Atari VCS Is in Final Stages of Pre-Production, New Images Released

New images of the Atari VCS console have been released alongside an update from the console creators that says they’re still shooting for a March 2020 release date. Atari COO Michael Arzt provided these details and more in a Q&A session Atari published on Medium this week to offer updated information on the status of the Atari VCS and when it’d be in the hands of those who want it. For those who backed the console on Indiegogo, there was unfortunately news of yet another delay.

The Atari VCS is currently marching towards its March 2020 release, though that wasn’t always the plan. It was originally supposed to release in March 2019 but missed that window after Atari announced its plans to work on the console more which led to a delay. Welcome news for backers that came from the Medium Q&A said the March 2020 release is definitely still on, the Arzt had some production photos to back up the claim.

“I am excited to be able to share some initial photos of the first Atari VCS pre-production units, fresh off the assembly line and on their way to the extensive testing processes,” Arzt said, referencing the photo below and others which were shared in the post. “We are deep into the final stages of pre-production and heading toward mass production, which is the focus of our attention today.”

After reaffirming that the console will be out in March 2020, Arzt broke the bad news to Indiegogo backers. Those who backed the console that way were expecting to receive the system by the end of 2019, but it looks like that’s not the plan anymore. Indiegogo backers are still the priority, Arzt said, but the delivery of the console to that group will take a few more weeks than anticipated.

“When we adjusted our schedule in March 2019, we were aiming for year-end 2019 delivery goal for the Indiegogo backers,” the COO said. “Today, given the work still to be done, including the final stages of our certification and testing cycles, we now realize we will need a few more weeks than anticipated. Our teams, factories, and supplier partners are all working incredibly hard to make it happen; but as we all know, the devil is in the details, and we can win or lose a few days during each remaining step and will update our Indiegogo backers as soon as we have a final date.”

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Arzt reassured backers that Atari is “talking weeks here, not months” regarding the delay. Other details included confirmations of original games as well as native apps and a browser to explore content.

The Atari VCS is planned for a March 2020 release, and you can see the full Q&A here.