I’m starting to think the Atari VCS is a myth. It seems as if the newest console from the Grandaddy of gaming is never going to see its way into our homes. Originally announced in June 2017 the new Atari machine started taking pre-orders in late May of 2018. Since then it has missed deadlines and is now slated to launch next year. I won’t be holding my breath.
Atari isn’t exactly doing their best to earn goodwill for the new machine, however, the latest announcement may go some way to restoring faith. Then again, maybe not.
Atari has struck a deal with streaming service Antstream Arcade that will bring an optimized and exclusive version of the service onto the VCS that will see the entire Atari back catalog available to play as well as titles from other classic consoles.
The current, non-Atari, version of Antstream does have quite a few great games ready to play. Having a look through it I managed to spot California Games so I’m pretty much sold on the idea already. That game was a huge part of my childhood and I loved it. Ask your parents.
Reports say that 50 Atari titles will be available at launch with others added on a regular basis. The games will be playable with the VCS Classic Joystick and the modern controller. As well as the standard editions of classic games there will also be an added modern element with multiplayer, controller rumble and social challenges added to please fans.
Classic Atari games such as Adventure, Pong and Yars Revenge will all be easily and legally playable once again and that’s a great thing.
It’s all sounding pretty good. Obviously, there is a catch. You didn’t think all this retro joy would come for free, did you? Of course not. Like everything else these days, a subscription is needed. The monthly option will set you back $10 per month whereas a yearly subscription will cost $95.88.
Not a bad price point after an initial 30 day trial period, however, there are so many streaming services available these days and the Atari version of Antstream will only really appeal to diehard retro gamers. With that said, I’ll let you know what it’s like when I get it.
What are your thoughts on being able to play hundreds, if not thousands, of retro games on the Atari VCS? Are you going to buy one or would you rather just get an Antstream account to use on your tablet or PC? Or do you turn your nose up at older games, thinking that they’ve had their day?
Let us know in the comments unless it’s the latter, in which case keep your opinions to yourself and let Grandad’s like me enjoy a fleeting moment of happiness.
Steve is the resident Englishman, just don’t hold that against him. He’s been playing games for the best part of 3 decades and will continue to do so for as long as his thumbs hold up. When they no longer work, he’ll still find a way to play Resident Evil 2. Lover of most things nerdy Steve also likes sports. Go sports!