Bandai Namco, Ubisoft, Capcom, and others will deliver new video game announcements, trailers, release dates, and more.

Atari is working on a gaming console, CEO Fred Chesnais said in an interview with GamesBeat at E3 2017.

Chesnais wouldn’t say much about the device, telling GamesBeat only that Atari is “back in the hardware business.” The last gaming console from Atari was the Jaguar, which debuted in 1993 and was discontinued in 1996.

Atari posted the brief video above on June 8, teasing a device called the Ataribox. The title of the video on YouTube calls it “a brand new Atari product” that is “years in the making.” Interested parties can sign up on the Ataribox website for more information.

The only detail Chesnais gave to GamesBeat was to say that the Ataribox is based on PC technology. The video itself offers glimpses of a unit that appears to have wood veneer — just like the famed Atari 2600, the company’s first console — and then a white Atari logo, glowing like a CRT television, blinks into view. It’s hard to imagine Atari making a device that would compete with the PlayStations and Xboxes of the world, but it’s not unreasonable to expect an NES Classic-like throwback.

We’ve reached out to Atari for further details, and we’ll update this article with any information we receive.


Did everyone already forget about this?

Cause that’s what Atari is aiming for, I betcha.

The only thing strange about that is the "Years in the making" claim. How many years could it possibly take to make an ATARI emulator in a box?

The games, of course. New hardware plus thirty-year-old games = ‘years in the making’ in marketing speak.

It could take years to figure out all the licensing, I suppose.

They had to grow the trees for the wood casing.

Given the state of the company currently calling themselves Atari?

Years sounds a lot sooner than I would’ve anticipated.

Maybe they aren’t emulated?

Yeah but Atari games are so ugly and unplayable nowadays that I will be surprised if this is the case; NES are still fun to play until that day;

Right. Citizen Kane is in black and white so it’s also ugly and unwatchable. Motzart has no sick beats. And Charles Dickens story’s have strange words in them. Who would ever want to experience something not new?

All good points. These classics are ripe for remakes.

Some of the 2nd gen games are worth remaking in current tech… combat, river raid, and a probably several others.

If they take the game play of some of those games and merely dress them up in current tech (unity/unreal engine), then it might be worth it. . . but i dunno that I’d be dropping $300 on a console just to play them.

I’d drop 300 just to play E.T. again.

(Btw was joking).

I wouldn’t be in the market for an NES Classic style console with Atari games, but the idea of a remade River Raid and Combat is appealing. I’d rather they be software on a system I already have, though.

Those are false equivalences tho. He didn’t say that no old stuff can ever be enjoyed over new stuff, he’s specifically calling out the quality of the games on that platform.

Atari’s "Air/Sea Battle" and "Haunted House" aint exactly Citizen Kane and Fur Elise.

Apple and orange

That wasn’t the point at all.

Playing atari games and listening to mozart do not equate.

Sure, Citizen Kane is great, but The Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat Station leaves a little bit to be desired for modern viewers. Most Atari games are the same way: too simple to be compelling.

Those artists weren’t confined to the limitations of their creative platform. A ridiculous and asinine comparison.

I’m a big retro video game collector, I have 12 consoles and am getting more all the time, and sad to say I pretty much agree with Dede1973.

I was ecstatic to find an original Atari 2600 at a garage sale for a good price, I have about 15 original cartridges, I fixed it up and made it 100% working, and I love the fact that I have my 2600, but…I never play it.

It’s hard to go back to such basic graphics and gameplay as the Atari 2600. NES was a big step up in graphics, complexity, and gameplay, lots of NES games are still very much playable today, not so much Atari 260 IMO.

I still go back and play warlords from time to time (4 player multiplayer battle pong with what I consider the best video game controller ever made (the paddle controllers)) even though it’s only blocks on a screen it’s runs absurdly fast for the console and is a blast to play since the physics are actually very well done.

I’m on the agree bandwagon.

in general, you need higher resolution games to make it satisfying. The 2600 is just to way pixely. I think the NES is the bottom resolution that modern gamers can accept.

I have to say that if you are very young, the 2600 (and NES games mostly) are awesome because you can actually understand how the math under the hood works. It’s mostly parabolic and linear math. The complexity of today’s games makes it impossible to understand the math used for physic or the logic used by bad guys.

Pac-man’s beauty is that it is entirely linear math combined with very simple logic that you can eventually figure out. That’s what I loved most about games from the retro era. You can almost solve the logic like it’s a puzzle and then become an expert based on that alone. That and a lot of hand-eye coordination to enter perfect joystick movements.

It’s hard to imagine Atari making a device that would compete with the PlayStations and Xboxes of the world, but it’s not unreasonable to expect an NES Classic-like throwback.

Emphasis mine.

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