Last June Atari announced they were making a new console called the Ataribox, which would be available for preorders last December. They later delayed the preorders, and we hadn’t heard an update on the Ataribox until this week. On Monday, Atari announced the console is now called an Atari VCS (meaning “Video Computer System”) and in April they will announce when they’ll start taking preorders.
When we last heard, the console would cost between $250 and $300, and, unlike the Flashback series Atari, this one doesn’t only play the old games. It can also play some modern PC games thanks to its Linux-based OS and its AMD processor with Radeon graphics. (E.T. never fell into a ditch in such seamless detail before.) Of course, you can still play the retro games on it, in case you really want to play 1982’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. (Why would you want that? Do you hate fun?)
The Atari VCS has the same retro styling as the NES Classic and the SNES Classic, with a faux wood panel piece and a joystick similar to the Atari 2600 from the late ’70s and early ’80s. Atari will be showing the Atari VCS at the Game Developers Conference 2018 (GDC) in San Francisco this Wednesday and Thursday.