The Intellivision Amico saga took another turn today as it was confirmed that the company is to release a smartphone application for iOS and Android that will effectively turn your handset into an Amico console (thanks, Brandon Sheffield).
The free Amico Home app is currently available on Android via a public beta and showcases two games: Astrosmash and Missile Command. Shark! Shark! and Side Swipers are expected to arrive in the months to come.
Once installed, you can connect your phone to a TV (should it offer that functionality) and get the full Amico experience without having to wait for the console to arrive – which, according to Intellivision CEO Phil Adam, could be some time. He has admitted that Intellivision lacks the funds required to produce the physical system, which was crowdfunded back in 2020. You'll also be able to turn other phones into Amico controllers using a different app.
"If you are one of our valued Amico Console pre-order customers, you can confirm your deposit on the site to enable access to Amico Home download codes for the console pack-in games as they become available on Amico Home for Android," says the statement. "If you are one of our valued Limited Collector's Boxed Edition owners, you can register your boxed edition products on the site to access download codes for those games as they become available on Amico Home for Android. Your physical products will, of course, still be good for installing the games on the Amico console."
Discussing the shift to smartphone apps, Adam said:
Our ability to begin manufacturing Amico consoles in volume requires securing additional investment. The release of Amico HomeTM puts us on a better footing to attract such investment or to eventually fund manufacturing from the proceeds of Amico HomeTM game sales. We remain dedicated to moving Intellivision forward, step by step, until we can deliver on the full vision of Amico, including the consoles. Thank you to all of our console pre-order and boxed edition game customers for supporting our mission to bring people together with simple, affordable, family entertainment.
Alongside the app, Intellivision is also launching Amico Club, "a central location to manage your Amico gaming experience." You'll be able to create your own Amico Club account to access "unique content, special offers and features."
Adam says that Amico Home will allow "hundreds of millions of people around the globe to turn their mobile devices into local-multiplayer gaming systems in a few easy steps," and that "this new channel will allow us to publish Amico games we’ve already developed and to continue developing new games in the exciting space of local multiplayer gaming with our unique Amico Controller." Adam also says that Intellivision plans to make the Amico Game API for Unity available to third-party and independent developers.