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AtGames 2022 Speculation Thread


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Yeah, I don't think it's a deal breaking either, It's just a bummer because there is such a nice UI, online community around it and the coinopsX builds are really nice. I think the issue for me is its hard to get behind the legends arcade products over the classic minis/flashbacks because the lag is worse on the puck. again, not a deal breaker, but noticeable and I wonder why I'm not playing "current game" on a different device. It feels like hustling backwards. I sometimes wonder if this is maybe one of the reasons they leaned into pinball so hard.

@Reaperman recently reviewed it and he mentioned the lag as well. It really feels taboo to talk about around here, I just want to see it improve is all. Maybe others who own the puck and multiple other minis can chime in and give honest feedback?

 

one game that really showed it to me was atari 2600 enduro. I played it quite a lot on the retron77. when i hooked the puck up to the same tv, with wired controllers, it was really off. it felt like you would crash into theback of a car and not hear it for a whole second. As far as quick responses for dodging cars, same thing. It was an eye opener.

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It would be easy enough to measure. Put a camera behind your hands (a tripod is best), load up something with obvious movements like Donkey Kong, and record a few minutes of gameplay with both the controls and your game screen in the viewfinder. Then play back the video, taking note of when your hands move the controller/button and count frames between that and when the character moves or jumps. 

 

I don't really feel like testing it, but I would guesstimate my atgames arcade stick has similar input/emulation lag to a Raspberry Pi with retropie. I didn't think I cared until I got an NT Mini Noir and played with much less lag. 

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I don't feel like testing it either, lol. But, as a lifelong gamer, you can feel it. Like you mentioned, once you have something better, the subpar system feels like you are playing underwater. I can tell that the retron77 beats out the Afb9/X by playing it. but its not super noticeable. its just barely better. Your brain can kind of learn to compensate and adjust your timing. But on the puck sounds effects are disconnected from the onscreen action and it just takes you out of the game once you notice it, well, at least me anyways.

I really don't think it would be hard to show. for anyone who has one, load up 2600 Enduro and wreck into the back of a car. To be fair, I play mostly Atari games (I'm old). Maybe it's an issue with the atari emulation core and other games aren't as bad. I just don't know some of those games as well. I am open minded that it could be my TV and set up. But I play all of these devices on any one of 3 TVs in the house. I can kind of feel the lag regardless. Even when systems have an identical connection to the same TV.

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On 4/8/2022 at 4:28 PM, Slikatel said:

No sd card slot, no matter what people say. side loaded files run better from the flashdrive than the sd card. The AFBX proved this over the AFB9.

I don't know about the AFBX, but I have a FB9 Gold and the games run with no issues off the SD card for me.  My biggest gripe is they need to get those damn paddles working!  That's why I gave up on them and bought a Retron 77 so I could play those paddle games.

Edited by atarifan88
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Atari 2600 games run fine on the sd card on the AFB9, but if you hack it and run other files, they do not run as well as off of a flashdrive on the afbx.

Paddles dont work on the afb9. they work on the afbx. I think the community build got paddles working with mame, even.

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On 4/8/2022 at 4:36 PM, Bill Loguidice said:

I'm sorry to tell you that the market is just not there for deluxe plug and plays like what you describe, so there are unlikely to be significant changes for the foreseeable future. As I've been trying to say for quite a while now, the market (both retailers and consumers) has shifted to home arcade products. There's no longer the same demand for the other types of devices. The market pendulum may swing back at some point, but it's just not something that looks likely at this point.

I don't know about that.

 

No market trying to sell the same product again and again...  True.

 

If the next wave added something NEW.  ie 7800 games.  A8 games etc.  I think you would have demand.

 

We are several years out from the Intellivision and Colecovision consoles. Any chance of replacement controllers?

 

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5 hours ago, 1980gamer said:

I don't know about that.

 

No market trying to sell the same product again and again...  True.

 

If the next wave added something NEW.  ie 7800 games.  A8 games etc.  I think you would have demand.

 

We are several years out from the Intellivision and Colecovision consoles. Any chance of replacement controllers?

 

There's no demand I'm aware of with the general public for Atari 7800 games, so I don't see how that would increase demand at retail outlets. It's one thing to create a product for enthusiasts, it's something else entirely for the broader market. The Evercade stuff is likely the most mainstream home for Atari 7800 content we're likely to see.

The Intellivision and ColecoVision Flashbacks were something like 8 years ago. There is no chance of replacement controllers from AtGames. The only chance would be if new systems were made, and that's extremely unlikely too, especially since that base technology is no longer used by the company and the rights to the Intellivision stuff are in different hands (with their own plans). There have been past rumblings of potentially doing something with the Coleco stuff again, but I consider that unlikely, especially since we stopped including ColecoVision content after the Legends Ultimate 1.0. 

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4 hours ago, Bill Loguidice said:

There's no demand I'm aware of with the general public for Atari 7800 games, so I don't see how that would increase demand at retail outlets. It's one thing to create a product for enthusiasts, it's something else entirely for the broader market. The Evercade stuff is likely the most mainstream home for Atari 7800 content we're likely to see.

I was thinking along the lines of multi-emuation like you have been doing...  So, still 2600 stuff, but add 7800 and 800 stuff.

Use the Euro style 7800 controllers and that would bring the 2600 people back.  As in something new.   I have a few of the 2600 models  But ran out of reason to buy the next iterations as they were basically the same as before.

 

Also updating the emulation to a later version etc. 

 

It is to bad about no replacement controllers.  Put me on the list for 10 sets for the Intellivision. ;)

 

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@1980gamer, there is an order of magnitude difference between 2600 sales (30 million) and 7800 sales (3 million). Pretty sure Bill is right here, that 7800 / 800 games support isn’t going to drive sales interest in any significant number. Plus, you can play 7800 / 800 on a hacked AFBX/AFB9/Legends system right now if you really wanted.

 

Additionally, with the 7800 we’re there any non-arcade ports that were particularly popular or interesting? I can only think of Ninja Golf. (I wonder how well the mobile rerelease of that one went. I played it for a little bit, and it was ok)

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4 minutes ago, CapitanClassic said:

@1980gamer, there is an order of magnitude difference between 2600 sales (30 million) and 7800 sales (3 million). Pretty sure Bill is right here, that 7800 / 800 games support isn’t going to drive sales interest in any significant number. Plus, you can play 7800 / 800 on a hacked AFBX/AFB9/Legends system right now if you really wanted.

 

Additionally, with the 7800 we’re there any non-arcade ports that were particularly popular or interesting? I can only think of Ninja Golf. (I wonder how well the mobile rerelease of that one went. I played it for a little bit, and it was ok)

That's always the key with these things. You need a strong handful of games with wide name recognition, but also recognizable games available to actually license for reasonable fees. A platform like the Atari 7800 doesn't really have either of those in its favor. Its biggest game names either are ones widely available elsewhere in one form or another or simply aren't available.

 

16 minutes ago, 1980gamer said:

I was thinking along the lines of multi-emuation like you have been doing...  So, still 2600 stuff, but add 7800 and 800 stuff.

Use the Euro style 7800 controllers and that would bring the 2600 people back.  As in something new.   I have a few of the 2600 models  But ran out of reason to buy the next iterations as they were basically the same as before.

 

Although something of an upgrade in some cases over the poor Atari 7800 joysticks, I don't consider the Atari 7800 gamepads particularly usable. And they're certainly not iconic in any way like the 2600 joystick, so having them as the controllers wouldn't exactly help things. At one time there was a discussion about doing a different type of controller that could accommodate 7800 games and some arcade stuff, but that was before the shift in focus to home arcade and the general market shift in focus to home arcade over traditional plug and plays. Again, I just don't see a particular appetite from any of the relevant internal and external parties to invest much in radically transforming these types of products from what we've already gotten. Although not ideal in some ways, I again point to the Evercade stuff as great ways to play 7800 and Intellivision games. They're well-positioned to cater to that particular market. I'm sure they could also add ColecoVision stuff easily enough as well.

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4 minutes ago, CapitanClassic said:

@1980gamer, there is an order of magnitude difference between 2600 sales (30 million) and 7800 sales (3 million). Pretty sure Bill is right here, that 7800 / 800 games support isn’t going to drive sales interest in any significant number. Plus, you can play 7800 / 800 on a hacked AFBX/AFB9/Legends system right now if you really wanted.

 

Additionally, with the 7800 we’re there any non-arcade ports that were particularly popular or interesting? I can only think of Ninja Golf. (I wonder how well the mobile rerelease of that one went. I played it for a little bit, and it was ok)

I am going after the 30 million.   I am adding incentive to buy yet another flashback.

The controller would be a huge incentive.  Make it compatible with a real 7800 of course. 

 

I agree you and I can take advantage of hacked systems, but the AtG@mes audience is much larger than AA.

 

One on One is a game I played a bunch of BITD.  That is Electronic Arts, don't know if they could get that?  But how about adding the home brews?   For 2600 as well.

 

Heck, the activision guys have put some stuff out recently, maybe a deal could be done with them?

 

If I had my choice I would want an Intelliviion II  With the same good controllers they made for the first one, but with corrected wiring and again, add some home brews.

Next would be a pretty low selling...  5200.  With nice centering controllers.  If these had nice controllers, wired like the originals...  You could sell a bunch of these.

 

Maybe, they should just do a line of replacement controllers!  Original Wiring and USB versions.   OH TO DREAM.

 

 

 

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let change gears... just ideas, don't kill me if there is no market for them. *IDEAS*

 

AtGames portables... What if the Atari Flashback Portable woodgrain edition was rereleased? What it if had the a2600 and a7800 cores (like the Blaze Retro Atari Handheld did)? Also that portable has a lot of buttons on it, so maybe we could get two button support. What about the sega portable, could it have different games on it? what if it was a Namco Arcade portable? Maybe Sega isn't doable anymore. How about a Legends Flashback Portable? Support the same sideloaded games that the Legends Flashback console supports.

 

Okay, what about table top arcade games like the My Arcade Micro Players? Could Atgames get into the tiny arcade cabinet space? How small can you shrink down a Legends Ultimate Arcade? That rotating screen on the Egret II was pretty nifty. What if you put a micro sd card slot on a mini tabletop arcade cabinet?

What about a Legends Flashback Unit that has more cores? the coleco core (libcv.so) was locked out on the LFBs but after hacking it, and unlocking it, it functioned very well. The On Screen Keyboard was helpful. Why was it locked out? Seems to me that the LFB could play coleco, intellivision, a7800. In fact we know it can because the hack is already doing it easily. Now, controllers will have to just be those genesis3 pads that have been with the LFBs. But they work. if atgames could get paddles working on the LFB then that would be awesome. They actually work for mame games as well.

 

I just want to point out, something the flashbacks have going for them that makes a case for the "emulates everything" box. REWIND FEATURE. Atgames rewind is pretty solid. It would be nice to have that feature on any game you are playing, regardless of system emulated.
 

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2 minutes ago, Bill Loguidice said:

That's always the key with these things. You need a strong handful of games with wide name recognition, but also recognizable games available to actually license for reasonable fees. A platform like the Atari 7800 doesn't really have either of those in its favor. Its biggest game names either are ones widely available elsewhere in one form or another or simply aren't available.

 

Although something of an upgrade in some cases over the poor Atari 7800 joysticks, I don't consider the Atari 7800 gamepads particularly usable. And they're certainly not iconic in any way like the 2600 joystick, so having them as the controllers wouldn't exactly help things. At one time there was a discussion about doing a different type of controller that could accommodate 7800 games and some arcade stuff, but that was before the shift in focus to home arcade and the general market shift in focus to home arcade over traditional plug and plays. Again, I just don't see a particular appetite from any of the relevant internal and external parties to invest much in radically transforming these types of products from what we've already gotten. Although not ideal in some ways, I again point to the Evercade stuff as great ways to play 7800 and Intellivision games. They're well-positioned to cater to that particular market. I'm sure they could also add ColecoVision stuff easily enough as well.

I get it Bill.

 

I like the evercade,  Beyond the handful of Intellivision Games they have, those controllers do not translate well for Intellivision games.


The Intellviision Flashback controllers were done very well.  Didn't like the Coleco ones nearly as much.

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I have to agree with the gentleman up there. 

I don't think people want an all out 7800 mini with licensed games, we are just saying add the core, let end users figure it out. I don't think the idea is to make the 2600 flashback a 7800, just give it the functionality to also play those games. There is no reason to even included any 7800 games built in.

Here are some products that included the 7800 core out of the box.

 

 

blaze-gaming-blaze-atari-pac-man-edition-retro-handheld-console-60-built-in-games-18250619617448.png

 

 

megaman_hdmi_for_shopify_1_800x.png

 

If these products can squeeze the a7800 core in, I'm sure the atari flashback can as well. Either AtGames can listen to the community and continue to improve their products, or they can just push the AFBX back out and slap an "11" sticker over the X. With how scarce the AFBX was, I don't see a huge problem with that, but, AFB9/X owners aren't going to want to get one. If it had 7800 support, they may be tempted to pick it up.

Edited by Slikatel
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2 hours ago, Bill Loguidice said:

At one time there was a discussion about doing a different type of controller that could accommodate 7800 games and some arcade stuff

@rocketfan, I thought you might find this interesting. I did.

Here are a couple examples of the iconic 2600 joystick with extra buttons. The Hyperkin Trooper II and the Blaze Retro Progressive Joystick. IMO Hyperkin did it better. In the case of the Trooper II, the two fire buttons are individual buttons, not just a clone of the fire button. Main problem is there is not way to easily press the extra fire button. The triggers are nice though. With the progressive stick, it was a lot bigger than a real 2600 stick, and that button on top was okay for some games, but it was a shoddy button. Its hard to explain but if you had any kind of pressure pushing the entire joystick shaft down into the base (which happens easily during normal play), you could net depress the button on top.

 

 

 

 

download.jpg

12312_800x.png

 

Something else I would like to see changed is atgames responses to these ideas. I have followed these threads for awhile and ideas (free ideas from the people buying the items) always get met with such negativity. I understand that enthusiasts have grand ideas for their dream machines, and that they may not appeal to the masses. But that doesn't make them bad ideas. They are great ideas. AtGames should really listen to the community. More and better cores, more accurate joysticks, possible extra button (Atgames has already added 4 buttons to the face), other controllers support, these are modest requests, Asking to tool a new shell or controllers is not a modest request. Seriously, why is there a guy that lurks around stifling fans ideas? That's totally not normal.

 

It's an old corny saying, but it's true. If you tell yourself, it can't be done, then you will never do it. If the AFB11 does materialize, we are all wishing for a new feature or something, anything. Quietly slipping in more atari cores for side loaded games seems like a no brainer.

 

BTW, the AFBX was already rereleased. The second years model had a reset hole on the bottom of the system. Some of us remember the old days of the flashbacks where it was just a new box and a recycled game list (AFB3-7), I'm sure none of us want to go down that path again with the AFB11. Hence all the posts saying no they are littered on goodwill website and in landfills already. If it isn't going to change in any significant way, I wouldn't change the name from AFBX to AFB11. I like the X branding. "Atari Flashback X 2". "Eleven" sounds like 9 too many.

I have to wonder if atgames doesn't want a cheap "emulates everything" plug and play because the legends arcade products are 'emulates everything' boxes in a way already. I also wonder if atgames themselves sees these flashbacks as disposable dollar store junk for the masses only. It's just a bummer because the rockchip sbc running these later devices is solid. Whereas an AFB1-8 I could really care less to own, but the 9 and X were cool little systems. There is a lot they can do. It sucks that it is crippled a 1button controller and only 2600 rom support.

 

 

Edited by Slikatel
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3 hours ago, Slikatel said:

I have to agree with the gentleman up there. 

I don't think people want an all out 7800 mini with licensed games, we are just saying add the core, let end users figure it out. I don't think the idea is to make the 2600 flashback a 7800, just give it the functionality to also play those games. There is no reason to even included any 7800 games built in.

Here are some products that included the 7800 core out of the box.

 

 

blaze-gaming-blaze-atari-pac-man-edition-retro-handheld-console-60-built-in-games-18250619617448.png

 

 

megaman_hdmi_for_shopify_1_800x.png

 

If these products can squeeze the a7800 core in, I'm sure the atari flashback can as well. Either AtGames can listen to the community and continue to improve their products, or they can just push the AFBX back out and slap an "11" sticker over the X. With how scarce the AFBX was, I don't see a huge problem with that, but, AFB9/X owners aren't going to want to get one. If it had 7800 support, they may be tempted to pick it up.

 

Unfortunately this Atari 7800 Handheld had a pretty bad emulation.

 

 

Edited by Defender_2600
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Those units are just examples of retro systems that have 7800 support built in without licensing 7800 games and including them built in to the unit. Just stick them on a micro sd card. As far as the emulation quality, I do not own one. And I'm not suggesting to use the same core as those units. As far as the AFB9/X community build, I think it uses the ProSystem libretro core. It seems decent.

 

BTW, TecToy in Brazil recently ran thru their AFBX units and I want to say they were priced at 100 bucks USD. Not sure how many they had, but they were redesigned and had the Type C power cable hardwired. So it was a new batch and they sold out in a couple weeks. They also have a Sega Master System mini, so it seems that mini consoles aren't dead everywhere.

I'm really not sure how it all even compares. The NES Classic craze and the minis that followed came years after the AFB1. By the time the AFBX rolled around it had taken enough cues from the NES Classic and just followed the formula, take retroarch, take the AFB9 and stick it in a more attractive shell in a smaller form factor. Which meant the community just ported over the AFB9 hack to the X and continued. There is a reason why the AFB2,8-X units are desirable and the 1,3-7 are not. The units you can add games to are the ones that are desirable. Clearly people are adding games to these systems. If I were at games, I would worry less about reshuffling 100 built in games and lean into the quality of the build and the adding of even more cores. Atari Arcade games seems like another no brainer to add to it.

A lot of the videos I see of the mini system collectors almost never have the AFB9/X anyways. I'm just guessing that a lot of the mini system craze collectors either passed on the AFB9/X because they either didn't even know about them, or did know about them and figured they were like the AFB3-7. A lot of people even here at atari age don't even know that the AFB was hacked or that it even got a new shell design, because the there were almost no real changes made the the various numbered units along the way. People stop caring. It sounds to me like atgames wants to go down that path again. Not surprised, really. they stuck the LFB in a cheap cabinet and want to charge you 500 bucks for it. I'm kind of starting to realize atgames stumbled onto something great by just doing it over and over and over year after year. They got lucky. I can see that the praise of atgames, too, is just a fad.

 

I guess the point I'm trying to make is, why does the mini system craze being over have anything to do with a flashback. They were around long before the fad and the actual collectors of the minis never cared to own them anyways. You know last christmas was the first year in awhile that a new flashback didnt come out. Kind of makes you wonder if they realized that was a mistake. Oh well, we all tried. At the very least we should all demand updated stella core and the ability to add box art to our sideloaded games. If they can't even do that much, and its just an AFBX with 10 extra games, I'm going to have to give it a hard pass, because I already have an AFB with the community build with 3000 games with art. 800, 5200, 7800, lynx, arcade,and thats why we are clammoring for a controller with more buttons, or support for other controllers atgames! That's also why everyone stopped asking for newer stella and add games with art, because the community got tired of waiting and did it themselves. That's why all this is so hard to stomach, its all already been done, people are now asking for the stuff we cannot hack, like extra buttons/pads, because we don't have the source code. We have to use the second joystick for extra buttons, which all just sucks because you can hook an AFBX up to a legends arcade cabinet via HDMI and arcade play link to use the ALU control panel with extra buttons to play your AFBX. it sure would be nice if I could just hook up some other USB pad up to the OTG adapter.

RANT OVER, I'm leaving this topic alone know.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Slikatel said:

And I'm not suggesting to use the same core as those units. As far as the AFB9/X community build, I think it uses the ProSystem libretro core. It seems decent.

 

The ProSystem emulator for 7800 is very dated, many of the best Homebrew games don't work, and other games will perform poorly.


If you want a better and complete gaming experience, the A7800 emulator (5.0 release) is a must.

 

 

Edited by Defender_2600
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1 minute ago, Defender_2600 said:

 

The ProSystem emulator for 7800 is very dated, many of the best Homebrew games don't work, and other games will perform poorly.


If you want a better and complete gaming experience, the A7800 emulator (5.0 release) is a must.

 

is it a libretro core? It doesnt seem so, looks like a mame fork. It has to be libretro to run on the flashbacks, I think. The flashbacks use something they call "Retroplayer" which appears to be a stripped down retroarch.

A7800 - the Atari 7800 Emulator - Atari 7800 - AtariAge Forums 

 

@rocketfan is the guy to ask about supported cores.

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6 hours ago, Slikatel said:

 Something else I would like to see changed is atgames responses to these ideas. I have followed these threads for awhile and ideas (free ideas from the people buying the items) always get met with such negativity. I understand that enthusiasts have grand ideas for their dream machines, and that they may not appeal to the masses. Bu t that doesn't make them bad ideas. They are great ideas. AtGames should really listen to the community. More and better cores, more accurate joysticks, possible extra button (Atgames has already added 4 buttons to the face), other controllers support, these are modest requests, Asking to tool a new shell or controllers is not a modest request. Seriously, why is there a guy that lurks around stifling fans ideas? That's totally not normal.

I don't think Bill/AtGames has responded negatively to your ideas, he just has said that the market has moved away from these cheaper plug-n-play devices ($70) towards the more expensive Arcade units ($300+). The fact the ideas may not appeal to the masses is precisely what would make them bad ideas. The Return On Investment for the engineering hours required to make those changes wouldn't result in the required profits from sales to justify those investments. AtGames hasn't released sales numbers for the AFBX, but if the initial AFB1 (not by AtGames) sold 0.5 million units and was a crappy NOAC, so I am guessing they were expecting something between 1-2 million.

 

AtGames should listen to anyone free options for about as much as they cost. We are only 2 data points from a vast array of opinions. A representative sample would require hundreds or a few thousand,  and not concentrated to AtariAge posters. 

 

They wont likely be changing tne iconic Atari joystick, even though 2+ buttons would be useful for the hacking community.  I'm not a lurker (I post), and I am super normal, just ask my court appointed psychiatrist. 

 

 

 

 

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"good idea" and "will sell well" are two different ideas.

 

no one is saying these ideas will sell well or make lots of money. thats agames job to figure that out. It doesn't mean these aren't all good ideas. Also, these kinds of threads are all over this forum and atgames canned responses are always the same. If its not a direction they are trying to move in, then its always "a bad idea".

 

you can tell them, add the 7800 core, and they will say, but we cant license many games.... no one said add Ninja Golf..... It just goes in circles.

 

this isnt a think tank. Its an Atari Age enthusiast thread. This stuff works both ways.

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