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Tempest 4000 is real, Jeff Minter is developing it and Atari is publishing it


Surprise! Atari has announced Tempest 4000, the sequel to the classic arcade game Tempest, is coming out later in 2017 for PC and consoles.

We don't have any assets of Tempest 4000, so here's a picture of a llama instead.

And get this - Tempest 4000 is being developed by Jeff Minter, creator of Tempest 2000, the 1994 remake of the Dave Theurer 1981 arcade game, Tempest.

Here's the official blurb, courtesy of Atari:

"In Tempest 4000, players are once again in control of the Claw, a powerful spacecraft equipped to destroy deadly creatures and other obstructions with rapid-fire shots on vibrant geometric prisms. With three game modes to choose from and 100 levels to conquer, players must eliminate all enemies as quickly as possible to survive and achieve that coveted spot at the top of the leaderboards."

Those three games mode are standard, pure and endurance. There's a 4K resolution and a retro soundtrack inspired by 1990s techno.

Here's a quote from current Atari boss Todd Shallbetter:

"The original Tempest is a beloved arcade classic with a unique style and intense, edge-of-your-seat gameplay.

"We're thrilled to be able to work with Jeff Minter again, someone who is a legend in the industry and has made a huge impact on the history of video games, to develop this highly-anticipated next installment of the Tempest franchise, updated with today's technology."

News that Minter is once again working with Atari comes as something of a surprise. Back in 2015 Minter said he was "beyond disgusted" with Atari after the company blocked the release of his Vita game TxK on new platforms over similarities with Tempest.

TxK, which Minter called a "distantly related sequel" to Tempest 2000, launched on Vita to critical acclaim in February 2014. Martin Robinson wrote in his 9/10 review: "All you need to know right now is that TxK is Minter at his finest, and it's absolutely mint."

Well, it sounds like the pair have patched things up. Here's a quote from Minter from Atari's press release:

"At the end of the day, video gamers always win. I am very happy to work with Atari again to bring a long-awaited sequel of Tempest to our legion of fans and a new generation of gamers worldwide."

As for Tempest 4000 itself, Atari hasn't released any screenshots or gameplay footage, but did say the game will be at Gamescom later this month, so hopefully it won't be too long before we see some footage.

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Tempest 4000

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Wesley Yin-Poole avatar

Wesley Yin-Poole


Wesley worked at Eurogamer from 2010 to 2023. He liked news, interviews, and more news. He also liked Street Fighter more than anyone could get him to shut up about it.