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posted by martyb on Wednesday September 27 2017, @02:55PM   Printer-friendly
from the more-than-a-game-[machine] dept.

Atari will crowdfund an "Ataribox" console this fall, but it can do much more than play old Atari games:

Atari released more details about its Ataribox game console today, disclosing for the first time that the machine will run Linux on an Advanced Micro Devices processor and cost $250 to $300.

In an exclusive interview last week with GamesBeat, Ataribox creator and general manager Feargal Mac (short for Mac Conuladh) said Atari will begin a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo this fall and launch the Ataribox in the spring of 2018. The Ataribox will launch with a large back catalog of the publisher's classic games. The idea is to create a box that makes people feel nostalgic about the past, but it's also capable of running the independent games they want to play today, like Minecraft or Terraria.

The new box will have an AMD custom processor with Radeon graphics. It will run the Linux operating system, with a user interface it's customizing for TVs. Mac said that the machine will run PC games, but it will also be capable of doing streaming, running apps, browsing the web, and playing music. As far as games go, the machine will run the kind of games that a mid-range PC can do today, but it won't run Triple-A games that require high-end PC performance.

[...] "People are used to the flexibility of a PC, but most connected TV devices have closed systems and content stores," he said. "We wanted to create a killer TV product where people can game, stream and browse with as much freedom as possible, including accessing pre-owned games from other content providers."

So it's a PC that comes preloaded with Pong, Asteroids, and presumably E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. Who needs this?

Also at PCWorld, BGR, Gizmodo, and Techpowerup.

It seems whoever owns the Atari name [takyon: Atari, SA] is going to cash in with a new Linux and AMD based "console". I guess Hollywood is not the only one that can drag up old properties and wring the blood from them. Might make a decent Steambox, I suppose. Also, wouldn't be complete without crowdfunding!


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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Wednesday September 27 2017, @04:08PM (1 child)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday September 27 2017, @04:08PM (#573854) Homepage Journal

    That price range is just enough to get your hopes up, to be dashed when you put it to use. Anyone can run down to Wally World, and check out the display of laptops, and if your local WW has any desktops, check them too. Bear in mind that almost everything Walmart sells is pretty much bargain-basement with regards to performance.

    If I get all that very nostalgic for Atari games, I'll see about digging out the old console, see how many games are still hiding in the closet, and immerse myself for a few hours. Then again -

    apt-cache search atari
    aranym - Atari Running on Any Machine
    ballerburg - Classical castle combat game
    chipw - custom level editor for TileWorld / Chip's Challengeā„¢
    circuslinux - Clowns are trying to pop balloons to score points!
    circuslinux-data - data files for circuslinux
    disktype - detection of content format of a disk or disk image
    enigma - Game where you control a marble with the mouse
    enigma-data - Data files for the game enigma
    enigma-doc - Documentation for the game enigma
    firmware-linux-free - Binary firmware for various drivers in the Linux kernel
    fonts-atarismall - Very small 4 x 8 font
    ttf-atarismall - transitional dummy package
    libgme-dev - Playback library for video game music files - development files
    libgme0 - Playback library for video game music files - shared library
    gnurobbo - logic game ported from ATARI XE/XL
    gnurobbo-data - logic game ported from ATARI XE/XL - data files
    hatari - Emulator for the Atari ST, STE, TT, and Falcon computers
    madbomber - Kaboom! clone
    madbomber-data - Datafiles for madbomber
    mednafen - multi-platform emulator, including NES, GB/A, Lynx, PC Engine
    solarwolf - Collect the boxes and don't become mad
    stella - Atari 2600 Emulator for SDL & the X Window System
    stymulator - Curses based player and converter for the YM chiptune format
    tcs - character set translator
    tuxpuck - air hockey game for single players
    tworld - Chip's Challenge Game Engine Emulation
    tworld-data - Chip's Challenge Game Engine Emulation - level data files
    virtualjaguar - Cross-platform Atari Jaguar emulator
    xmms2-plugin-gme - XMMS2 - gme plug-in
    atari800 - Atari 8-bit emulator for SDL

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  • (Score: 2) by Immerman on Thursday September 28 2017, @12:24AM

    by Immerman (3985) on Thursday September 28 2017, @12:24AM (#574115)

    And where do you get legal roms for those? If you care about such things?

    Frankly a $300 laptop is... adequate for most everything most people do, except demanding 3D gaming. Ditch the monitor, battery, keyboard, touchpad, hinges, speakers, and the many compromises made for weight, compactness, and power efficiency, and I bet you you could afford to jazz up the CPU and 3D card enough to run most 5+ year old games fairly well. Throw on WINE and Steam, make sure they run well, and include links to GOG and HumbleBundle, and you could have a pretty sweet little retro-gaming PC on your hands.