Questions about Atari

Pearl Jammzz

Established Member
I have sum questions about the Atari. The reason I want to know about it is juts basic knowledge about the different kinds and shit. Here are the Q's:

I know there were different kinds of Ataris......what were they and how were they different?

What attachments did each of the ataris have?

What games could each play?

What did the controller look like? if not same on all kinds of atari, then how do they all look?

then just add any extra info u have like how they saved games, if at all. if it has sum way amazing game I just have to play, etc.

Thanks guys, appreciate the help :)


Mid Boss
There were two atari models, the 2600 (a large wooden box) and the junior (silver lining, much smaller). Then there was the 7800, which pretty much tanked. The 7800 was the next generation Atari.

The 7800 could play 2600 and 7800 games. I don't know if it's vice versa, although I remember one game I had that required two buttons (more on that in second).

Aside from the common joystick, which was a regular joystick with one button, there were some funky controllers, namely... well, I can't actually name it. The controller was essentially two controllers, each had a knob that you could turn left and right, and each had a button. Two remotes, essentially. It went with a couple of games, Tac-Scan (or Tag-Scan? I can't read the cover art) by Sega (an isometric shooter, which was pretty neat) and a couple of pinball games (you'd have to hold both remotes and use the buttons for each flipper... kind of annoying, but neat at the same time). Finally, you could use a regular genesis game pad. B operated the regular atari button, C did the second. And vice versa, although you'd only have one button for the genesis (worked ok in streets of rage).

Saved games - they didn't. If you were on level ten of Commando, and turned it off, then you started from the beginning.

Personally speaking I spent many weeks of my life playing the atari, and I still do when i get the chance. The fun factor of games like Keystone Capers, Commando, Desert Raid, Tac Scan, and of course Ms. Pacman really haven't been carried over onto other systems.

This information may be wholly incorrect or requires an addendum - I have the Atari 2600 jr (apparently the more rare one) with the aforementioned stuff, and that's the extent of my knowledge.
Ok there were WAY more than two ataris.


PONG, 2600 (6 switch, 4 switch and JR, all the same just different cases), 5200 (could play 2600 games with adapter), 7200 (Could play 2600 games but not 5200 games), Jaguar, Jaguar CD


Lynx (two models, 2nd was smaller and better at batteries)


400, 800, XL series, XE series, XS series, and many more I'm forgetting

For LOTS more info on the consoler go here and read all about them.
I think the cartridges for the 5200 were just different but I didnt' have one so I don't know for sure.

If you looked at the contacts in the cartridge the 2600 games looked something like this


The 7800 was exactly the same but with an extra small board off to each side of the main contact board like this.

|||| ||||||||||||||||| ||||

Don't hold me to this it's been like 15 years since I've actually seen one of these. But basically it was set up so that a 7800 game just wouldn't fit into the earlier 2600. I think the 5200 just had a different setup entirely.

This is pure speculation, but didnt' the 5200 have a funky controller by comarison? The 7800 had an extra button compared to the 2600 but I think that the 5200 had a keypad or something...
As a fun aside ColecoVision made an Atari 2600 expansion console for their system (similar to say, the 32x on the Genesis). That's what I have to play my Atari games.