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OUYA Android Game Console Available In June

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the just-in-time-for-national-adopt-a-cat-month dept.

Android 196

An anonymous reader writes "The WSJ reports that OUYA, the $100 Android-based gaming console, will reach retail availability in June. The makers have partnered with Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, and Target for distributing the devices. The console will come with a controller (which has the traditional thumbsticks, D-pad, buttons, and triggers as well as a built-in touchpad), and additional controllers will be sold for $50. OUYA CEO Julie Uhrman said, 'For the last year or two years all we've been hearing is that the consoles are dead. The reason is there isn't new, innovative intellectual property. It's expensive to develop on it. You're seeing a major shift of games being developed on the television. Our viewpoint has always been that console gaming isn't dead, the way we think about it hasn't changed. We're bringing the best screen and the best device to interact with that by creating a platform that is open.' There was a recent 'Game Jam' to create game prototypes for the console; you can browse the 166 entries."

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196 comments

frosty piss available now! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42801673)

get ready to chug a cold one!

Ouya was more relevant, before. (5, Interesting)

Seumas (6865) | about a year ago | (#42801727)

I withdrew my backing after the first day of hype -- and I'm pretty easy to lure into your Kickstarter (I've backed about 450 of them, so far). I think the only value in this product will, ultimately, be in its conversation value as something sitting on your shelf in fifteen years. With the PS4 and the next Xbox coming out this year as well as the various Steam Boxes and the next round of high end GPUs for PC about to drop, the Ouya's brief appeal seems even less relevant. Most of the excitement at the time had been that it was touching on this mass appeal for *some* sort of new hardware in a world of aging seven-going-on-eight year old consoles this cycle.

Worse, the whole "we will support Ouya" thing became a plague on every single game related kickstarter afterward. And if you didn't say you were going to port your game to Ouya, people would spam your comments non-stop about "hey, you should contact Ouya and consider porting your game to it". Because when you're trying to produce a game on the cheap that is iffy to begin with, the best thing to do is hitch that wagon to an unreleased piece of hardware that will probably have little success and certainly not offer you anything remotely near the existing platforms that you're already developing the application for, like the PC. Blech.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (5, Insightful)

exomondo (1725132) | about a year ago | (#42801809)

I reckon a good amount of them will be bought just to be used as a cheap XBMC box.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42801947)

How is this different than Android-on-a-stick PC?

http://www.laptopmag.com/review/stick-computers/android-mini-pc-rk3066.aspx , being one such example.. aliexpress has others.

Input device for Android-on-a-stick? (3, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802135)

An Ouya controller includes physical buttons and a trackpad, and games will be designed and balanced around this input device. What input device comes with the RK3066 Android stick? Sure, there's a USB hub, but there's really not much standardization in the button layout of USB game controllers [pineight.com]. I'm not fully convinced that all users will have the time to sit through control calibration ("Press up, down, left, right, jump, shoot, in that order") for each new game that they install.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (4, Informative)

SomePgmr (2021234) | about a year ago | (#42802289)

I'm using one of the common Android-on-a-stick hdmi dongles, and I've played with others. They're not very good.

The Ouya out-specs most of them, the software ecosystem sounds promising, and the controller that works will be nice. Not all TV's do CEC and the gaming function of the controller is nice.

I really hope these work out to be good devices.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

Puzzles (874941) | about a year ago | (#42802035)

My Wii is a not as cheap Netflix box. I don't do anything else with the thing.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802169)

I reckon a good amount of them will be bought just to be used as a cheap XBMC box.

And the rest will be bought just to be used as expensive ROM emulator boxes.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802211)

A Raspberry Pi makes a much cheaper XBMC box.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | about a year ago | (#42802399)

I was going to get another Roku box for the bedroom. If this can run Netflix and Amazon, I'll put my living room Roku in the bedroom and put a Ouya in the living room for the added benefit of games.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

richtopia (924742) | about a year ago | (#42802569)

For me it is XBMC in addition to emulators. I want to play Mario Kart on my television again, but my SNES is long gone.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (3, Interesting)

ZiakII (829432) | about a year ago | (#42801811)

Eh, I backed. I think it will be fun to fool around and program on due to the following: Android SDK, Connectable to my TV, Interface that does not require touch.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about a year ago | (#42801883)

Given a controller and the x86 version of Android couldn't you just play all its games on a PC - or even a phone or tablet which i suppose you could connect to your TV? Is there any proprietary software you know of on it that ties you to an ouya console and controller?

The biggest problem i see with it is that it won't get exclusivity, if you're developing for ouya you might as well develop for Android in general - even if you do need a controller - as your market is then WAY bigger.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#42801935)

Why would you want to do x86?

Anything that uses the NDK is going to be painfully slow when you have to emulate ARM. Most games will use the NDK.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

vlm (69642) | about a year ago | (#42801985)

Because you can go to androidx86 and flash an old netbook for basically free. My old eee has a VGA output, my tv has a VGA input, etc.
Or any more modern desktop-ish machine with a HDMI output video card, like the one in my mythtv frontend.
I've never connected my androidx86 EEE 1000 netbook to my TV but I could...

Pricing of Android x86 apps; PC-to-TV marketing (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802195)

Because you can go to androidx86 and flash an old netbook for basically free.

Provided two things happen. First, you have to get an old netbook; they're discontinued now, and supply will dwindle as diehard netbook fans such as myself buy used netbooks to replace netbooks that eventualy bite the dust. Second, the game developer has to recompile the NDK parts of the game for x86, upload it to Google Play Store, and charge a fee competitive with other games on the same store, as opposed to selling a Windows or GNU/Linux version on Steam for what would probably be a higher price. The problem here is that back when Google Play Store was called Android Market, users in a lot of countries were left out of being able to buy paid applications, forcing developers to make their apps ad-supported to gain an audience. This in turn pushed price expectations down even among users in countries with paid apps.

I've never connected my androidx86 EEE 1000 netbook to my TV but I could...

The difference is marketing. Ouya is marketed as a set-top device. To my knowledge, ASUS never marketed the Eee PC netbooks as "Connect to your TV!" despite that most LCD TVs include VGA+audio in that works with a netbook's VGA+audio out.

Re:Pricing of Android x86 apps; PC-to-TV marketing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802283)

Does your netbook even do 720p?

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about a year ago | (#42802183)

Why would you want to do x86?

Anything that uses the NDK is going to be painfully slow when you have to emulate ARM. Most games will use the NDK.

Because if you have the x86 version of Android you wouldn't be emulating ARM - which is why i suggested that rather than the emulator.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

pavon (30274) | about a year ago | (#42802501)

The OS won't be emulated, but the vast majority of the games that are written with the NDK won't run on x86 without emulation.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802375)

You see being able to develop and sell without restriction on a massively widespread platform is a big problem?

Exclusivity only helps the console maker, not the game developer (other than the chunk of cash the console maker pays them for it), and certainly not the consumer.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about a year ago | (#42802629)

Exclusivity only helps the console maker, not the game developer

Of course, and that's exactly what's needed, otherwise who will buy an Ouya? Why not buy another platform that has all those games and more.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#42801945)

I'm far from certain that they'll succeed as some sort of bold new flavor of console(as you say, the console incumbents are gearing up for a fresh spin, and PC gaming is pretty cheap, at least for undemanding titles, when you consider that you probably own a PC already); but I'm in for one on the hope that they'll be a version of those little Android 'stick PCs' or "mini PCs' that might actually remain stable long enough to get some firmware that isn't total shit.

I've played around with a few of the ebay special ones(which are cheaper, 50-80 dollars) and they are much more convenient than a PC to have sitting by the TV; but the firmware is pretty dreadful and there is such a mass of cryptically branded models flying around that the Cyanogenmod-and-similar brigade isn't too much help. Paying a little bit more to get a somewhat more powerful, and quite possibly better supported(1st and 3rd party) implementation of the idea is pretty attractive.

I doubt that it'll replace my PC for actual gaming duties; but media frontend and similar duties are handled in a different room entirely, so there is enough space to share.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (2)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802225)

PC gaming is pretty cheap, at least for undemanding titles, when you consider that you probably own a PC already

Consoles have two noticeable advantages over PC gaming. First, using one doesn't interfere with another household member's use of the family PC. Second, console games are more likely to support two to four gamepads because consoles are far more likely to be connected to screens big enough for two to four people to fit around. I don't imagine that many people, other than the comparatively small population of Slashdot, AVS Forum, and other geek hangouts, already own a second PC just for the living room TV.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (3, Insightful)

Optic7 (688717) | about a year ago | (#42802573)

You forgot the main, traditional advantage of consoles over PCs: that they're generally much less of a hassle to configure, use, and maintain.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (4, Insightful)

jdastrup (1075795) | about a year ago | (#42801967)

I think the idea of "cheap console games", if it exists, will happen with this console. We can get $0-$10 games on our smartphones and tablets, but those are almost always 1-player games on a tiny screen. If this offers a cheap marketplace for console-style games, I think it's great.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

realmolo (574068) | about a year ago | (#42802073)

But you can already get cheap games on Xbox Live!. Cheap games are a reality NOW. At least, for games that aren't "AAA"-level games. Which are the kind of games the Ouya is going to get.

I think the Ouya is a neat idea, but at $100, it's too expensive for what it is. If they could get it down to $50, that would be something. That's cheap enough that it's an impulse buy. Still, I think it has a good chance of doing pretty well.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (3, Interesting)

jdastrup (1075795) | about a year ago | (#42802147)

sure, XboxLive, with a $50/year fee.... You can't even watch Netflix on the Xbox with a paid Netflix subscription without XBox Live. As for the cheap/free game selection, I haven't looked in a while, but wasn't very good. I was under the impression that the dev fees for XBox were to high for most of the small game devs.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802285)

sure, XboxLive, with a $50/year fee....

the games are on XBLA, which you don't need XBox Live Gold for. even then fuck it's less than $5 a month.

I was under the impression that the dev fees for XBox were to high for most of the small game devs.

nope. no different to iOS.

Xbox Live Silver vs. Gold; $99/yr XBLIG fee (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802291)

sure, XboxLive, with a $50/year fee

As I understand it, buying cheap single-player or local-multiplayer games from Arcade or Indie Games requires only Xbox Live Silver, which is available without charge to anybody who hasn't modded his console or cheated in an online game, not Xbox Live Gold, which carries a fee.

I was under the impression that the dev fees for XBox were to high for most of the small game devs.

In the ten countries with Xbox Live Indie Games, the expenses to develop an XNA game are a PC running the console maker's OS, a console, $99 per year, and a 30% cut of revenue. Apple copied that arrangement exactly for the iOS and Mac App Stores. I'm under the impression that a developer who makes it big in Indie Games is likely to have the money to step up to Arcade [ign.com] for its next title.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (2)

cayenne8 (626475) | about a year ago | (#42802339)

Geez, I was thinking of buying one just to get and keep laying around for when someone comes up with a neat 'hack' for using it for something besides games.

I was thinking of doing that just because it was so cheap...hell, I've had many bar tabs over the years that were more than $99...

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about a year ago | (#42802249)

We can get $0-$10 games on our smartphones and tablets, but those are almost always 1-player games on a tiny screen. If this offers a cheap marketplace for console-style games, I think it's great.

But those games are cheap because the vast majority are just for killing time (like doodle jump or angry birds) - how many of them are the sort of game that you would sit down and actually play, i really can't think of many. Maybe Minecraft and Limbo - but then again they're on PC and xbox anyway.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (5, Interesting)

jxander (2605655) | about a year ago | (#42802093)

While I agree that Ouya probably won't set the gaming world on fire, it does have a few major benefits over the existing consoles : Price and release date

The current generation XBox and PS debuted in the $300 - 600 range. Rumors have the next gen starting around $400. Meanwhile, neither of those two have a set release date. Sony has a press conference in a few weeks, and XBox is said to be targeting a holiday release schedule. Given those two factors, the only real competition for the Ouya is the WiiU. Of the two, Ouya is still cheaper and won't be as gimmicky as Nintendo's consoles.

The only wild card here is the Steambox. But that, too, has no set price or release date... and it'll mostly be banking on people who have Steam libraries already setup, and just want to play in their living room

If nothing else, Ouya will be a nice toy to tinker with... their intent to keep it 100% mod friendly certainly sets it apart from the other players.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

GrBear (63712) | about a year ago | (#42802389)

the only real competition for the Ouya is the WiiU

I certainly hope you were being humorous. The Ouya is little more than a toy, if anything it will appear in the checkout lines of Best Buy next to the other electronic 'toys'. Have you even looked at the specs for the Ouya compared to even last generation consoles (xbox, ps2)?

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (3, Insightful)

jxander (2605655) | about a year ago | (#42802697)

But the Ouya isn't trying to compete with PS and XBox. That's the point I'm trying to make. It's priced significantly lower than the *current* price for the nearly-decade-old XBox 360 and PS3.

Seriously [amazon.com]... and that's the 4gb model ... half the storage capacity of a Ouya, without the USB Stick expandability. Maybe being in a different market will relegate it to the "checkout line of best buy," but I kinda doubt it.

BTW, I have checked out the specs, and Ouya is roughly on par with the "base" level Wii U, while being 1/3 the price.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (3, Insightful)

RazorSharp (1418697) | about a year ago | (#42803315)

The Ouya is little more than a toy

Are you implying that other game consoles are not toys?

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | about a year ago | (#42802485)

For your second factor, you are aware that the sales life of a console is supposed to be longer than 6 months?

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (1)

oGMo (379) | about a year ago | (#42802561)

Even compared to the Wii U, this is still a toy. The hardware is 2+ generations old, and is easily outclassed by current-generation phones and other devices. This already looked pretty iffy when they announced it, and this year it's just bad. You can be pretty sure Nintendo and other developers will be putting out games for the WiiU for at least 3-5 years; where will Ouya be even next year?

Even now, 6+ years after its release, I can pick up amazing new AAA games for the PS3 and 360. I'm in the middle of Ni No Kuni, and hoping to finish that fast enough to keep up with other releases. Halo 4 hit the 360 not that long ago. The consoles may have cost $500+ on release, but over 5-6 years, the libraries are pretty stocked. At $100 a year, that's not terrible, because with the Ouya, you're going to be wanting a new one every year. And the games aren't going to be as good.

All in all, not as great a price as it seems.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (3, Informative)

jxander (2605655) | about a year ago | (#42802833)

Even compared to the Wii U, this is still a toy.

WiiU [wikipedia.org]

CPU : 1.24 GHz Tri-Core IBM PowerPC "Espresso"
GPU : AMD Radeon "Latte" @ 550 MHz.
Storage : 8GB / 32GB (depending on model)
RAM : 2 GB total (4x 512 MB DDR3-1600) 1GB reserved for OS.

Ouya [wikipedia.org]

SoC: Nvidia Tegra 3 (T33)
CPU : 1.7 GHz Quad-Core ARM Cortex-A9
Storage : 8GB
RAM : 1GB

Look roughly in the same ballpark to me. If you want to benchmark the WiiU's tri-core Power processor vs Ouya's quad-core ARM ... or if you have an Ouya, I'd be happy to learn what kind of overhead the OS takes... but to call the Ouya 2+ generations behind is simply incorrect

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42803091)

In reference to this: The GPU on the WiiU is 3 generations behind as well. According to wikipedia it's an RV770, which AFAIK was the predecessor to the RV740 (Radeon 4770, the first 45NM GPU produced, 128 bit GDDR5 memory bus as opposed to the RV770's 256 bit bus). Additionally that particular part is so old it only PARTIALLY supports OpenCL 1.0, and had driver support removed by ATI in the Catalyst 12.6/12.8 releases.

IE Nintendo just put out a console based around a graphics chip the manufacturer isn't even officially supporting anymore!

The tegra 3 on the other hand will probably still recieve driver updates for at least another few years (based on Nvidia's track record) and combined with nouveau's work on it will have open source drivers available with the majority of features functional before support ends.

But that just might be my take on it.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (2)

Kethinov (636034) | about a year ago | (#42802227)

With the PS4 and the next Xbox coming out this year as well as the various Steam Boxes and the next round of high end GPUs for PC about to drop, the Ouya's brief appeal seems even less relevant.

Since none of those are open platforms, I think Ouya's appeal will remain quite relevant.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (3, Insightful)

Moses48 (1849872) | about a year ago | (#42802287)

I pre-ordered my OUYA. I was torn between an OUYA and Ras-Pi with controller support. I decided to go with the OUYA for something quick and easy to get running, and faster mod time if I want to mod it. I want a system I can play my custom nes/snes/genises/n64 roms. oh, and I watch netflix. I also like creating my own interface for some of my media. So that leaves me with a few options: modded xbox/ps3, htpc, RasPi (modding for controllers), or OUYA. The htpc option is too expensive. The modded-ps3 is pretty good as it doubles up as a blue-ray player, but it's expensive. The modded-xbox is pretty weak (technically), but is x86 which gives me more support for my old pc games and better emulators, but not sure it can handle n64 emulator. The RasPi is fun to tinker with, I would do this if it wasn't on back-order. The OUYA comes good to go and i just have to root it and put my android emulators on it. It supports both xbox and playstation controllers. For me, it makes sense. (Although at $50/controller I would definitely prefer to buy a ps3 dualshock controller, I pre-ordered when the controller was $30)

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802305)

Every console system made has been reduced to conversation value or less in 15 years. Oh, sure, there's the retro market, but that's miniscule compared to the main market. The next sentence is what people said about the original Wii.

There's a lot of people that don't have a lot of money these days, and if they can get games for $10 on one system, but they cost $60 each on the other, that makes a huge difference. Kids might want the PS4, but if all the parent can afford is the OUYA, that's what they'll get. Even if they can afford a PS4, it'll look pretty attractive. If the PS4/XBOX720 comes out at $300 (probably higher), you can either get a console with one controller and one game, or, for about the same price, the OUYA with a two controllers and 21 games. If the kids want another game, it's not something that needs to be budgeted. This is a huge difference.

As for adults, well, 85,000 bought one and it hasn't even been made yet. We'll have to wait until it's actually built before you have any reason to call it a piece of junk that won't sell.

As for comment spam, who cares? It's irrelevant. And also rides on the assumption that this will be both be successful and remain in peoples minds, in which case they should be asking to port games to OUYA, and simultaneously not successful to where this would be annoying, in which case it will be forgotten and the comment apocalypse will be averted.

Kudos to you if you didn't understand the financial aspect, you're doing pretty well for yourself. A lot of us aren't, and yes, $60 needs to be budgeted. Sometimes $10 does.

Re:Ouya was more relevant, before. (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about a year ago | (#42802383)

Worse, the whole "we will support Ouya" thing became a plague on every single game related kickstarter afterward.

Not really Ouya's fault, and doesn't really change anything about the finished product though.

Console gaming dead? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42801731)

They've been hearing that console gaming is dead? It it backwards day already?

Re:Console gaming dead? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42801949)

i guess maybe because of the rise of mobile gaming? i think there's room for both, though. playing video games in your living room on a big display isn't going away any time soon. perhaps how the content is delivered will change, but not yet, and ouya isn't changing that anyway.

regardless, i'm mildly optimistic about the ouya. if it has even a couple of good games that work well on a console, it's worth the $100 to me.

Micro-studios (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802459)

playing video games in your living room on a big display isn't going away any time soon. perhaps how the content is delivered will change, but not yet

The push to market Steam boxes for set-top use as opposed to desktop use is likely to help it change.

and ouya isn't changing that anyway

If anything, Ouya will change it in a way beneficial to micro-studios [wikipedia.org]. I imagine that getting games into the Ouya Store will be more like getting games into Google Play Store, or into Xbox Live Indie Games or Apple's App Store at worst, as opposed to the far more involved and far more expensive process of becoming an authorized developer for games for Nintendo consoles.

(Cue the claims that all games from micro-studios are falling block clones or crap reminiscent of the 1983-1984 Atari 2600 crash.)

Re:Console gaming dead? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802435)

Near the start of the console cycle - PC gaming is dying.
Near the end of console cycle - console gaming is dying.

Yes, new innovative intellectual property! (1)

Dahamma (304068) | about a year ago | (#42801817)

I've been waiting for years for someone to release truly innovative titles like "2D Cube Zombie Platformer" and "Bowling Pro"...

I don't know... (3, Funny)

Dahamma (304068) | about a year ago | (#42801865)

Their console design looks a little retro to me.

http://www.ouya.tv/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/photo-1-e1359051832288.jpg [www.ouya.tv]

Re:I don't know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802015)

Might be a good strategy. Around here I've noticed the CD shops have expanded to over 50% vinyl.

Re:I don't know... (1)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about a year ago | (#42802337)

OhYA, vector gaming! Lets game like its 1979!!!

Re:I don't know... (1)

Dahamma (304068) | about a year ago | (#42802465)

I don't know, I have painful memories of playing it in college. If I remember correctly, it was a basic platform side scroller, but it took me forever to acquire the Vertical and Horizontal Positions and get to the Trigger Level.

I give it 3 months (1, Insightful)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | about a year ago | (#42802013)

Then no one will remember it existed

Sounds about right (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | about a year ago | (#42802941)

I can't see how this is supposed to be useful. I guess if you really want to play smartphone-type games on your TV this is a way to go since it is much easier to hook up to a TV and controllers than most smartphones. However I can't see why else you'd want it. I already have an Android phone, why do I want an android console that is by all accounts less powerful than my phone?

Geeks love the concept because it is "cheap and open" but that really isn't going to do much in the long run. I think the appeal will wear off, and people will set aside for their existing game consoles and phones.

OUYA = Oh Ya (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802055)

As in:
Oh Ya, I remember that now
Oh Ya, is that still a thing?
Oh Ya, two-year-old mobile hardware was pretty slow wasn't it?
Oh Ya, my WiiU controller is half the cost of my console too
Oh Ya, android has games
Oh Ya, i'm saving up for a real console later this year

Re:OUYA = Oh Ya (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802327)

How about "Oh Ya, there will be cheap or even free games on this that probably couldn't be made for a Sony or Nintendo console"?

What's up with the lack of start/select button? (3, Interesting)

grumbel (592662) | about a year ago | (#42802063)

Does anybody know why they left away the start/select button? Those seems rather fundamental to a whole lot of modern game designs and not having them will probably be a rather big annoyance. Do they have anything planed for the GUI that will address this issue?

Re:What's up with the lack of start/select button? (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802467)

I'm guessing that games that don't use the trackpad will map the whole trackpad to Start.

no thanks, too little for too much (3, Insightful)

frovingslosh (582462) | about a year ago | (#42802071)

I know if I saw anything unfavorable about kickstarter I'll get modded down no matter what merit it has, but I sure can't get excited about this. There are extremely hot Android tablets for $200 with their own high resolution screens. Take out the GPS, the NFC, the bluetooth, and other features and you can build a decent tablet for a hundred bucks complete with a screen and HDMI out. Why should I spend that amount for an Android device without a screen that can only be used for a limited subset of games when I should be able to buy a tablet that can do so much more?

Re:no thanks, too little for too much (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year ago | (#42802341)

Why should I spend that amount for an Android device without a screen that can only be used for a limited subset of games when I should be able to buy a tablet that can do so much more?

Because it costs $100, not $200. Oh, and it has buttons, joysticks, and a touchpad - things you won't find on a tablet.

tegra 4 would have been great (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802077)

Wish they had delayed this by a few months and launched with a tegra 4 chip and increased the price by $10 as i'm sure nvidia would charge more for tegra 4.

Tegra 3 = quad cortex a9 and a poor gpu not supporting modern opengl and opengl es
tegra 4 = quad cortex a15 and a gpu that is 3-6x faster and is supports modern versions of opengl and opengl es.

A tegra 4 box would have been great for a htpc, usb3 and lots of other goodies, shame.

There was rumours of a ouya 2 according to a newspaper, one of those would be nice with tegra 4 or 5.

Can't believe they are charging $50 for a 2nd controller. the xbox 360 controller only costs around $35.

no fair price for you (0)

frovingslosh (582462) | about a year ago | (#42802251)

When you have a bunch of chumps who financed your company for you, it is easy to get greedy and charge them high prices for the essential extras like the second controller. A decent user friendly design might have offered compatibility with one or even several existing console controllers, but I would not expect anyone who wants to get rich on the contributions of others to do that.

Next year at this time you'll be able to get the controllers cheap from many of the close-out sellers. However you will not want them.

Other console controller as option or requirement? (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802707)

A decent user friendly design might have offered compatibility with one or even several existing console controllers, but I would not expect anyone who wants to get rich on the contributions of others to do that.

Did you mean as an option or as a requirement? If as a requirement, that would require each developer to buy an Xbox 360 controller, a Sixaxis controller, and a Wii Remote so that the game can be play-tested and balanced on all three of them, no matter which console a given player already owns. If as an option, what makes you think it'll be impossible for an individual game to support other controllers as an option?

This monkey has only six axis (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802345)

Can't believe they are charging $50 for a 2nd controller. the xbox 360 controller only costs around $35.

Is that the wired or wireless controller? And is that proprietary RF or standard Bluetooth? The SIXAXIS controller cost $50 new.

Is it me or.... (2)

Orleron (835910) | about a year ago | (#42802089)

do most of those game trailers from TFA look pretty bad?

Re:Is it me or.... (0)

citizenr (871508) | about a year ago | (#42802263)

Considering they have to work with Riva TNT2 "performance" they look ok'ish. Think year 1999 Unreal Tournament in 800x600.
Ok for a quick break on a train, useless as an entertainment system in the house.

Re:Is it me or.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42803053)

do most of those game trailers from TFA look pretty bad?

The games were all made in only 10 days...

166 entries? (1)

Kwyj1b0 (2757125) | about a year ago | (#42802159)

From the summary, I thought this device would support android games. If that is the case, why are their only 166 entries? Do Android games need to be ported to make use of the controller?

I also wonder if any big-named titles are coming to it. Without that, I believe this console is dead in the water. Most people who do console gaming want big famous titles (like Halo/Zelda/FIFA/CoD).

Angry birds on a console wouldn't (IMO) do much good. I doubt anyone would play angry birds on a PC/Console. Part of the appeal with games for phones is that the games are quick, easy to play, and relatively straightforward. Some console/PC games transition well to phones (e.g. Team 17's Worms), but I don't think that holds for the majority of games. Most console gamers (whom I know - including me) prefer games with greater complexity in gameplay (even if it is just shooting things).

Re:166 entries? (0)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about a year ago | (#42802325)

Yes, bingo. Most Android games are designed for touch, without game controller support. So you only get 166 titles that support the OUYA. While the OUYA supports the Android platform, it DOESN'T support the content already out there. That's the scam. This system is at the mercy of people that will bother to support the OUYA, not a system that just magically works with all Android content.

Re:166 entries? (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802515)

This system is at the mercy of people that will bother to support the OUYA

Which includes anybody who has published an Android game that supports the iControlPad, iCade, Archos GamePad, or Sixaxis Controller, and wants some relatively easy money.

Re:166 entries? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802719)

I'm more of a CynicalPessimist about the software support. It sounds like most people are excited turning their Ouya into a media box or an old console emulator. (There's also people who are planning to pirate games someone else is supposed to buy.)

My guess is that everyone plays around with theirs for a few weeks and then forgets about it.

Re:166 entries? (1)

nightfury (2826503) | about a year ago | (#42802403)

Angry birds on a console wouldn't (IMO) do much good. I doubt anyone would play angry birds on a PC/Console.

Yep... nobody does that. [lmgtfy.com]

Re:166 entries? (1)

Kwyj1b0 (2757125) | about a year ago | (#42802455)

Angry birds on a console wouldn't (IMO) do much good. I doubt anyone would play angry birds on a PC/Console.

Yep... nobody does that. [lmgtfy.com]

While I did say "nobody" in my original post, I didn't mean it literally. For that matter, cut the rope is on the Windows 8 store (and I'm sure it is on other platforms). My second point addressed this issue: I don't think Angry birds for Xbox would make anyone thinking of buying a console choose that platform instead of a PS3. They choose Xbox for Halo. When you want people to buy a console, they look for big-name titles. And Angry birds lacks the complexity that makes game play on a console fun (compare it to GTA or any other major title).

"why are THEIR"... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802875)

LOL. American idiot. I'm right, aren't I?

Stop overrating this please (1, Insightful)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about a year ago | (#42802299)

I recently got a Nexus 10 and having spent hours on the Android marketplace looking for some half-decent game that is not Angry Birds, I came up far short. Sure you get something that plugs Android into your TV, then what. Hope the games come while you struggle to play Angry Birds on a platform it was not intended for?

The complete dearth of quality game content kind of suggests that for a good long time OUYA will not be as revolutionary as everyone thinks. Not to mention that what games are there are intended for touch screens, not game controller play. I'd expect a LONG list of content "not supported by your device" coming up on OUYA.

I think Google Play is getting better, but its still a far cry from the robust platform of quality games found on iDevices AND Android games are a far cry from the content you are going to see on the current or next generation of platforms. OUYA might encourage more game development, but again, will it drive up higher amounts of quality titles, I doubt it.

This project was over-hyped from the beginning and I think this is just plain ol' highway robbery for all the KickStarter supporters.

Re:Stop overrating this please (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802477)

Just because you personally can't find something of interest to waste time on, you feel the rest of the world is as bitter as you? This console is to allow a different gaming model of free to play (crap) on the biggest selling OS on the planet. Many people will buy this, it is not intended to compete with real consoles, but it will probably take a large chunk out of their market.

Re:Stop overrating this please (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802823)

Many people will buy this, it is not intended to compete with real consoles, but it will probably take a large chunk out of their market.

Uh, right.

The people willing to blow $400 on an XBox720 and Halo 5 are really going to gasp in awe and instead buy an Ouya.

At a very delusional best, gamers might buy this - if only for the novelty factor - in addition to actual consoles.

iControlPad games, for one (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802567)

Not to mention that what games are there are intended for touch screens, not game controller play.

Every game has to support the touch screen, even if only to drop a virtual gamepad [pineight.com] onto the screen. But a lot of games already support the iControlPad, iCade, Sixaxis Controller, Xperia Play, or a slide-out physical keyboard, and could be easily ported.

If it has NES, SNES, etc emulators, then maybe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802401)

If it has a way to play the old NES and SNES roms, it may be kind of fun (but not worth $50 for a second controller). But other than that, I cannot see a great deal of purpose for it.

Legality difference between NES and SNES (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#42802787)

If it has a way to play the old NES and SNES roms, it may be kind of fun

Every Ouya console can be converted to the devkit. I imagine that one can sideload an Android NES or Super NES emulator. But the reason these emulators probably won't find their way into the Ouya Store is the same reason that Fedora doesn't include emulators: the company doesn't want to incur secondary liability by "inducing" copyright infringement (MGM v. Grokster). One can make probably-noninfringing (under US law, 17 USC 117(a)) copies of a Sega Genesis or Super NES cartridge by buying a Retrode cart reader [retrode.com], and adapters for Nintendo 64, Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, and Sega Master System cartridges are coming soon. But how would one do so for NES games? The most widely used NES dumping device, the CopyNES, has to be soldered into an authentic NES console, and I imagine that most users aren't willing to do that.

Wow, this thing is really happening! (1)

Optic7 (688717) | about a year ago | (#42802517)

Looks like they're snagging some pretty heavyweight retailers. I will probably buy this pretty early on, as I really like the concept, or perhaps even pre-order. I just need to learn some more details about it. Good luck to the platform and to the game developers!

Over-engineered? (1)

jj00 (599158) | about a year ago | (#42802609)

I'm excited about it in that I'd like to see a device I can play around with. The entry cost is fairly low. My concern is the amount of effort they seem to be putting into the design, or want you to believe they are putting into the design. Seems like they could have saved a lot of money by squeezing that motherboard into square-ish OEM Roku box and used some standard usb gamepads. I'd also like to see it act just like another other Android device - meaning I could install stuff from the Play store, etc.

OUYA: Free To Play PITA. (5, Interesting)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#42802807)

IMO, everyone misses the biggest deal with the OUYA: Its payment API stinks.

In the OUYA developer API: All programs must be down-loadable for free. There's no option to charge for the game first. There's no option to have a free version and a paid version -- It's got to be an in-app purchase if you want that, it's more complex and harder to get right, esp. from a security standpoint, esp. when trying NOT to annoy your customers. The payment API has re-occurring subscription payments, it has replenish-able items that can be bought multiple times (think Zynga Energy Bars, or game currency), and it has one time purchasable items (like unlockables). This means I just say NO to OUYA.

This means developers who just want to sell you the whole game once and you have it and that's it, really only have one option: Game Demo -> Try Out -> Purchase Rest of Game -> Wait for it to download the rest of the game. Otherwise, OUYA games really will be the most hackable: Download full game -> It's got locked features -> Run the keygen / crack. -> You've got the full game -- I wonder what the Venn diagram looks like for people to which a $100 console price point is compelling vs people who've ever ran a game keygen / crack... I bet it it looks pretty much like a single circle.

I've done research on the try-before-you buy "game demo" method in my own apps. What happens is that players impulsively download the games. Some forget about them, then delete them without ever playing the games. Most play the game first, feel their curiosity is mostly satisfied, then they forget about it and delete it later. A rare few will download the game, play the demo, then after that impulse has passed, return to the game and buy the "next episode" or "full game".

So folks like me who actually love making and playing games, and have no interest in being nickel and dimed to death or doing so to our customers see the OUYA as a non-starter. Less Choice Is Bad. OUYA gives devs LESS CHOICE about how to sell their game, they're betting big on the Free to Play (read: Pay to Win) model that I will never buy into. There's some controversy over whether or not game demos actually hurt sales [slashdot.org], so IMO it's foolish to leave no option other than to have game demos, or free to play. Additionally, I've done all the research I need. I've seen our sales numbers much lower for apps released with trials vs those without trials. A better method is to not do trials and simply reduce price slowly until you discover the impulse buy amount.

The OUYA dev platform didn't have all the payment and registration services even working to test games against when I checked a couple of weeks ago. As a developer: Screw OUYA. I'll release some of my 100% free games there if I remember. This console has "cheap" selling point that targets people opposite to the ones that will actually buy the games. The folks that have disposable income are the ones who unlock the full game after playing the demo. They're the ones that spend $60 on "energy" to get some in-game artificial delay, rather than the poorer sap who'll grind away tons of time to achieve the same. Protip: these non-in-game purchasing grinders are the bigger fans; The grinders will buy the next game, or nearly anything new you ever make -- esp. if it's not free-to play.

I'm not seeing WHY people will buy the OUYA (other than all the damn hype). Having a portable game system (smartphone / tablet) that can optionally hook up to the TV and use wireless gamepads, or having a portable game system / tablet and also spending an additional $100 non portable OUYA that you must hook up to your TV, uses a gamepad, and doesn't run all the games your smartphone / tablet will. Folks are not going to say: OUYA! Great! Now I don't need a SmartPhone! No, they'll buy those, and then see the OUYA and think either: "I've got disposable income, so I'll buy it", or "I can do everything it does on the devices I already have."

Look, I'm a huge advocate of the shareware model, but allowing a refund period is almost equivalent: try-before-you-buy ~~ buy-try-nope-refund -- Except with the latter you retain more impulse buys with no risk to those who may hate it. Shareware is VERY hard to get right with game demos. You have to make such a small teaser demo that the players don't experience the meat of the game so they don't feel satisfied with what they got so far and maintain interest, while also contending with the fact that if you don't give the players enough mechanics to experience then they'll be disappointed and less inclined to buy the game. Know what works? Videos of Gameplay. Those can show off the actual mechanics and all sorts of awesomeness, and drive excitement and impulse purchases. Not: Wait for Download. 60 seconds of play time then: "Do you want to pay to wait for another download?" You don't have to be a brain scientist to understand why that leads to less sales. "Nope, I'm gonna do something else first, and if I remember about it, I might come back and re download the rest of the ga-- OOH! Look at this other Demo! It's so cool!"

Re:OUYA: Free To Play PITA. (1)

musikit (716987) | about a year ago | (#42802929)

totally agree. as a user i dont download apps anymore that have IAP. i can't tell or dont want to tell the difference between full game unlock and nickel and diming me to death. so i check IAP is there... no buy. i don't care if i dont need to use it to beat the game. its there i dont download i dont buy.

as a developer who uses unity, there API sucks ass. i need to do 10 or more C#->Java "native" calls in order to get the entire joypad information. umm switching languages is like slow dude. no thanks.

i wish them all the success. but it does seem that this is an alpha product.

" will reach retail availability in June" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802817)

What's that in English?

Nothing "reaches availability", this is just another example of a cretin who can't think of the correct English, making up bullshit as they go along.

Backed down from initial vision (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42802819)

I watched the kickstarter video and they promised that all games would be "free-to-play". That'd be great for children and poor students who have plenty of time to grind but no money to purchase. I see that they pulled back that promise and turned it into "free-to-try", meaning that every game should have a crippled demo you can try before you buy. Just like all the other consoles. So much for revolutions. I guess getting $7M from the kickstarter made them forget revolutions and to look forward for the next opportunity to squeeze money..

Other than that, yet-another android platform. There's a remote possibility that nvidia could produce working complete-linux drivers, so ouya could be used for general purpose stuff. For a demo of this, refer to Ubuntu on Nexus 7.

Sold (2)

Mike Frett (2811077) | about a year ago | (#42802895)

I didn't do the Kickstarter deal, I was reluctant but it's OK. Me and my brother will be buying one, I don't know why he is buying one but I am buying one specifically as a kick-to-the-face to Sony and Microsoft. I don't support their 'I'm a DRM'ed PC pretending to be a Console' Ideas. I've said this twice before, but my brother owns a soon to be outdated 360 whom is tired of the "Nickel and Dime me to death" game that Microsoft plays.

If they can get Netflix, Hulu, XBMC and etc... (2)

future assassin (639396) | about a year ago | (#42802983)

on and its not a slug fest like my WD Tv Live's they could potentially corner the media player market also. I just spend $1000 on building two HTPC's and one requirement was to play video games. If this can do it at $150 I and everyone I know will have 5 of them in their house.

Lack of vision on the part of detractors so far (3, Insightful)

Optic7 (688717) | about a year ago | (#42803195)

I have to say that I'm kind of amazed by the lack of vision on the part of so many posters here so far. Most of the complaints that I've read so far are either petty or short-sighted. I think this thing will take off pretty well.

What is there not to like about it?

Price: one third the price of other consoles. About the price of a top Roku model or Apple TV. If this thing takes off I can actually see it eclipsing Google TV in the media apps arena too. If the games are in the $1-$10 like some people predict, that will also be a bonus.

Openness: more open than any other consoles.

Ease of developing and releasing for it: great - Android, no expensive licenses or development platforms, etc.

Ease of use and buying games: great - looks like it will be well-designed. All games have some free element to them so you can try them first. All games are downloaded. Not having to go to a store or wait for shipping, combined with the anticipated price of the games should make for lots of game sales.

Power: fine. It will do 1080p. Sure, you won't be playing the latest Crysis or whatever on it, but look at where the money is going in gaming nowadays - casual games and mobile games. Imagine some of the better casual and mobile games running in 1080p and this thing will kill, especially if the price of the games is in the $1-$10 range.

Internet buzz: pretty strong. I keep reading about this thing constantly. If you're into games, you've heard about this.

The only ways I can think of this thing failing is if there's some major flaw with the hardware or software, or if patent trolls gang up on it and kill it, or if the game prices get inflated to significantly over $20.

Really, I have not yet read one single legitimate concern out of the other (early) posts so far. Sure, you can complain about the low hardware power, but for the price and the category of games they're going for, that shouldn't be an issue. It would only be an issue if they tried to run AAA FPS games, etc.

Ouya so far seems to be doing fairly well with the opportunity to coalesce the whole indie, casual, and mobile gaming markets on to one affordable device, and could build a significant library of games pretty quickly.

So again, what is there not to like about it?

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