Thursday, February 2, 2012

Atari 2600 Catalogs

Today there is seemingly an infinite number of ways to promote video games (downloadable demos, websites, blogs, commercials, podcasts, youtube, twitter, facebook, etc).  Need a screenshot, video, or review?  No problem, they are out there on the web, en masse. 
It wasn’t so easy back in the days of the Atari 2600 though.  Back then you had……..(drum roll)……..a catalog.
Atari was well known for printing some amazing catalogs to promote their game library.  These catalogs would have exciting, detailed art work to advertise the company’s latest and greatest games. 
Catalogs were packed in with games when you bought them.  These catalogs weren’t small either.  Often times, they would advertise up to 50 titles. 
For me, these catalogs gave the opportunity to see what exciting adventure was out there, waiting for me to find and play.   It also served as a nice presentation piece to assist with formal begging.   There is no telling how many times I gave copies of the catalogs to my parents with all the games “I needed” circled with a red pen. 
In going through some things today, I found a couple of Atari catalogs from 1981 and 1982.  A lot of games were still circled in red ink.  Maybe my Mom will get me one for my birthday.  It still doesn’t hurt to ask…..

To see many of the classic video game catalogs, check out the following website:


  1. It's funny that now you can get all their popular titles in a 4 pack for a dollar now on the iPhone.

  2. I bought some of them awhile back for my iphone and also picked up the two atari greatest hit collections for the DS.

    They were all fun to play, but none of them felt quite right.

    I guess you just get used to the atari joystick for those games.