The Atari VCS Retro Console now available for preorder via Walmart and Gamestop

The long-awaited Atari VCS retro console has finally been released for preorder beginning today from GameStop, Walmart, and directly from the company. The device is still months away from shipping, however: Indiegogo backers are scheduled to get it first beginning in December. Retailers will not begin shipping out units until March 2020 and that is assuming this timing actually sticks, that is. The Indiegogo campaign by Atari raked in more than $3 million.

The Atari VCS is an oddball machine that has retro styling and even more powerful on the inside. The device comes with an AMD processor which enables it to perform 4K gaming along with HDR and 60 fps frame rate support, according to the company.

It comes in many different configurations:

  • Atari VCS 800 “All In”: $389 (includes joystick and controller)
  • Atari VCS 800: $279.99 (8GB RAM)
  • Atari VCS 400: $249.99 (4GB RAM)
  • Atari Classic Joystick: $49.99
  • Atari Modern Controller: $59.99
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To complicate things even further, the Atari VCS “All In” edition can be purchased from each reseller in a different color. If you purchase the device from Atari directly, you can choose the black walnut design which is most closely matched to the Atari 2600. (That’s the one in the lead image above.) You can purchase a “Kevlar gold” version from Walmart. And GameStop will only sell the all-black “onyx” edition.

According to Atari, the console, which costs a good bit more than similar nostalgia grabs like the NES/SNES Classic and PlayStation Classic, will come with an Atari Vault software compilation featuring more than 100 classic games. The company said, “Switching to the unique Atari Sandbox Mode unlocks an open and expandable multimedia PC for freedom and versatility you can’t get with any other home game system.” Users will also be able to boot into other operating systems using an external drive.

Atari is expected to showcase the VCS to the press this week at E3. I, personally, would recommend waiting for firsthand impressions as well as more proof that this device is actually getting out the door before preordering. For now, however, Atari is chronicling the VCS’s development on Medium.

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