Atari Games

Atari is going to reissue their old arcade games on the Xbox and PlayStation 2 platforms. Not surprisingly, they’re going after the nostalgia market and I’m quite sure it will be plenty successful for them.

There are certain cultural touchstones that mark a generation and Atari games is one of the Xer touchstones. I recently bought an Xbox and, of course, I needed the expert advice of two of my teenage gamer nephews.

I was already aware of Electronic Arts as one of the market leaders in game titles but that was about it, so I asked my nephews what other companies made games. Among those that they rattled off was, to my surprise, Atari.

Hearing the name sent me on down memory lane as I told them about how when I was their age, my friends and I would burn rolls of quarters and hours playing a huge box called a video arcade game with monochrome screens and two-D graphics and that my favorite was a game called Asteroids. And, of course, that these games would be completely boring to them.

Yeah, the nostalgia marketing angle will work. Don’t take my word for it. Two TV commercials for SUVs feature 80s arcade video game sounds (Hummer uses Asteroids sounds and Saturn Vue uses Pacman) to target Xers. Sure, I’ll buy that for 20 bucks.