Atari Is Making Its Own Arcade Controller For The iPad

First, Atari’s recognizing their arcade roots a little more with the official Atari Arcade Duo Joystick device for iPad. Well sort of – the controls on this one could have been a little more authentic, I guess when I think of Atari arcade cabinets I think of things like cone start buttons and concave buttons. That and I wonder who decided on using Centipede (a trackball game) as the game of choice for advertising this joystick device. Atari’s mentioned that the game was now compatible with the “Atari® Arcade – Duo™ Powered joystick”. Being the curious type, I had to investigate further, and found this.

Turns out that there is a new iPad-compatible joystick in the works, which you can use to play all those classic arcade and Atari 2600 games in the aforementioned collection. Now you already know that there’s been an arcade joystick out for a while now called theiCade, which has awesome retro arcade looks, but is also quite pricey (at $100).

GameSetWatch has a couple of arcade related stories up – from these Arcade Pin buttons (whose designs I could swear I’ve seen somewhere before), to the launch of the new StarCade TV site which now allows you to bet on the outcome of the show for virtual prizes. You know, one thing that would help spice up the next IAAPA or Amusement Expo would be to have a Starcade-like booth on the floor, could be a lot of fun.

The Duo stick does away with iCade’s fancy arcade cabinet design, instead going for a minimal look that’s likely to keep the price much lower. Due to its open-air design, it’s also likely to do a better job at supporting both landscape and portrait modes than the iCade can.I have to say that I’m totally bummed out that there aren’t yet more games that take advantage of it – and I really want a trackball and spinner controller for many of the games anyhow. But if you’re looking for a way to play those joystick-based classics, and don’t want to break the bank, you might want to keep an eye out for the Atari Arcade Duo Joystick over at Discovery Bay Games. No word yet on a release date or pricing, but there’s no way it could be as expensive as the iCade.

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