Intellivision Amico, another retro console

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/05/01/intellivision-amico-another-r.html

Remembering the days when we owned an Intellivision, you’d have to really prove to me the controllers aren’t crap before I’d buy it.

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Loved the Intellivision when I was a kid. Way more versatile game play than the Atari and better everything.

The worst part was the fire buttons on the side didn’t lend well to long days of button mashing. But the key pad with overlays were some times how you fired and were great.

Treasure of Tarmin and Advanced D&D were my jam. I think my brother has our old machine now. I have dabbled in emulators on the computer, but it isn’t the same with out the controller. The disk does take some getting used to, but really did work well, I think.

This seems a bit… over engineered for retro games. I mean, I just got my PS 4 for $200 this Christmas.

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$3-8 is about the right price for all of Intellivision’s games. I don’t think that’s what they mean, though.

A neighbor had an Intellivision (we didn’t even have a TV, so my old-school console experience was very limited), and they certainly seemed superior to Ataris, with a lot more complexity to the games.

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It’s the same with the Atari console - it’s selling itself as a retro game experience while also promising brand new games. Which means, I’m sure, that like the Atari, it’s going to be a low-end PC - which rather puts a limit on how cheap it can get, while also limiting what kind of new games it would be capable of running. Basically, again like the Atari, it doesn’t quite know what it wants to be (and does neither very well), but hopes nostalgia alone will propel sales.

@quori
The eternal question with all these nostalgic retro-consoles coming out. I suspect they’ll come out, break even at best, then sink, like the Ouya, which feels like the closest comparison.

It’s supposed to come with (some of) the “classic” games pre-installed. Those $3-$8 would be “new” games, which are probably remastered versions of the old ones. I can’t imagine they’re going to get many outside developers to work on this, so I hope they already have a dev team to do it.

The problem with trying to sell even remastered versions of these old games is that generations of games, including a lot of free games, have elaborated on the old gameplay mechanics, so they’re kind of redundant.

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It seems to me, couldn’t you get by with a generic raspberry pi that would play both retro and retro looking games?

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I get the ever present answer to most "but why"s as “money”…but beyond the potential profits is still an underlying WHY.

the NES or SNES and even Genesis make sense to me. The games were good, fun and well crafted overall. I can to some extent understand an Atari 2600 as it was easily the largest cache of games on the most popular console of the day. But smaller concoles like Intellivision or Colecovision? not only were there not a lot of games, but the ones they had generally were bad. The graphics are of such low quality I have a hard time believing anyone would get enjoyment playing them.

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Yeah, but they want these to play “modern” games (and modernized versions of retro games) as well, thus the problem. It’s not a purely retro gaming console, nor a modern gaming console either.

The problem with the Atari is most of the good games were from third-party publishers, not games for which Atari owns any rights. So there’s not much there, either.

The focus seems to be on at least modernizing the graphics (and possibly, to some degree, the gameplay). The problem even with that, as I said before, is that there are already tons of graphically/gameplay -updated versions of these “classic” games. Many of which are available for free.

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I have an Intellivision II in my retro console collection. I loved that system while growing up, but haven’t played it in awhile.

They didn’t list SNAFU, but I’m hoping it’ll be available. That was the game I played the most, and the one that convinced me that I wanted the system.

I’m betting the AD&D games won’t be available. Nor will Discs of Tron, another one that I played the hell out of. Unless they are part of the “reimagined classics” they’re talking about.

All that said, I won’t be preordering this. I agree that $150 - $180, and downloadable games for $3 - $8 is asking a bit much these days.

“We are creating a console that parents WANT to buy, not that they were asked to buy,” said Intellivision president Tommy Tallarico

Hah! So, you admit that kids will not be asking for this system? It’ll be parents with a bad case of nostalgia that WANT to buy it? Hmm. Weird marketing decision.

I enjoyed them. My kids did too, since I still had the system and some games. Heck, my youngest daughter still says that the Atari 2600 version of Pac-Man is still her favorite version of Pac-Man. He’s square. I don’t get it.

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I hate this because they were such awesome games. Discs of Tron - that was a great game too!

I know in the past Intellivision employees had the rights to the the games, but not some of the licnesed ones. I wonder if they could get the rights to the GAMES, but just rebrand it as “Dungeon Adventure” or “Death Frisbee”.

Something isn’t right. Return to the manufacturer :wink:

Right, but the PI can be robust enough to play newer games that have a retro feel, I would think. At least if you coded it with those limits in mind.

I know there are people who still make game for like the Dreamcast and the like. So people making games with hardware limits is a thing.

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We have a retro NES. And we all love it…everyone has their fave games. My biggest complaint is what most people complain about…upgrades. I wish they just sold “game sticks” where we could upload via USB a new set of ROMs. I’d pay $20-$40 for a thumb drive or similar of a set of new games to play.

Nah, she’s wonderful. I wouldn’t change her for the anything. The world may need some people who like a weirdly shaped Pac-Man.

(I had to look up images to remind me just what he looked like. While he wasn’t square, he was chunky, and his opened mouth made him look like a wrench.)

timthumb

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Intellivision and colecovision offered better graphics-- the 2600 was pretty darn primitive.

of course, if you wanted an accurate donkey kong, you’d probably use mame instead.

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I guess I’m glad to see them doing something, but do we really need console-exclusive 64-bit versions of Pong and Shark! Shark! and Centipede?

Honestly, just get this for your retro-Intellivision fix. It’s really well made and I guarantee will have pretty much every old game you remember.

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Yeah, the history on the game was that it was a huge misstep by Atari with the team having to reverse engineer how it worked, Atari pressuring them to do it quickly, and then making 12 million units, thinking all 10 million users would buy, and 2 million new customers would come in for it. It ended up with a meh game that still sold well, just not 12 million units well. It was the start of the Video Game crash, IIRC.

I remember my friends who had Ataris had the Ms Pac-man and it was a better game all around.

The Colecovision version was the best home version of the game - on purpose. They had the license and intentionally made the Atari and Intellivision versions meh, with out all the different levels, as they thought that Donkey Kong alone would be enough of a reason to buy a Colecovision.

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I almost bought that when Hastings went out of business. If only they had a full set of overlays…

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I thought that was Atari’s E.T. game. Or was its release just beyond the apex of the curve downward? Either way it was a YUGE misstep for Atari.

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Both of those came out in 1982 and both resulted in a ton of unsold units. The crash wa in 1983, techincally.

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My 11-year old (and my) favorite game on Atari 2600 is currently Bowling. You don’t need always need great graphics as long as the controls are responsive and the gameplay is there.

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