Atari today is not the company behind the Atari 2600 and Atari ST of The Good Old Days. The name and the brands it owns have been passed around for years in oh so many buyouts and licensing deals. Atari today is a tiny company subsisting on marrow sucked from the corpses of its faded brands; in March it employed only ten people. However, they do still have some big (or once-big) names to sling around.
This week Atari announced new Alone in the Dark and Rollercoaster Tycoon games. And, sure, a new Haunted House too, I guess, whatever.
Alone in the Dark: Illumination is due this autumn, which seems awfully soon for a game we haven’t seen even in concept art. Though it’s revered by some, I still maintain that the adventure/survival horror series was never good. The puzzles were convoluted and the combat awful, but it wowed people with polygons. We were simple people in 1992, you must understand. Though it had pretty fire, the 2008 revival was not good either. We really don’t know anything about this new game at this point.
RollerCoaster Tycoon: World, on the other hand, isn’t due until “early 2015” but does have one of those there “teaser” trailers. I hope this turns out well as I really did enjoy running my own theme park, then building increasingly dangerous rides when my attention waned. Solid simulation of building and businessing with opportunities to murder people–that’s all I ask.
[Sidenote: I was sorry during Gamescom to see Frontier only announced their murdercoaster sim ScreamRide for Xbox. It’s about building theme park rides with the express goal of killing people.]
Then, uh, sure, a new Haunted House is due this autumn too. Atari’s last attempt to revive the Atari 2600 survival horror was rubbish. It’s probably not a good sign that we haven’t seen anything of this year’s revival when we’re only a few months, tops, from release.