ATARI FORMS ATARI INTERACTIVE TO DEVELOP
LAS VEGAS — Jan. 2, 1996 — Atari Corp.,
founder of America's video game industry, has broadened its business
with the formation of Atari Interactive, a new division dedicated to the
development and distribution of multi-platform interactive
Ted Hoff, president, Atari USA, formally
announced the company's new division this week.
"With the formation of Atari Interactive, we
are creating a new division to address the worldwide PC market," Hoff
stated, adding, "Atari Interactive will allow consumers to receive our
entertainment products on a variety of formats, from existing platforms
and consoles such as our own Jaguar system, to PC, Mac, the Internet and
Over the past 25 years, Atari's creativity
and vision have led to the development of exciting and successful games
such as "Tempest," "Missile Command" and "Crystal Castles." Now, the
company will continue its tradition of innovation, combined with its
concern for meeting consumer needs, by developing entertaining,
Atari Interactive software will feature
Atari's classic arcade-style games updated to play on a number of gaming
environments. Interactive software enthusiasts will be able to enjoy
enhanced Atari classics such as "Tempest 2000," "Missile Command 3D" and
"Return to Crystal Castles."
In addition, they can experience the robust,
rich environments of Atari Interactive's new games, like the
"Interactive Rocky Horror Show" and "Virtual War." Atari Interactive's
games will be available to preview through the Atari Web site on the
Internet (address: http://www.atari.com).
Four CD-ROM titles under the Atari
Interactive name will be available in the first quarter. These premier
entertainment software titles are:
"Tempest 2000": An American video game
classic first developed by Atari in 1981 as an arcade game. The CD title
features elaborate and enhanced 3-D graphics and animation, as well as a
CD-quality techno-rave soundtrack. "Highlander": A new action-adventure
CD-ROM title that allows players to become Quentin MacLeod, the last
immortal, known as "The Highlander." As Quentin MacLeod, players
encounter challenging and complex puzzles in their quest to defeat the
"Baldies": As rulers of a fictitious world
populated by builders, workers, soldiers and scientists (who are bald,
of course), players must determine how best to employ their resources to
safeguard their world while at the same time eliminate the enemy.
"Baldies" has network capability, which allows up to four players to
enjoy the game at once, delivering four times the fun!
"FlipOut!": Players maneuver their way
through 14 different areas of The Cheese Planet while trying to solve
increasingly difficult puzzles (levels range from Normal to Psychotic).
Whether they are in Mt. Rushmore or the Sphorkle Diner, players need to
keep an eye out for mischievous aliens who'll trip them up just for the
fun of it.
The introduction of these games is only the
beginning for Atari Interactive.
Additional titles currently under
development will be available throughout 1996.
In discussing Atari Interactive's games,
Hoff explained: "The introductory titles by Atari Interactive are
designed to appeal to long-time fans of classic arcade games who want a
different, or perhaps new medium in which to play those games, as well
as novice players eager to test-drive this entertainment form on their
"By offering game enthusiasts more access
options to superior products, we have enhanced their opportunity for
convenient, exciting and challenging entertainment."
Atari creates new
Article - (San Jose Mercury News)
Calif. (Jan 2, 1996 - 18:11 EST)
Corp., moving to diversify beyond a floundering video-game system called
Jaguar, is starting a new business to deploy games for personal
computers. In launching the business under a new division called Atari
Interactive, the video-game pioneer said it will draw heavily on its
library of 1980s-vintage video games such as Asteroids and Pac-Man.
said it will update those games with three dimensional graphics and
stereo sound to run on the latest generation of high-powered PCs. Atari
launched the U.S. video game industry in about 1980, but lost the market
to competitors such as Nintendo Co. and Sega Enterprises Ltd. "We
have a 25-year library of video game titles and we want to put some of
those games on the PC," Ted Hoff, president of Atari's North
American operations, said in an interview.
PC foray comes as Atari's advanced Jaguar player struggles against
competing players by Nintendo, Sega, Sony Corp. and 3DO Co. Hobbled by a
dearth of support from independent software developers, only about
200,000 of the Jaguars have been sold worldwide since the machine was
launched in 1993.
contrast, analysts estimate Sony sold about 500,000 of its new
PlayStation machines since their launch in the United States last
September. A recent report by Gerard Klauer Mattison & Co., a market
research firm in New York, concludes that "Jaguar's prospects for
success are quite bleak." Hoff said Atari continues to stand by
Jaguar and added the player should benefit by a recent price cut to $99
from $149, as well as an expanded number of games to about 50 from four
at the machine's launch.
the end of the first quarter, Hoff said about 16 more Jaguar games will
be out. Atari's real prospect for growth, Hoff added, is in producing
games for PCs, which now reside in more than 10 million U.S. homes.
the first four PC games being released during the current quarter, Hoff
said one is a remake of the old Atari game Tempest. The other three,
Highlander, Baldies and FlipOut!, are new titles. A total of 17 PC games
will be shipped this year, Hoff said. Atari plans PC games soon based on
other of its old games, including Missile Command and Crystal Castles.
Updated versions of Asteroids, Pac Man and Centipede will be available
AEX Note: As
part of the PR campaign for the new division, Atari Interactive promoted
the PC Version of Tempest 2000 by offering a great playable demo on the
front of various PC magazines, including Computer Shopper...
on the disk to download the demo (Zipped - 495Kb)