During a panel at E3 2021, legendary video game composer and CEO/president of Intellivision Entertainment Tommy Tallarico profiled the company’s upcoming home console the Amico, stating that he doesn’t see the console as “competing” with other systems such as the Nintendo Switch but being complimentary entertainment to gamers and their families.
First unveiled in October 2018, the Amico is now slated for an October 10, 2021 launch date after numerous setbacks. Intellivision has the goal of providing accessible, family fun at an affordable price. Tallarico reiterated the mission statement during a video presentation, explaining that all games must be easy to learn, be rated E or E10+ by the ESRB (or equivalent for markets outside the US), and either be exclusive to the console or have features made exclusively for it.
All games must also be sold digitally for under $9.99 USD, although it was announced that physical editions for collectors will be sold at a higher price.
Intellivision also promises that there will be no ads, downloadable content, loot boxes, or in-game purchases whatsoever.
Today’s conference shared some details about upcoming games, including a host of party titles, sports games, and competitive card and board games. One standout is Dolphin Quest, which is developed by the creators of the SEGA classic Ecco the Dolphin. Another is Finnigan Fox, a remake of 2018 indie hit Fox n Forests.
Modern day remakes of classic titles such as Asteroids, Burgertime, Breakout, Frogger, Centipede, Lode Runner, and Utopia have also been announced.
Undoubtedly the most anticipated title for the Amico is Earthworm Jim 4, which is helmed by many of the team behind the first two games; Tallarico himself was the original games’ composer. No new footage of this title was unveiled today, with the last update being a short “first look” gameplay video from August 2020. That video can be seen below.
The Amico also boasts an impressive amount of features. Controllers are outfitted with a touchscreen, motion controls, LED lighting, and a disc-shaped control pad that is pressure sensitive and can move in 64 directions. Controllers are also completely wireless, using a dock for contact charging.
The E3 conference also shared that purchase data is stored in the controllers, allowing players to simply take their controller to a friend’s place so that both can play the same games regardless of the console.
The Amico will be available in a variety in styles, but at different price points. The standard Graphite Black and Glacier White consoles are priced at $249 USD, while the vintage Woodgrain console is $279 USD and the futuristic Galaxy Purple will run $299 respectively.
All consoles will come with 6 pack-in games free of charge.
The original Intellivision console was conceived at Mattel Electronics in 1977, and released in the US in 1979, competing directly with the Atari 2600. The company has seen numerous revivals over the years, such as the Flashback plug-and-play console released in October 2014. Tallarico acquired the rights to the Intellivision brand in May 2018 and quickly began development of the Amico.
Tallarico himself is notable for being a giant in the industry, and is enshrined in the Guinness Book of World Records for having contributed to the most commercially released games, as well as conducting the largest symphony performance ever seen live with more than 752,000 in attendance in a show in China. Tallarico is also the founder of the famous Video Games Live concert series.
Do you plan on picking up an Amico? I personally am impressed with some of the hardware, and recognize the passion the developers have for the console, although the price point and current games on offer have kept me from buying into it as of yet. We’d love to know what you think below!