Atari Partners with IDW Games to Create Board Games Based on Arcade Classics!


Arcade Castle here with some exciting news! Earlier this month, Atari announced that they would be partnering with IDW Games (known for board games such as: Machi Koro, Tammany Hall, Rattus Cartus, and Fire and Axe to name a few) to publish at least three board game adaptations of classic Atari titles: 



This has me rather excited, because we haven't seen board game adaptations of this style/era of video gaming for about 30 years or so, since the Milton Bradly line in the 1980s. Honestly, I am a little surprised to see them as well, for a number of reasons. The question is whether or not the demand is there for these particular adaptations or, to put it another way, demand for board games based of this era's arcade titles.

I have a sneaking suspicion that the unexpected success of The Oregon Trail: Card Game may have something to do with this partnership. Nostalgia is king these days, and milking it for all its worth is a billion dollar industry these days:

(To name a few)

But I digress.....


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Where was I? Oh! Yes. Atari and IDW partnering to make, as of early 2017, three board games based off of classic arcade hits: Centipede, Asteroids, and Missile Command. Nostalgia $_$ aside, I question whether the market is still there for adaptations of games from 1979-1980. Honestly, Atari has done little with these licenses for decades other than re-releasing them on a variety of consoles throughout the years, with occasional graphical updates. Its not like they have brought them into the world of 3D gaming...


Ah....that'd be why.


I guess I should maybe rephrase and say that these games don't have the presence in popular culture that they used to. Although neither does Oregon Trail, and we all saw how many copies of that pile of dysentery...err...card game sold at Target in 2016. So, I really don't know what to think anymore.

However, who they are partnering with is a good sign. IDW Games, as I mentioned does have a decent library of games they have published and, in addition to that, they have, as of late, been responsible for a number of successful licensed products in the last two years (Including Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, X-Files, Back to the Future, The Godfather, and an upcoming Planet of the Apes title). It is as if IDW realized that Nostalgia=$. Thankfully they know how to actually make games, too. They have a lot of good designers on the team for these games which makes me hopeful that these games will be good.


The first title in the series (Centipede) is slated for a late 2017 release, with regular releases to follow.

As long as they make games based off of Jungle Hunt and Keystone Capers I'll be happy.

What is interesting to note is that I cannot find news of this on atari's website. I checked their news section, did a search on their website, and tried to search their forums (which don't exist?) with no success. However, in addition to their announcement, IDW Games will be releasing updates throughout the year, so stay tuned!


Company Websites

Game Pages at Board Game Geek



To learn more about how terrible The Oregon Trail Card Game is, check out Episode 04 of our podcast!

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