Atari is back. The company that can easily be credited as having shaped video gaming today as we know it, has returned with a brand new console for the 21st century, and holy crap, it’s beautiful! The design is sleek, sexy, and looks ready to rumble with elements that blend the classic look with a contemporary feel. In an email release, Atari elaborated on the process of bringing the Atari Box to life,
Our objective is to create a new product that stays true to our heritage while appealing to both old and new fans of Atari.
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.
The new console will deliver “classic gaming content and current gaming content.” One can only speculate that with those updated ports and the sleek new design, we could be seeing some updates to the classic games we love. As for “current gaming content,” the company did not elaborate if they were going to be creating new titles or simply revamping the old ones. No internal specs were provided, but with no visible disc slot and a clear Ethernet port on the back, it’s possible this console will be built strictly for downloading games from an online store. With the internet (and likely, wireless) connection, that raises more questions like: Will the Atari Box offer online co-op play and streaming capabilities? Your guess is as good as ours. But many of those classic titles supported local co-op and it would only make sense to provide some sort of method for online co-op play in order for the console to be up to modern standards.
Atari has yet to unveil the controller design for the new console and no pricing or release date has been set. The company stressed they are taking their time with this release in order to respond to feedback from fans and to deliver the kind of console people will love. We’ll keep you updated as new information becomes available. You can follow Atari all over social media and sign up on the official Atari site for email updates.