gamer culture

Strong Museum Adds More Atari Design Materials To Collection

by Jeff Cork on Dec 17, 2015 at 09:28 AM

The Strong Museum of Play in Rochester, New York boasts an impressive collection of classic-gaming materials as part of its International Center for the History of Electronic Games. That collection has grown, with the acquisition of more than 2,000 drawings, mock-ups, and prototypes from Atari circa 1976-84.

The collection, called The Cort and Barbara Allen Atari Packaging Design Collection, provides valuable insight on how Atari creatively made its primitive-looking games grab the eyes of shoppers. Jeremy Saucier, assistant director at the International Center for the History of Electronic Games, explains more about the era in an excellent blog post. He shows how the company's graphic artists took the Atari 2600 game Surround and imagined it as a dramatic computer battle on the box, and much more.

“Packages protect and preserve, but they are also expressive," Saucier says. "Atari’s vibrant video game packaging often bridged the gap between the fantastic game worlds that players imagined themselves entering and the abstract and blocky graphics on their video screens,” says Saucier. “This artwork and documentation, which add to The Strong’s exceptional collection of other materials related to Atari, help us better understand how a gaming pioneer packaged and sold its products to a new video game playing public.“

[Source: The Strong Museum]