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Xante


Founded by Princeton/Wharton alumn Roger Collins in 1983, Xante had plans to be a major player in the videogame software distribution market. With a business plan similar to Romox, Xante planned to establish attended kiosks that could produce cartridges on demand from a catalog of games. The customer would choose a game, the game would be downloaded over a phone line, and then burned to an EPROM right on the spot. A simple label and instruction sheet would be produced to accompany the game, as well as a rather generic box. According to Collins, the cartridges were actually reprogrammable like Romox's, however they were not marketed as such, and a new cartridge was created with each purchase.

Although Xante had plans to produce cartridges for many different game systems, they concentrated on the 2600 since that was the most popular system at the time. They had secured licenses from many software companies such as Imagic and Twentieth Century Fox, but negotiations with Atari were stalling. Retailers were more open to the idea because it reduced their inventory costs.

The project was started with a limited catalog in Tulsa, Oklahoma convenience and grocery stores. Unfortunately, before it could take off on a national level, software licensing issues and the videogame market crash of 1984 caused Xante to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. They never made it outside of Tulsa, and consequently their cartridges are very difficult to find. Their games are instantly recognizable from their blue casing and embossed logo. Xante was well funded and ahead of its time, but were an unfortunate casualty of licensing and the great crash that hurt so many other companies.

Today, Xante founder Roger Collins operates RBC Ventures, a Tulsa based venture capital company.

 
SystemTitle LabelModel #YearRarity TV CartManBoxROMShot
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