Atari has released a newsletter and trailer revealing the first details about their upcoming system, the Ataribox. With it, a separate note to investors disclosed that the console would likely be available through a crowdfunding campaign.
The trailer shows off the design of the system, which will be available in three different styles. The newsletter features a collection of screenshots showing off the consoles design and all the specs that gamers can expect to come standard with Atari’s little black box.
“Inspired by classic Atari design elements (such as the iconic use of wood, ribbed lines, and raised back); we are creating a smooth design, with ribs that flow seamlessly all around the body of the product, a front panel that can be either wood or glass, a front facing logo, indicator lights that glow through the material, and an array of new ports (HDMI, 4xUSB, SD). We intend to release two editions: a wood edition, and a black/red edition.”
Aside from the aesthetic details, the newsletter didn’t feature much information besides that the system will focus on classic, as well as current, gaming content. After a short explanation as to why they aren’t disclosing any more details, the Ataribox team mentions that they will be releasing details and specs periodically as they work on the company’s first console in nearly 20 years. A separate note to investors mentioned that the Ataribox would be “launched within the framework of a crowdfunding campaign”, although the newsletter and trailer didn’t mention any details of the sort.
No word on pricing, release, or hardware doesn’t give gamers much to work with when it comes to making a decision to pick up Atari’s forthcoming system. Interested parties can subscribe to one of the Ataribox team's multiple social media accounts, or subscribe to the email list via the Ataribox official website.
With so few details, it’s hard to really form an opinion about the Ataribox at this time. The name certainly isn’t the best with “Atari” being slapped in front of “box”; a similar move to what Microsoft did with its Xbox nearly 16 years ago. The aesthetics aren’t the most impressive either, with the Ataribox looking strikingly similar to a cable modem in its current state. Not to knock the design altogether, a wooden and glass-encased console would be a welcome change from the generic matte black and white boxes available now. The promise of current gaming is also intriguing; whether this means that Atari will be developing new games for the console or simply porting existing titles from other systems remains to be seen. Most intriguing of all would be the inclusion and porting of indie titles for release on the system; the indie library is nearly infinite these days and it wouldn’t take much to port a few existing gems onto the Ataribox and watch the number of Atari faithful grow.
Expect details on the Ataribox game library, crowdfunding campaign, and further design features in the coming months.