The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]


Back In The Days Where PC Stood For Police Constable, Not Political Correctness …

… you used to get ads like this.

Amazing eh?

I honestly don’t know if it’s genius or utterly horrific?

Whether it contributed to selling more Atari 2600 game machines or led to – like their infamous ET game disaster – their glorious destruction is open to debate.

That said, I still have a soft spot for Atari.

Not only did they ignite my gaming and tech obsession … not only did they allow me to play PacMan at home rather than at the dodgy arcade in town … not only did they give Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs one of their early breaks … but they acted more like Rock Stars than Oasis, Motley Crue and Black Sabbath put together.

Mind you, they weren’t just about indulgence and play, they were also smart … above ad and ET game aside.

For example they copyrighted the ‘scrolling game’ platform which meant years later – when they were almost on their knees – they could sue companies like Nintendo, Sega for tens upon tens of millions of dollars.

What a shame they blew all this windfall making their terrible Jaguar Game system which sold about one product around the World.

And you can guess who bought it can’t you.

Bloody Atari.


32 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Best. Ad. Ever.

Comment by DH

And it’s is much better than this.

Comment by DH

Still drives better than wife #1 who crashed my car in an empty fucking car park because she was painting her fucking nails or something.

Comment by andy@cynic

Not the early midlife crisis German masterpiece?

Comment by DH

the german masterpiece that made an alfa fucking romeo look like a well made fucking machine? yes, thats the fucking one. piece of overpriced kraut shit. but still cheaper to run than wife #1.

Comment by andy@cynic

That could be Porsche’s new positioning.
“Sure we’re expensive, but we’re cheaper than alimony”.

Comment by George

Gold.

Comment by DH

Hang on, don’t you own another one?

Comment by Rob

Wow. Just wow. I can’t get over you bought an Atari Jaguar.

The ad is shocking too. ; )

Comment by Pete

I’ve just seen the comment at the bottom of the ad, telling you to circle 118 on the reader card. I’d forgotten all about the times when you could request a mass of direct mail to be sent to you by filling out a single card that came with the publication. I used to do it with a music magazine but my main motivation was to get some mail to open with my parents.

Comment by Pete

fucking loser.

Comment by andy@cynic

For once I deserve that comment.

Comment by Pete

I remember those too Pete. They used to appear in a musicians free paper and I also sent off for stuff. I probably still receive things from them now to be honest. I never knew if it was a true ‘reader service’ or proof an ad in the magazine worked. Given the paper died after a few years, let’s hope it was the former, not the latter.

Comment by Rob

Shared sadness.

Comment by Pete

Planner sadness.

Comment by DH

fuckwits.

Comment by andy@cynic

before stevie plays fucking video games id tell him to look in the mirror and fire his fucking stylist. i know that ad is from the 80s but he looks like the pimp in starsky and hutch.

Comment by andy@cynic

Harsh but fair.

Comment by DH

Stevie wants to know “what’s a mirror?”

Comment by Ian Gee

If someone had never played videogames, how would he know what type of game he would play and why would anyone believe him?

Comment by John

You’re giving advertising too much credit. Or maybe you’re giving people too much credit for thinking about things before they buy.

Comment by DH

Perhaps they were so smart, that they looked into their crystal ball and predicted cult meme status for this advert 30 years ahead. Atari, to rise again like a phoenix from the ashes.

Comment by Vince

Aren’t Atari owned by a French company now?

Comment by Pete

They own the name. The actual Atari company died years ago. This entry in Wikipedia proves it. “On June 22, 2014, Atari announced a new corporate strategy that would include a focus on “new audiences,” specifically “LGBT, social casinos, real-money gambling, and YouTube.”

Comment by George

Are you saying a gaming company owned by a French corporation couldn’t rise again Pete? Mind you, after reading George’s comment below, it sounds like you could be right. What a sad end to an amazing company. It’s worse than an A-lister now plying their trade in lunchtime Vegas shows.

Comment by Rob

The advertising may be from another era but the gameplay available on the Atari was arguably from a better era. Am I showing my age?

Comment by Lee Hill

I’m sort of a bit disappointed to learn you were once a video game aficionado Lee. Not just because I always thought you were better than that, but because we could have play-off games to decide our retainer, ha.

Comment by Rob

Or should I say ‘level of bonus’. Ahem.

Comment by Rob

Devastated.

http://tinyurl.com/n5a32xn

Though I hold out hope it’s the synthesizer ad that is found to be fake. Sadly I doubt it. Bloody internet. That aside, I still hold a soft spot for Atari despite the fact I bought their Jaguar game system. Which should have been a fake but sadly wasn’t.

Comment by Rob

You are so gullible.

Comment by John

Typical planner. Wrong information, wrong brief.

Comment by DH

[…] Philips starting to produce games that were so shit, they would give the infamous Atari ET game a decent run for its money … I still remember marching into John Lewis in Victoria Centre, walking up to poor salesman in […]

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