How To: Play Retro Atari 2600 Games on Your Nexus 7 Tablet

Play Retro Atari 2600 Games on Your Nexus 7 Tablet

If any gamer knows their gaming history, one name is synonymous with starting the gaming revolution—Atari. Founded in 1972 by Nolan Bushnell, Bushnell helped kickstart the home video game market with their line of Video Computer Systems, or what we would call video game consoles. Old time favorites like Space Invaders, Pac-Man, and Pitfall made the system a success among the public and cemented itself as a worldwide cultural phenomenon.

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Despite two updated consoles released (Atari 5200 and 7800), they ended up lacking the same success as the original 2600 system. Stiff competition by the likes of Sega and Nintendo would leave Atari struggling to recapture their once large fan base.

Even so, Atari is still a name many gamers of fond of, even if they weren't around in the '70s. Today, I'll show you how to play Atari 2600 games on your Nexus 7 tablet. Let's get gaming!

Step 1: Enable Unknown Sources

To install the emulator we need, you'll need to enable Unknown Sources in Settings -> Security -> Device Administration, because it's an APK file not in Google Play.

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Step 2: Download & Install Ataroid Lite

There used to be a free and paid version of an Atari 2600 emulator called Ataroid on Google Play, but unfortunately they are no longer there. Luckily, you can grab a mirror of the free version as an APK file right here for download.

Just follow the on-screen instructions to install it.

Step 3: Game ROMs

Atari 2600 games are some of the quickest downloads you'll every see. They're only a few kilobytes in size and you can fit all of them onto a 32MB flash drive.

You're technically not allowed to download ROMs (games) you don't own, but even Atari gives away retro Atari favorites for free. A quick Google search brings up plenty of links. Just put your games in a folder called 2600 ROMs on your Nexus 7 and...

Step 4: Game On!

Browse to your ROM folder in Ataroid and tap the game to begin playing.

Pitfall and Pac-Man, anyone? :-)

That's it! Give this emulator a try and see if you like it. If you don't like Ataroid, there's also an app called Droid2600 you can check out.

Full console image by joho345, Closeup image by moparx, Cartridges image by kreg.steppe

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