Atari Online: IE Brings Classic Games to the Web with HTML5 and Multi-touch

Today we’re excited to unveil the Atari Arcade!

 

It was summer of 1972 when Atari released its first arcade game – Pong. It was revolutionary entertainment, launching Atari to quickly become the definitive gaming platform of its era, selling 30 million Atari 2600 consoles. Most modern, successful video game franchises are still inspired by Atari’s original creative concepts.

Today with Atari and the help of our friend Grant Skinner we are launching Atari Arcade, continuing to showcase what’s possible on the web when you couple a modern browser like IE10 with a modern OS and the power of HTML5. Atari Arcade is an updated take on eight classic Atari games like Pong, Asteroids, Missile Command, and Centipede – all built with HTML5 and multi-player capabilities that come to life with a new Windows 8 touch device and Internet Explorer 10. It also works great in IE9 on a Windows 7 PC, or any other modern browser.

“Forty years ago gaming required a dedicated console, but today the web is an incredibly rich platform that has the power to drive games and bring entirely new methods of interaction with games, like touch, that were not possible in a browser just a few short years ago,” explained Nolan Bushnell, Founder, Atari. “What is exciting about gaming on the web is the reach it offers. It is not a potential audience of thousands, or millions, but billions of people that can access and enjoy gaming online!”

Developers, game on:

For developers, the team has created an opportunity to build your own games for the Atari Arcade platform. An Atari software development kit is available in the developer behind the scenes section of the site, along with new and updated versions of JavaScript libraries (Create.js, Easel.js, Sound.js) and new tutorials for building HTML5 games. All code is available on our IE GitHub repo here.

Learn how the team pulled off bringing Atari to the web in our behind the scenes video and then enjoy going deep with a series of tech tear-downs here.

 

 Perfect for Touch:

Just like the upcoming IE10 release with Windows 8 – the Atari Arcade is perfect for touch. Our goal was to create an experience that lets you interact naturally with your fingers or mouse or keyboard.

Games like Asteroids show what’s possible when a classic space-shooter is combined with advanced touch-first browsing capabilities of a browser like IE10. Your left thumb commands your spaceship. Your right thumb powers your acceleration while you blast asteroids. Warning: It’s more than a little addictive. Gaming with IE10 on a Windows 8 touch device offers the edge-to-edge gameplay that feels more like an app than a browser.

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Multi-touch gameplay in Asteroids in IE10 (left) and the original Asteroids (right)

Missile Command offers a different approach to touch-first gaming. As missiles reign down upon your city, your finger aims the cannons while you rapidly mash the screen. It’s quite a bit more difficult if you’re using a mouse. Hint: Alternate between fingers and aim slightly in front of the missiles for higher success.

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Rapid-touch gameplay in Asteroids in IE10 (left) and the original Asteroids (right)

Challenge Your Friends:

When we brought Atari Arcade to the web, a component of arcade gaming we did not want to lose was the fun of challenging your friends. With Atari Arcade, you can compete with your friends on Facebook or followers on Twitter to real time, multi-player battles, earn game achievements, and compete for the high score just like in an arcade.

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Over the next few months, new games will be released from Atari’s library of over 100 classics, but there are eight originals now available online:

· Asteroids

· Combat

· Centipede

· Lunar Lander

· Missile Command

· Pong

· Super Breakout

· Yar’s Revenge

 

Thank you. Atari Arcade is just the beginning of a new class of touch-first web experiences powered by IE10 and Win8. Thanks again to Atari and Grant Skinner for their partnership in making HTML5 web games easier for developers to build and fun for everyone like us who loves classic games!

Ryan Gavin

General Manager Internet Explorer