Atari, once considered the pioneers of the games console, have recently found to have plenty of egg on its face after calling out a publication and its “troll” journalist.
In an interview with The Register, Atari‘s chief operating officer Michael Arzt seemed to have no clear answers about its upcoming console, the Atari VCS, which is currently seeking funding on IndieGoGo. In response to the interview, Atari, on their own Facebook page, called out The Register and its journalist, for making things up.
In an almost Trump-like response, Atari VCS responded saying:
“We honestly can’t explain that article either. Our executives sat with that reporter for half an hour and he wrote what he wanted instead of what was discussed with him. Sadly there are even irresponsible trolls in ‘professional’ positions i guess.”
“We clearly said that we were bringing engineering design models to GDC and lots of people clearly don’t understand what that means. Hunks of plastic? Well, yeah, that’s how you finalize the designs and confirm that you can get the look and feel you want for the finished products. Sad.”
Of course, there are always two sides to the story, and not to be caught with their pants down, The Register did the only think they could, they released the entire 30 minute interview in full.
Long-story-short, Arzt really didn’t seem to have any answers as to what the upcoming console is or how it worked, or even what hardware it was going to use, which for a console that’s being funded to the tune of almost $3 million, that’s quite a scary thing indeed.
To make matters even more worrisome for the 11,000 backers of the campaign is Atari‘s crowdfunding platform of choice: IndieGoGo. With Kickstarter campaigns, a working prototype is required by its creators, with IndieGoGo on the other hand, a prototype of sorts isn’t required.
This is something that’s been echoed by recently-appointed president of Intellivision Entertainment, Tommy Tallarico, who says that Atari’s lack of information and choice of platform is a recipe for disaster.
“On Kickstarter, you had to have hardware in order to kickstart it,” Tallarico told IGN during an interview at E3. “So IndieGoGo, you can crowdfund something, a piece of hardware, never come out with it, and keep 3 million dollars.”
Though it is worth noting that Tallarico sees the Atari VCS as a competitor as he recently announced the launch of a brand new Intellivision console. So there’s that.
Adding to this, this isn’t the first time that Atari has blamed trolls for their own shortcomings. In an interview with n3rdabl3 discussing the launch of RollerCoaster Tycoon World and its critical reception, the company said:
“We also feel that we were trolled a bit, and we still are being trolled a lot and people are really taking kind of an interesting interest in making their negative comments heard loud and clear almost as in sports.”
Unfortunately Atari isn’t doing themselves any favours at the moment, but with the IndieGoGo campaign set to end in just three days and almost $3 million in the pot, I don’t see the company saying “Ah, my bad” and cancelling the campaign any time soon.
Or y’know, making things much, much clearer.