Sunday, July 31, 2011

Issue 11 is coming soon!

You'll be pleased to know Atari User issue 11 is being finished off and will be published shortly. We're excited and hope you are too. We're so dedicated to our jobs at Atari User Towers that we've decided to go without holidays this year and stop playing useless games on Facebook!

Most of the content for issue 11 is still under wraps but as soon as it is out you'll be able to get the latest issue from the Atari User Website and we'll be posting an announcement here on the Atari User Blog.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Atari Community Mourns The Loss Of Raster

 
Radek Sterba, a.k.a Raster, has died. Full details are still a bit sketchy but it is believed he died yesterday in an accident. Apart from being an extremely talented Atari enthusiast he was also a keen cyclist.

Radek was part of the C.P.U team that brought us the SDRIVE, and stereo hardware upgrade. Radek developed the MULTIJOY interface as well as a suite of applications for both the Atari 8-bit and PC.

He'll be sorely missed by the Atari community and our thoughts and prayers go out to his friends and family at this difficult time.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Atari 800 Unwittingly Sparks More Forum Frenzy

The Atari 800, launched 1979, considered a major leap forward in its time for home computing. As a sign that either Atari enthusiasts are just getting on in years or maybe we've all got too much spare time on our hands, one popular Atari forum has gone crazy as one individual insisted on calling the Atari 800 the "Jay Miner 800" claiming that to call the machine an Atari 800 would confuse it with the Atari800 emulator. Oh the drama.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Ace Of Aces


ACE OF ACES is to be featured in our next issue with an in-depth review of both Atari XL/XE and Atari 7800 versions. Issue 11 will be out soon!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sheddy Visits Atari User Towers

Sheddy, the author of the amazing Atari 8-bit port of Space Harrier, has visited Atari User Towers to speak about the game and the challenges of bringing it to the Atari XL/XE.

His interview will be appearing in issue 11 of Atari User Magazine.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

XM Expansion Module Developer Loses Rag as 7800 Community Plunges Into Chaos

Originally slated for a late 2010 release, Curt Vendel's (Legacy Engineering) XM Expansion module project for the Atari 7800 is nearing completion after being hit by a series of issues including problems sourcing reliable suppliers and changes to the design and development team.

Customers, for the most part, have been patient and understanding but a few have been more than skeptical about progress and have been quite vocal in voicing their opinions. It all got a bit too much for Vendel who yesterday said he'd "had enough" and called on anyone who was unhappy to just cancel their order.

Vendel also stated that this would be his last none commercial project - "... you friggin crossed the line and I'm not going to be bothered with this crap anymore.". Strong words from a developer who has generally been held in high regard within the Atari community.

Here at Atari User we have every confidence in Legacy Engineering's XM Expansion module project and it is always a great shame when any developer or programmer feels that the wider Atari community isn't deserving of their efforts anymore.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ted Dabney Interview

Ted Dabney was one of the original founders of Atari, back in 1972, and we were honored to be able to interview him for Atari User magazine. You can read all about how Atari started and the contribution Ted made to getting the ball rolling in Atari User Issue 5 which details Atari's rapid rise and the events leading up to Nolan Bushnell's decision to sell the company to Warner Communications.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Atari 5200 "Super System"

 
The Atari 5200, what should have been the replacement for the aging Atari 2600. Built using the same technology as the Atari 400/800, the 5200 was designed to keep Atari ahead in the console war.  Sadly, the Atari 5200 was killed off and replaced by the 7800. Due to problems within Atari and the subsequent offloading by Warner Communications to Jack Tramiel, the 7800 took its time to hit the stores and Atari lost out on the console market - although they continued to sell the 2600 right up until the end.
The Atari 5200 has a great games library. Its analog controllers are either loved or hated by retro gamers but sure do make for a fantastic game of Star Raiders! You can check out our review of the Atari 5200 in Issue 1 of Atari User Magazine.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Atari Sues Over Fake Flashback 2 Consoles

 
We reported on the dodgy Flashback 2 consoles in Atari User Magazine. The consoles were being sold by major online retailers and store chains across the USA. Virtually identical to the original Atari sanctioned Flashback 2, the knock-offs were hard to spot but something didn't add up. They were on sale in large numbers long after Atari had sold out and stopped distribution of the originals.
Now, Atari has filed suit in a California court against US distributor Tommo seeking $30 million in damages. Atari themselves tracked down the source of the fake consoles. With licensing deals accounting for about 20% of Atari Interactive's total revenue, the company is keen to protect its branding and revenue streams.

We'll bring you more news as we get it.

Want to see what the Atari Lynx missed out on?

 
The Atari Lynx benefited from a great games library but, sadly, many great games never made it to the Lynx for whatever reason and some are still out there, possibly completed, just waiting for someone to uncover the prototype. Check out Kieren's excellent "Lost Atari Lynx Games" series, appearing from Issue 2 in Atari User, to read all about the games that never made it and what might be out there.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Atari Flashback 3 Vanishes At Sea - All Feared Lost

 
Speculation over the new Atari Flashback 3 console shows no sign of going away after several UK online retail giants pulled both the Flashback 3 and a rumored Atari Arcade Nano (AT Games?) from sale after taking large amounts of orders.
It appears they were selling stock they just didn't have with customers being told attempts to source the Flashback 3 had failed. Fortunately, most customers would not have actually been billed until their order was fulfilled.
So, did the big slow boat from China sink?, or is there more to this story that will unfold over the coming weeks? Consider this though, why would UK retailers be offering the Flashback 3 console for £9.95 ($16 USD) when US distributors were wanting $59 ?

We know the Flashback 3 is coming from China, heck what doesn't these days, and we know it has been licensed by Atari. SD support has gone out of the window and the console should ship with 60 games built-in.

We'll keep trying to get our hands on one of these but don't hold your breath.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL ATARI USER BLOG

If you haven't heard of Atari User and you're an Atari enthusiast then we have to ask - where have you been these past ten months?

Atari User is the world's only monthly Atari magazine dedicated to all the Atari consoles and computers, from the Atari 2600 right through to the Atari Falcon.

Every issue is packed with features, news, reviews, game guides and we've delivered some great exclusive interviews from Atari greats such as Ted Dabney, Doug Neubauer and Rob Fulop. Atari User is published every month in PDF format and each issue costs just $3.95. If you take out a subscription then you can save a massive 30% off the cover price. Check out atariuser.com for details.

We are always looking for volunteers to help with submitting articles and writing new material. If you are interested in advertising then we have very low rates.

In our latest issue we showcased over a dozen new releases for the Atari 8-bit and the Atari 7800 - that goes to show that Atari enthusiasts are dedicated to their classic systems and we're here every month to keep them informed on all the latest news from the Atari scene.

If you are interested in contributing articles or programs for the magazine then please contact the editor via the contact page at atariuser.com . Please note we can't pay for submitted works but contributors get a free issue of the magazine with regular contributors getting a free subscription.

This blog is the new and official blog for Atari User magazine. Here we'll be posting news and information about the magazine, give you an idea on what we're working on, as well as showcasing the best of the best for the Atari consoles and home computers.

We hope you enjoy the blog and we hope to welcome you soon as an Atari User magazine subscriber.

ATARI LYNX EATS BOY'S LUNCH

 
The Atari Lynx was a cutting edge colour handheld that couldn't be beaten when it came to its sheer power. Sadly it couldn't compete against the much cheaper and inferior Nintendo Game Boy and had another competitor in the guise of Sega's Game Gear.

In some countries the Game Gear failed to knock the Lynx into the number three sales position and in Atari User issues 9 & 10 we've been comparing the two colour handhelds and looking at how the most popular games of the time stack up on each console.

Rob Fulop talks to Atari User

We're proud and honored to have been able to interview Atari 2600 programming legend Rob Fulop in issue 10 of Atari User magazine.

Rob wrote several best selling Atari 2600 titles including Night Driver, Demon Attack, Cosmic Ark and Fathom. As well as talking about his time at Atari and then Imagic, Rob also sheds light on what he's been up to since.

A true game writing pioneer, we're extremely grateful to Rob for taking the time out of his busy schedule to talk to us.

Space Harrier Is Here For The Atari XL/XE!


Space Harrier is here! Yes, after over ten years in the making Sheddy has finished and released his conversion of the Sega classic for the Atari 8-bit. This game really has rocked our world. It looks and sounds great and has all the pace and speed of the arcade original.

We think it is the best 8-bit port of Space Harrier ever, and you can read all about it in Issue 10 of Atari User Magazine.