Atari strategy classic M.U.L.E. coming to iOS next week

It's been three decades since M.U.L.E. was first released on the Atari 800, but we've got no time for wistful memories as the classic strategy game is slated to return on iOS in mere days, appropriately as M.U.L.E. Returns.

For those to whom the acronym means nothing, M.U.L.E. is something of a cross between Settlers of Catan and Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri. The goal of M.U.L.E. is to thrive among the stars as a colonist on the planet Irata (that's "Atari" spelled backwards). Other colonists will be competing with you for resources, though they just as often can become valuable trading partners. At launch (and even today) M.U.L.E. was revered for its easy to learn, but difficult to master mechanics and near-infinite replayability - no mean feat for an Atari game released in 1983.

M.U.L.E. Returns makes its iOS debut on November 25. An Android version of M.U.L.E. Returns is scheduled to appear at some point in 2014. M.U.L.E. Returns is said to feature new, HD graphics, online leaderboards, and a faithful reproduction of the rules of the Atari original.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.