In 1982, Emerson, a manufacturer of low-priced consumer electronics, released the Arcadia 2001. The system had a suggested retail price of $200, but generally sold for around $100, even when it was relatively new in stores. It contains 28K of RAM (Random Access Memory), but most of the game cartridges use only 8K.
The Arcadia 2001 is a very small unit, making the Intellivision II look bulky in comparison. Two input (output?) ports are on the back of the unit, though no peripheral was ever produced or even announced for the system. The two controllers, which were obviously patterned after the Intellivision's joypads, have bubble keypads and come with little joysticks that can be screwed into the control discs. Also, the controllers have two fire buttons, one on each side.
Activision and Imagic, along with the rest of the third-party manufacturers of the time, took a pass on the Arcadia 2001. All of the 20+ U.S.-released games available for the system were published and developed by Emerson. The cartridges, most of which came with plastic keypad overlays, were produced in two sizes; some were very similar to standard Atari 2600 carts while others were as long as Xonox Double-Enders. The reason for the differing sizes is unknown.
The Arcadia 2001 never made much of a dent in the videogame marketplace. It was technologically superior to the Atari 2600, but lacked the mass appeal and marquee titles of the venerable Atari system. Also, its system specs were minuscule in comparison to those of two systems that were released later that same year, the ColecoVision and the Atari 5200. One thing that did set it apart was its 12-volt power supply, which meant that the system was semi-portable. You could hook it up to the type of auto batteries used in boats and campers, or better yet, the battery pack found in most portable television sets.
Although many gamers are under the impression that the Arcadia 2001 doesn't have a single coin-op conversion in its library, a handful of obscure Arcade ports made it to the system, including Jungler, Spiders and Pleiades. Many of the other games are clones of popular Arcade titles, such as Phoenix (Space Vultures) and Space Invaders (Space Attack). A few original games stand out from the pack, including Star Chess (referred to as Space Chess in Emerson's catalogue), which predated Archon, the popular computer chess simulation.
Despite the fact that the Arcadia 2001 was in production for only two years, it was available under different names (such as Tele-Fever and Leisure-Vision) in many countries throughout the world, including Germany, Italy, Japan, France and New Zealand. The system died shortly before the "Great Videogame Crash of 1984." ~ Brett Alan Weiss, All Game Guide