In the late 1970s and early ’80s, the toy most coveted by kids was the Atari 2600 Video Computer System. While the graphics seem rudimentary by today’s near photo-realistic 3D gaming standards, when the VCS was released for Christmas of 1977, it was revolutionary to be able to interact with your TV set in such a way.

In fact, Atari set the whole video-game craze in motion with its 1972 coin-operated arcade game Pong. Even though Nutting Associates technically produced the first arcade computer game, 1971’s Computer Space, no one paid attention to this new form of entertainment until the game’s creator, Nolan Bushnell, formed a new company of his own called Atari and released Pong. During the arcade years that followed, Atari made several coin-operated hits: Breakout, Atari Football, Asteroids, Battlezone, Missile Command, Centipede, Dig Dug, Pole Position, Marble Madness, Gauntlet, and even Star Wars.

Atari also did not introduce the first home video-gaming console, but it did make the most successful one of the era. Kids would cram around TVs in rec rooms, fighting over the black joysticks with red fire buttons, playing games like Canyon Bomber, Adventure, Kaboom!, Superman, Spike’s Peak, Barnstorming, Yars’ Revenge, and Pitfall! Atari churned out hundreds of game cartridges, including some of popular coin-operated machine titles like its own Pong and Midway’s Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man, as well as games based on movies.

At the height of its success in 1982, Atari introduced the new 5200 system. Even though the company was advertising its games during prime Saturday morning cartoon time, Atari now faced tough competition from the Commodore 64 and ColecoVision. Atari faded out of fashion by 1985, when the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) was introduced.


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Recent News: Atari Video Games

Source: Google News

Buried Atari ET video game desert dig about to happen
HITC, April 15th

Followers of videogame history will be aware that some games just don't sell as well as the publishers and developers would hope for and one of the most famous games that sunk faster than a boat made out of Swiss cheese was E.T on the Atari 2600...Read more

See the buried ET Atari 2600 cartridges get dug up in person
Polygon, April 10th

Fans of video game history may want to book flights to New Mexico. On April 26, a team of documentarians and garbage contractors will excavate the fabled landfill where E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Atari 2600 cartridges are said to have been buried three ...Read more

Microsoft Ready to Excavate Atari's Alleged E.T. Landfill on April 26th
TekRevue, April 10th

A persistent legend in the gaming community is that, in 1983, Atari buried millions of unsold copies of Atari 2600 games E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Pac-Man in a New Mexico landfill following their colossal retail and critical failures. Now, after...Read more

The Infamous Atari Landfill Dig Is Finally Happening
Kotaku, April 10th

In either case, that is the official date Microsoft just announced for when someone is finally going to break ground on the infamous New Mexico landfill that's allegedly overflowing with discarded copies of the Atari 2600 games E.T. the Extra...Read more

Snappy & Flappy: Two Atari 2600 Homebrews That Boot From The XMB
MMORPG, April 6th

Looking for some more RetroXMB homebrew packages? Check out these new Atari 2600 games with a slightly modern flair! STLCardsWS has once again packaged a couple new homebrews to demonstrate the worth of Doobz's RetroXMB. Usually you ...Read more

ET Atari 2600 Cartridge Dig in New Mexico Cleared to Begin
The Escapist, April 4th

Microsoft, Fuel Entertainment, and LightBox Entertainment will try to find Atari carts lost to time, and trash. The hunt for the buried E.T. Atari 2600 cartridges is back on, according to Alamogordo News. Back in March, we reported that the excavation...Read more

Landfill Dig For Atari 2600 Game E.T. Put On Hold
Ubergizmo, March 23rd

Landfill Dig For Atari 2600 Game E.T. Put On Hold It has more or less been unanimously agreed that “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” video game for the Atari 2600 console has been designated as the worst Atari video game – ever. That has led to the game ...Read more

Planned landfill excavation for Atari 2600 'ET' cartridges will go on
Dallas Morning News (blog), March 20th

A box of old Atari 2600 games donated to the Videogame Archive center on the Campus of the University of Texas, part of the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, Thursday, Dec, 17, 2010. (AP Photo/Austin American-Statesman, Ricardo B. Brazziell)...Read more