Legendary players, Atari is all set to launch its new hardware in more than two decades. But this time, it comes with a twist of crypto.
By introducing a way for gamers to spend cryptocurrency in the play, Atari, once an incredibly popular gaming company that has fallen from grace, weathered bankruptcy, and now facing stiff competition from the likes of Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s Playstation, which are preparing to launch their new video-game consoles, is attempting to restore its former glory.
Atari VCS, called mini-console or a gaming computer, was first teased several years ago and is expected to ship next month; it will offer access to over 100 Atari arcade games and home classics.
In its efforts to remain relevant, Atari brings crypto into the mix by letting consumers buy products using Atari Tokens that will go on sale in late October.
The tokens will be available from Oct. 29 on Bitcoin.com Exchange, which will start selling $1 million worth of Atari Tokens to retail investors at 25 cents apiece outside of the US.
Initially, these tokens can be used for in-game purchases and partner games. Eventually, the tokens will be used in the broader gaming ecosystem if the company’s effort to create standard currency for the industry becomes a success.
Atari is reportedly working on a gaming stablecoin but isn’t any close to launching, as per Chief Executive Officer Frederic Chesnais, who led Atari out of its 2013 bankruptcy.
“We have a brand, we have a following — we think we are going to get some attention in any case,” said Chesnais, who added that the iPhone is more his competition than an Xbox or PlayStation. “After that, the product has to be good.”
The crypto push is part of Chesnais’s seven-year effort to bolster Atar SA and make it more modern and relevant.
So far, over 11,500 people have preordered the new hardware via Indiegogo, a crowdfunding site, where Atari ran the campaign and took in more than $3 million.
“We’ll see how it plays up,” Chesnais said. “We don’t need to sell millions in the beginning, it’s a long-term effort.”