There is something to be said for the look of classic arcade machines. They felt solid, offered a unique way to play, and while they never felt premium, they allowed for a more immersive social experience.
If you’re someone who yearns for that experience and you also happen to have an extra USD 3,999 to spend, then the Atari Pong Table may be just the thing to spice up your living room, bar, or anywhere that you want to bring the retro social experience to.
As one would expect from the name, the Atari Pong Table brings the classic home arcade game to life in a new, tactile way. The Pong table offers physical pieces that work to bring the classic game to life in a new, 3D way that is mesmerizing to experience firsthand.
The pieces work via a series of magnets underneath the table with two giant knobs working to control the paddles. Even though it is built with 1 Vs. 1 play in mind, the table also offers solo play, with one of the sides being controlled by an AI.
The gameplay is what you would expect from Pong, and that is precisely what makes it so fun. It is a game that is simple to pick up and play and is fantastic to enjoy in this new tactile way. Jumping into a match with the Pong Table feels like a blast from the past, with the lights and sounds transporting the player back to a simpler time, one filled with bar smoke and classic arcade sounds chirping throughout the room.
The craftmanship of the Pong Table is what sets it apart from many other modern retro throwback devices currently on the market. From the seats to the build quality of the table, this is a device that was designed, built and shipped with care, and it shows. Even the weight of it is imposing, and you need two people to move it with any ease. While it looks exciting in pictures, it’s one of those things that you need to play to truly understand.
The team behind the Pong Table has also made a slightly smaller coffee table variant that would fit a bit better in a small home environment. That being said, it will still set you back USD 3,599 and is still very much a luxury purchase.
While it only comes with one game, this is the pinnacle of modern retro engineering. The Atari Pong Table is the must-own showpiece of any modern gaming room, and it blends old and new in a way that makes it feel timeless. While it is not for everyone — retailing at USD 3,999 — if you have the money and a love of retro gaming, the Pong Table is an arcade table well worth the investment.