Jack Tramiel, founder of Commodore International and Atari Corp, passed away on Sunday, April 8, 2012 at the age of 83. Born in Poland, Tramiel’s family was sent to Auschwitz during the German invasion of World War II. After the war, he emigrated to the United States and repaired typewriters for the Army.
He is most famous for his role in the development of the Commodore 64, the best-selling home computer of all time. The quote most attributed to Tramiel is “We need to build computers for the masses, not the classes.”
After leaving Commodore in 1984, Tramiel’s new company bought Atari. How many of today’s gamers can say that typing programs into their family’s Commodore 64 was a gateway drug to a lifelong addiction? (We can!) How many remember the kid with the first Atari on the block being the coolest kid ever? Thanks to Tramiel, these children were the first to grow up in a new world of personal computers, with all of the marvels and carpal tunnel syndrome that entails.
And while we recognize the past, Boston hosted PAX East this last weekend. One of America’s larger gaming cons, all of today’s biggest companies presented forthcoming titles to the masses.
Also in this week’s roundup: GTA V release date rumors, a new Resident Evil 6 (6!) trailer debuts with a new release date, Jane Jensen’s Kickstarter project, and a father’s plea for his mixed-race daughter’s future as a gamer.
- Torchlight 2 could release a month after Diablo III, but will anyone notice?
- BioWare’s Mass Effect panel was of course one of the biggest panels at the show, with over 1200 folks packed into a room. Kotaku liveblogged the discussion about the endings, new Resurgence DLC, and absolutely no comment on Indoctrination theories.
- Adhesive’s Hawken created a stir for Mech fans with a new trailer. Also, it will be free to play!
- Bioshock cosplay!
- Rockstar Games, who recently released an updated Grand Theft Auto III for mobile platforms, is giving the original Max Payne the same treatment - available now.
- In other Rockstar news, a Rockstar North employee’s public resume listed GTA V with an October release.
- A father worries for his daughter’s self-esteem as she plays games and finds no female characters who look like her and an unwelcoming community ready to call her fat, ugly, and/or slutty. Predicatably, and depressingly, white male Kotaku commenters act like defensive jerks. It’s not exactly news, but it’s something to chew on.
- Jane Jenson, creator of the wonderful Gabriel Knight series for Sierra Online, has a Kickstarter for Pinkerton Road, a new studio for 3rd person adventure games for PC and tablet. Backers get beta keys, design bibles, and more.
- John Romero, developer of Doom and Quake, is working on a new MMO shooter. No word yet on if it will make you his bitch, circa Daikatana.
- Gears of War developer Epic Games has a PC-exclusive game in the works.
- A new trailer for Resident Evil 6 reveals it will be out on October 2. It can’t be worse than Resident Evil 5, right? Right?!