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Founded June 28, 1972
Headquarters Milpitas, California, USA

Atari, founded by Nolan Bushnell, was one of the first video game companies. They pioneered the industry with an arcade release of Pong, and later entered the home market with the Atari 2600, 5200, and the 7600. They also made a series of home computers like the Atari 400 and 800, as well as the later Atari ST. After the NES was released, Atari created a separate company called Tengen, which produced unlicensed games for home computers and consoles. During the video game crash of 1983, Atari was bought out by Midway, who ported several Atari games to home consoles. Atari was bought out again by Infogrames who changed their name to Atari SA due to the popular name recognition.


Music Development


Atari's arcade music software was called RPM (Rusty's POKEY Music) and was created by Rusty Dawe. The composers would have to write the music in Music-V Language. Dennis Harper and Peter Lipson later created RPM-2, an updated version of the first RPM that supported the Yamaha 16-bit FM synthesis chips that were used in the Yamaha DX9 synthesizers (YM2151).


According to Brad Fuller, RPM was converted to the NES, but it is unknown who did the conversion. It may have possibly been Lisa Ching since she designed the sound engine for some of the other consoles by Atari. The music was written in Music Macro Language.

Audio Personnel

These composers worked at Atari:


Game Platforms

Atari created several platforms both as video game consoles and home computers.

Video Game Consoles

Home Computers


Audio Chips

Picture Gallery