Without a doubt, Atari had a knack for getting some very nice covers done.
I think this machine was easily one of Atari's biggest mistakes, hands down. This machine should have used a new graphics chip or at least updated the resolution of the gfx modes and sprite count of the Antic/GTIA. It should havehad at least added 32 sprites, allowing multicolor mode with each sprite allowed its own pointer to it's own specialpalette in memory. The pokey was fine but it should have been 2 of them and it should have had a TIA and RIOTonboard to maintain the 2600 backwards compatibility built in. The joysticks sucked major hairy moose. The unitwas so f'ing big, quite honestly, they could have fit an Atari System 1 Arcade board in there...not an already outdated A8 with a new memory map....how friggin stupid was that?Actually, they should have just released the 7800 with more memory (32k), two pokeys and a separate processorto handle the maria so the main processor could still compute.I have a four port and it's just collecting dust. I'd just assume use my A8 anyway.
It was definitely superior to the 2600 in many ways but it should have also been compatible. The friggin thing wasso damn big it could have easily fitted an Atari System 1 arcade board in it...then you would have seen arcade exact ports at home. Paperboy, Stunn Runner and all thouse of that time period and after.Instead all the machine was was an Atari 8 bit computer, without the keyboard, horrible controllersand no improvements anywhere. Not ven backwards compatible to the 2600, which at the time shoudhave been priority.
I'm not familiar with that joystick. I'll need to see if I can get my hands on one of them! Looks sturdier than the Wico stick. I have to wonder if the decision by Atari to not sell the 5200 outside the US was because they saw the system as a short-term solution until they had something better ready, because there was a technical reason, or simply because someone just made a poor decision. It would have helped sales had it been released out of the US.