Atari’s has a tumultuous 30 years. After its integral role in the birth of video games, it was involved in the crash, was split up, sold, merged, acquired again, transformed, demolished and resurrected. It’s been interesting to watch.
And it’s transforming again, as part of a corporate comeback strategy. Atari is now an “interactive entertainment production company,” which means it’s putting its fingers in lots of pies.
“Atari’s approach to succeed in the digital age of entertainment includes online video games, online casinos, exclusive video content, and a robust licensing business including hardware and apparel,” reads the announcement made today.
The expansion of its platform focus has already been seen in the form of RollerCoaster Tycoon “4”, which launched on iOS but is also moving to Android and PC.
“Atari is more than a game publishing company; it’s an iconic brand that has established a passionate and timeless culture,” said CEO Fred Chesnais, Chief Executive Officer, Atari, Inc. “Known across multiple generations around the world, Atari will continue to embrace all audiences. What the company has accomplished over the years is no small feat, but there is more to come. We’re looking forward to delivering on our new strategy and engaging with our audience in new ways across multiple channels as the next era of Atari unfolds. We are leading a rebuilding exercise in a highly volatile industry, so at the same time we are also aware of the challenges that lay ahead.”
The new direction will see the re-release of its back catalogue on new platforms while Atari attempts to engage with “new audiences” and “new markets” including YouTube (through exclusive video content), LGBT, social casinos and other stuff that isn’t really very new at all.
While the RollerCoaster Tycoon mobile game gained nothing but ire, Atari does appear to be putting its money where its mouth is. The publisher interactive entertainment production company rescued intriguing multiplayer shooter Minimum from purgatory after TimeGate went bankrupt and handed the reins to Human Head. Neither the game nor the developers seem like a safe bet, so it’s nice to see Atari investing in something a bit different.