Atari Panther
Type Console Prototype Developer Atari
Proposed Date 1991 Region(s) N\A
Proposed Price N\A Games Released 3 (protos)
     by Dark Watcher
The Atari Panther was scheduled to be launched in 1991 at the same time as the Nintendo SNES.  Technically it could have outperformed Nintendo's machine.  Even though the Panther used a 16-bit Motorola processor, the system used a 32-bit object oriented graphics processor.

The Panther was nearing completion when Atari was approached to assist in the development of a multiprocessor console dubbed "Flare 2".  Atari continued to develop both consoles simultaneously.  Development of Flare 2 began to progress at a rapid pace.  The Atari USA's President of Software Development at this time, Larry Segal, made the costly decision to halt all development on Panther in favor of the renamed 64-bit Atari Jaguar.  The games that were written for Panther, such as Crescent Galaxy and Cybermorph, were subsequently converted to the Jaguar console.

The Panther was near its final stages of development when it was suddenly scrapped.  It will never be known if the Panther would have been the console to steal the thunder from Sega and Nintendo during the 16-bit console era.  Perhaps if they had completed the Panther before the SNES things would have turned out differently for Atari.
Atari Panther proto
     Protos & Dev Units
Atari Panther Development system [1]

Conceptual drawings based on technical documents obtained for the Atari Panther [2]

[1] Courtesy of Home Computer Museum
[2] Courtesy of

     For the hardware enthusiasts out there - all the detail you\we love.
Though this system was never released, detailed specs have been made available due to the finding of an Atari Panther tech manual in a dumpster outside of Atari's HQ.
Processor Type  Processor Speed  Other Processor Information RAM \ Video RAM
Motorola 68000 (16-bit) 16 MHz Transputer Blossom video card 32 KB fast static RAM
Screen Resolution Color Palette Polygons \ Sprites Audio
320 x 200 262,144 colors / 7,860 on-screen 65,535 sprites \ 2000 Simultaneously DSP (29 bit), Stereo PCM (16 bit), 25 Voices (independent)
Media Format Media Capacity Games Released Other Supported Formats
Cartridge 6 MB 3 (protos) None
Internal Storage External \ Removable Storage Game Controllers Other Game \ Peripheral Devices
64 KB ROM None 3 button Joystick None
Controller Ports Network Ports Other Ports Audio \ Video
Two (2) None Two Headphone Jacks RF, RGB, S-Video
Power Supply Other Outputs  Other Details \ Notes
Unknown None None
Not available

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