While mini-consoles filled with classic games are nothing new, Nintendo’s NES Classic raised the stakes with it’s short-lived release that bet on nostalgia and won. The company made an impact at the holidays with the mini-version of their classic console, preloaded with 30 games, a controller, and HD support for $60. It did well, almost too well, and then Nintendo decided to end production. There are rumors that a mini-SNES Classic is on the way, which would be amazing, but there are also other options out there if you’re interested.
AtGames has created several Genesis and Atari consoles in the past to mixed reviews, with some of the emulation leaving gamers wanting more and the peripherals not working at all times. Essentially, if you look back at the past few years of releases from the company, you can see that AtGames has released a similar package featuring infrared wireless controllers and a system that uses component cables for video. It’s fine for some, but the NES Classic proved you can do so much more.
That’s why many outlets are excited about the prospect of an updated pair of systems that could possibly rival the Nintendo products in quality. While the emulation is up in the air until the consoles are released, the Sega and Atari Flashback consoles for 2017 are bringing some welcome changes according to Polygon.
Both consoles will feature 720 HDMI output and a pair of 2.4ghz wireless controllers, while also allowing use for your classic controllers if you still happen to own them. The differences come when you look at the game selection for each console and their capabilities. Both allow saves, pausing, and rewind for all games, but the Sega Flashback allows you to play your classic Genesis cartridges alongside an advertised 85 games from the Genesis, Master System, and Game Gear consoles. Meanwhile, the Atari Flashback will not be able to play your old cartridges, but will feature a whopping 120 games like Pitfall and Space Invaders.
No price has been announced for these consoles yet, but they will hit stores in September. The entire package looks to be an upgrade from the previous versions, including the actual look of the console itself. Is it worth your time? That remains to be seen, but there is also no shortage of third-party consoles that can play classic games from older consoles. If you find a used store, you can likely bring home the old games and a machine to play them for cheap. It won’t be HD, though, and it might not be completely official.
Obviously the best option is to build your own machine and download roms that you own — or even download the games on an official console like the Wii U or Switch. But the changes offer a promising choice this holiday if you can’t get your hands on one of the remaining NES Classics or one of the rumored SNES Classics. Best bet is to wait until some hands on reviews come out for the consoles and make a judgment then.