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Intellivision entertainment CEO Tommy Tallarico pitched in front of the players for owning the couch today when it comes to retro console gaming, speaking on the Intellivision Amico console in a speech on the online-only console Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) today.

Intellivision has now had to postpone its launch twice, and the latest plan is to launch the Amico on October 10, about a year after it was originally planned. Tallarico said the pandemic forced the company to postpone its launch, but it also gave the company an opportunity to provide more games for its launch.

The focus is on “this friendship, this multiplayer, this couch-co-op experience,” he said.

The Amico has a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, and its focus will be on enabling multiplayer games that you can play on the couch with your friends in the same room as Tallarico did in his youth. The design of the curvy, wedge-shaped console is meant to be friendly and approachable. They intend the console to be something that you can start using right away and it is not aimed at the more limited audience of hardcore gamers. He thinks this is an addition to other consoles and therefore doesn’t see others as competition.

It’s not about screaming graphics, it’s about having a good time with fun, simple, casual games to play with your friends.

A time machine

Above: The Intellivision Amico has a wood-paneled VIP model.

Image source: Intellivision

The original Intellivision is a Mattel game console that drove Atari’s money in the early 1980s. It was more advanced than the Atari 2600, with better graphics, and even had simple voices in some games.

Tallarico has been in the video game industry for 32 years and created the “oof” sound that has become the signature sound for Roblox games. Tallarico, who launched the Video Games Live concert series, Announced in 2018 that he had acquired the rights to the console and the original games and planned to re-launch Intellivision as a retro brand.

He rounded up many of the original Intellivision game developers. They are remaking some of the original games for the old Intellivision, like Breakout, but with modern designs.

Amico is the Italian word for “friend” and October 10th is Tallarico’s sister’s birthday. “My mother is very proud,” said Tallarico.

A handcrafted console

Above: Intellivision has a network of retailers selling the Amico.

Image source: Intellivision

The machine has 40 independently controlled LEDs on the console base and 12 LEDs on each console controller, for a total of 64, said Product Development Director Todd Linthicum. This ensures an infinite amount of expression through lighting.

Some games correlate the colors on the lights on the controller with the gameplay. The wedge shape of the console allows you to see the lights from all angles and adjust or turn off the brightness of the LEDs. The controllers can be charged in 2 hours and the batteries last 4-6 hours.

The controllers have capacitive color touchscreens, gyroscopes, force feedback, speakers, microphones and wireless contact charging. Two controllers nest in the console base, which allows them to be charged. You can also charge a controller with a USB-C cable. The controllers have four shoulder buttons and a touch wheel with a button. You can easily pause or quit a game with a home button. The controller can be moved in 64 directions and the controller screen is touch sensitive. If you take a controller to a friend’s house, you can play any games you own on your console on your friend’s computer.

The Amico has an HDMI output, a USB-C connection, a power connection and a microSD expansion slot for more storage. You can save up to 50 games on the device. Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) connectivity offers a new way of unlocking functions in games or interacting with the console. You can just take an item like a gift card and tap it on the console to unlock something. Intellivision will talk more about boxing games later. There are no loot boxes or in-app advertising. However, there are online leaderboards where you can compare your score with others.

Game line-up

With the Amico, Intellivision is aimed at families to play on the couch.

Above: Intellivision aims at families playing on the couch with the Amico.

Image source: Intellivision

Tallarico mentioned some of the games that are coming for the Amico.

The list includes:

  • Earthworm Jim
  • Night stalker
  • Inca gold
  • Shark shark
  • spade
  • Cornhole
  • Astro smash
  • Retro reinvented
  • Breaking out
  • Asteroids
  • Storm
  • Missile command
  • Burger time
  • Push and jump
  • Cloudy mountain
  • Sesame Street
  • Care Bears
  • Finnegan fox
  • Bomb squad
  • Space striker
  • Rigid Force Redux Enhanced
  • Dyno blaster
  • Major League Baseball
  • Blank page
  • Telestrations
  • Flying tiger

Brands that make games for the Amico include Hot Wheels and the Harlem Globetrotters, and there will be games based on charades, soccer, pool, card games, skiing and more.

And he told the original Ecco the Dolphin team to develop a new game called Dolphin Quest.

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