Update (5/31): The Atari VCS is now available for pre-order and has already been funded with an entire month left to go.
If you read our coverage back in March of Atari VCS, we had a general idea about pricing and pre-order dates, but detailed information was lacking. At that time Atari said that it would provide this information in April, and today, the company did just that. Atari today announced a concrete pre-order start date, where the VCS can be ordered, initial pricing information, and a general shipping timeframe.
In today’s press release, Atari shared that it will be launching pre-orders exclusively through Indiegogo on May 30. The company will offer two models, Atari VCS Collector’s Edition and Atari VCS Onyx. The Collector’s Edition features a wooden front inspired by the original console and the Onyx is a simpler black version. Pricing for the Collector’s Edition was not announced, but it was confirmed that Onyx will be priced at $199 for a limited time.
It is likely that the $199 price tag will be reserved for a small percentage of folks that are willing to put their money down faster than the rest. This approach is quite common for crowdfunding sites (typically referred to as “early-bird” pricing) to help get the ball rolling and create some additional hype over the launch. Atari also stated that signing up for email alerts on AtariVCS.com prior to May 24, 2018 will offer special purchase incentives.
“We continue moving forward on the Atari VCS project and are excited to see this pre-sale kickoff and to share more updates with our fans as we look toward the first shipments,” notes Michael Arzt, Atari COO of Connected Devices. “We are building outstanding teams and forging alliances that will make this product great and truly worthy of the Atari VCS name. Expert hardware partners are helping make this project possible and we couldn’t be more pleased with their contributions.”
Early-bird pricing may help soften the blow of the anticipated ship date. Atari states that the product will not ship until sometime in 2019. It is unclear how many orders Atari is anticipating and if high-demand could push ship dates even further.
Atari took the opportunity today to boast once again about the specifications of the console. They tout that this device is “retro-inspired”, meaning that while it is capable of fulfilling your nostalgic needs, it is also a powerful set top box capable of playing newly-released indie games and streaming 4K content.