AARP Eye Center
Back in the day, if you got an Atari 2600 or Intellivision video game console, you ruled the neighborhood. And now, some 40 years later, those systems are making a comeback — in a way.
AARP Membership — $12 for your first year when you sign up for Automatic Renewal
Get instant access to members-only products and hundreds of discounts, a free second membership, and a subscription to AARP The Magazine.
While online play, complex gaming and massive, immersive worlds rule today’s high-tech scene, powerful new systems that mimic the look and feel of old devices are tapping into a market for pixelated nostalgia. “Retro is big right now,” says Ryan Burger, 49, publisher of Old School Gamer, a magazine and website. “The kids who grew up with these consoles are remembering their days of playing games and have the money now to buy back some memories.
$300, plus $60 per controller
With its wood-grain front panel and old-school joystick, this unit screams ’70s. One key difference from the original Atari console, though: There’s no slot for cartridges. Instead, games are streamed via apps or downloaded from the internet. More than 100 classic games, going back to Pong, are included, with more available for purchase. And if you’d rather play with a more modern controller — the kind with a directional pad — you can get that, too. Also remember that this is modern technology. When you’re not in the mood to revisit the past, add a wireless keyboard to the unit and use it as a PC.
$100 and up (available January 14)