Over twenty years after the Jaguar hit, Atari’s first step back into the hardware space finally has a release date.
Pre-sale for the Atari VCS starts on Wednesday, May 30th, on crowdfunding site IndieGoGo. Beginning with the Onyx model at $199, Atari will also be offering wood-panelled collectors editions. Future packages will also contain two controllers - an old-school joystick, and more familiar gamepad.
“We continue moving forward on the Atari VCS project and are excited to see this pre-sale kickoff and to share more updates with our fans as we look toward the first shipments,” said Atari Connected Devices COO Michael.
“We are building outstanding teams and forging alliances that will make this product great and truly worthy of the Atari VCS name. Expert hardware partners are helping make this project possible and we couldn’t be more pleased with their contributions.”
Atari has long-stressed that the VCS is “retro-inspired, but not a retro-box”. While claiming to feature more up-to-date gaming and streaming experiences, the only concrete offering is the Atari Vault - a digital back-catalogue of the studio’s classic titles.
The VCS (formerly the Ataribox) hasn’t had the smoothest path to release. Crowdfunding and pre-orders were planned to begin last December, but the campaign was pulled to allow more development time. Atari’s new device sits in an uncomfortable middle-spot between retro toy and console competitor, but the games firm reckons this hardware can succeed where the Steam Machines failed.
Unless the company can provide more details about what the system offers besides the Vault, Atari may find it hard to win back fans lost over the years.
Shipment of Atari VCS systems commences in Spring, 2019.
This isn't the only new venture that Atari is trying out; the company is getting into the cryptocurrency game, too.