As I write this, I’m sitting in an airport restaurant on my way to San Antonio, TX for PAX South. Gamers have many different options these days to occupy their attention when traveling. Games on iPhone or Android are better and more sophisticated than ever, and the Nintendo Switch makes portable gaming on big-name titles easier than anything. But the handheld that has never let me down is my PlayStation Vita — which happily has a new release for diehard fans like me — Atari Flashback Classics.
Atari Flashback Classics, as the name implies, is a collection of over 150 Atari titles in the palm of your hand. This includes games from the Atari 2600, the Atari 5200, and even arcade-exclusive releases. Atari was kind enough to send me a review copy, and I must say that Atari Flashback Classics absolutely nails what’s great about its library of classic titles and marries it perfectly with modern, portable features.
For starters, the game offers online and local multiplayer. Relive the glory days of crushing your opponent at the pizza joint arcade cabinet, but with a modern twist. Add on to the fact that Atari Flashback Classics maintains an online global leaderboard, and you can see how you really stack up against the competition in Missile Command or Asteroids.
The game collection has also been very intelligently adapted for the modern era by letting players take advantage of all the Vita’s varying inputs. Prefer to play using the analog sticks? No prob. Rather use the d-pad as a more digital input? You can do that. If you absolutely love the touch controls, feel free to use those as well!
But my favorite thing about Atari Flashback Classics is that for the gamer on the go, the titles in the game provide you the flexibility to determine the length of your gaming session while feeling you’ve accomplished something. You can squeeze in a bite-size gaming session during a break or a marathon session during a layover — and with so many titles to choose from, I guarantee you’ll never get bored.