In 1979, Mattel Electronics released what would be the first viable competitor to Atari with its new Intellivision console. In order to separate themselves from Atari, Mattel released a series of ads starring acclaimed American writer George Plimpton. In these ads, Atari and Intellivision were placed side by side and Plimpton compared the visuals of both devices, speaking highly of the Intellivision console while describing the Atari VCS as an inferior product. In what became a quote that started a (console) war, Plimpton stated:
“Atari vs. Intellivision? Nothing I could say would be more persuasive than what your own two eyes will tell you. So compare for yourself. Game for game, feature for feature, I think you’ll find Intellivision is clearly superior.”
In the end, Atari won the sales race, Intellivision outlasted the VCS. In the end, Intellivision was sitting on store shelves next to the Nintendo Entertainment System.