Yar's Rutabaga Revenge: Atari's 'core focus' now on social, mobile games

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Dungeons & Dragons Heroes of NeverwinterLooks like Yar might exact his revenge on your farm next. Atari has announced three additions to its high-level staff, but more importantly, a big clue as to where the ancient company is headed next. According to a release, Atari will shift its "core focus to casual gaming experiences designed for mobile, social networks and emerging platforms."

The bolstering of the company's senior management with three new hires brings in collective experience from EA, Vivendi Games, King.com, Sprint and more. The lucky (lady and) gentlemen are Robert Mattes as CFO, Owais Farooqui as Senior VP of Digital Publishing, and Maria Pacheco as VP of Mobile.

Some might have seen this one coming, considering it will have released three Facebook games in less than a year once Dungeons & Dragons hits Facebook, but this the proverbial mission statement for the company going forward. Since December of last year, the company has released two Facebook games: Asteroids Online and most recently Fairies vs Darklings, neither of which have been particularly successful, according to AppData.

Alas, the company will press on into social games in search of its flagship Facebook game. Thankfully, it has a few ginormous properties up its sleeve like Missile Command, Centipede, Pong and Breakout. And with Dungeons & Dragons: Heroes of Neverwinter (pictured) headed to Facebook this fall, the company just might have a shot. Just look, those are some of the most well-known names in gaming. Come on, just try and tell me you wouldn't play (a legit version of) Pong on your iPhone.

Do you think Atari is making a good move, shifting its focus to social and mobile games? Which of its properties do you think has the best chance of "sticking" on Facebook? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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