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OUYA Console Starts Shipping To Kickstarter Backers 110

Posted by timothy
from the next-they'll-want-to-borrow-a-cup-of-sugar dept.
First time accepted submitter Patch86 writes "The team behind the Android-based OUYA games console have announced last week that they have begun shipping their first consoles. As the console originated as a Kickstarter project the first consoles will be shipped to backers; the console is due to be released for general sale for the 4th of June with a $99 price tag. As the BBC notes, this is the first of a series of major new entrants into the games console market, with others on the horizon including fellow Kickstarter Android project Gamestick, Nvidia's CES surprise Project Shield, and of course Valve's 'Steambox.'"
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OUYA Console Starts Shipping To Kickstarter Backers

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  • now I have to look at angry birds on the TV as if it wasn't enough everywhere else! :OP
  • by raydobbs (99133) on Thursday April 04, 2013 @05:15PM (#43362715) Homepage Journal

    I've heard people mention that the Ouya won't really be all that - but I disagree. For the first time in a while, we have a console designed for the tinkerer and independent developer in mind, and it should be interesting to see what it brings to the table. Sure, when it launches, it won't be all that exciting - but given the resources available to Android developers of late, there is a lot of potential.

    Of course, potential and five bucks gets you a coffee at Starbucks - but perhaps the Big Three need to feel the nipping of an indie console at their heels to get their butts in gear on new genres, new stories, and fresh ideas.

    • by Antipater (2053064) on Thursday April 04, 2013 @05:23PM (#43362807)

      fresh ideas.

      We could give Mario a new hat!

    • by tlhIngan (30335) <(ten.frow) (ta) (todhsals)> on Thursday April 04, 2013 @06:09PM (#43363359)

      I've heard people mention that the Ouya won't really be all that - but I disagree. For the first time in a while, we have a console designed for the tinkerer and independent developer in mind, and it should be interesting to see what it brings to the table. Sure, when it launches, it won't be all that exciting - but given the resources available to Android developers of late, there is a lot of potential.

      Of course, potential and five bucks gets you a coffee at Starbucks - but perhaps the Big Three need to feel the nipping of an indie console at their heels to get their butts in gear on new genres, new stories, and fresh ideas.

      While that's the ideal situation, I'm thinking a good chunk of Ouyas will probably just end up running emulators like MAME and such. After all, instead of playing on a PC or using touch controls, you now have a real controller and can play pac-man on your big screen.

      Because really, what's the usual thing modded consoles run by homebrewers? Emulators.

      • by tepples (727027)

        After all, instead of playing on a PC or using touch controls, you now have a real controller and can play pac-man on your big screen.

        Couldn't you already do that with a USB gamepad and a TV with VGA or HDMI in?

        • by bedouin (248624)

          Sure if you don't mind a big noisy box sitting on the floor that still needs a mouse and keyboard, and the associated loading times and security updates that go along with it . . .

          • Sure if you don't mind a big noisy box sitting on the floor

            "Big"? They make PCs in smaller cases now. For example, I own an Acer that's not noticeably bigger than a launch Xbox 360. A Mac mini is about the size of a Wii. "Noisy"? How would a PC necessarily be any more noisy than a launch PS3 or launch Xbox 360?

            that still needs a mouse and keyboard

            I thought that's exactly what Steam Big Picture and controller-friendly games were supposed to fix.

            and the associated loading times

            I was under the impression that PC loading times tended to be even faster than console loading times after the first play because games are installed completely

      • by exomondo (1725132)

        While that's the ideal situation, I'm thinking a good chunk of Ouyas will probably just end up running emulators like MAME and such

        Or an xbmc box.

    • by aliquis (678370)

      So where's the new genres and ideas in the indie market?

      • by gagol (583737)
        Look into armorgames.com, there is plenty. They are not good, but many are quite innovative.
  • Curious (Score:4, Insightful)

    by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@nOspAM.gmail.com> on Thursday April 04, 2013 @05:23PM (#43362815) Journal
    How very strange that Slashdot ran an article nine months ago titled Why We Should Remain Skeptical of the Ouya Android Console [slashdot.org] that read:

    We recently talked about the 'Ouya' console — a conceptual Android-based gaming device that's had a massively successful Kickstarter campaign. While most people are excited about such a non-traditional console, editorials at 1Up and Eurogamer have expressed some more realistic skepticism about the claims being made and the company's ability to meet those claims.

    Sooooooo ... when do we own up to spreading FUD about this Kickstarter campaign? I mean, look [slashdot.org] at some [slashdot.org] of the highest rated comments.

    Well, I'm glad I got on board. Also glad I got in on the RFduino early on! I'll let you know how it handles when I get my hands on it ;)

    • by yurtinus (1590157)
      I don't have my Ouya yet, do you??? It's all a scam!! No, I didn't back it... what's your point?

      In all seriousness, I wonder if their games library will be available for generic Android devices. When it comes down to it, the games library will make or break this thing. I don't play enough to justify buying one, but I'm definitely rooting for them from the sidelines.
      • In all seriousness, I wonder if their games library will be available for generic Android devices. When it comes down to it, the games library will make or break this thing. I don't play enough to justify buying one, but I'm definitely rooting for them from the sidelines.

        Well, this exists [wikipedia.org] and according to this kickstarter post [kickstarter.com]:

        As of 7:59 p.m. PT, there are already 104 published games on OUYA (all still free to try), like Final Fantasy III and some new surprises we think you’ll love: Beast Boxing Turbo, Stalagflight, Knightmare Tower, and even one called Save the Puppies. There are already a few entertainment apps, too. You can watch the TV shows and movies you already own with XBMC and Flixster, or watch games streamed through TwitchTV.

        Man, I remember doing so much crap on my Dreamcast -- years after it failed. I hope this console is like a Dreamcast with the original intent of being open to homebrew and messing around!

        • by drinkypoo (153816)

          If they get Amazon Instant Video support, I'll likely buy one.

          If not, well, I already have an HTPC. And I can play games on it, too. But I don't.

      • by MrDoh! (71235)
        I suspect that Google will relaunch the NexusQ as more of a gaming device and media, with better controller support built into the OS (soft gamepads similar to how the soft keyboards work, show up if you don't have the hardware, use the bluetooth/ir/wireless/wired devices if they are found). Many of the games appear to be written knowing a controller exists,GoogleTV missed on on a trick to be a games machine as well.
    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by DerekLyons (302214)

      Sooooooo ... when do we own up to spreading FUD about this Kickstarter campaign?

      Did you actually note the date of the article you linked too? (I know you typed it out, that doesn't mean you stopped to think about it.) It was nine months ago - and things do change over time. You also seem to have failed to note that the article is about the functionality of the device - something largely currently unknown *as it has just started shipping*.

      Your comment should have been moderated "-1 Fanboy".

      • No shit (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Thursday April 04, 2013 @11:48PM (#43365605)

        The concerns I've Oyua have not been of non-delivery, well other than the Kickstarter haters that claim everything on there is a scam. The concerns I've seen are over functionality. Will it really go anywhere? Will anyone care? Many fanboys just seem to take it for granted that when it comes out, tons of stuff will get released for it and everyone will want one. I'm more skeptical. I think it'll be a toy that the backers and a few others play with for a bit, and then it gets set aside. I don't think it will compete well with smartphones and traditional consoles.

        I've seen no plans for how they intend to attract big game publishers and that is what you need if you want to get many games on the platform, and games is what will sustain it long term. It is all well and good to crow on about open source but when you take a look at the number of OSS games, and the quality thereof, it is not very impressive. So to sell it to the masses and keep it rolling, you need more games and I've not seen any indication of what their plan is for that. It seems to be just "Release it and everyone will make cool shit for it!"

        History is littered with failed consoles that can testify to that not being the case. Goes double for something that is smartphone level power, which will leave many people saying "So why not just use my phone?"

        The challenge was never shipping the thing. They got plenty of money so that was easy, I mean it uses off-the-shelf components internally. It is just standard electronics design, testing, and assembly. The challenge is getting it to sell on the mass market, to be an item of interest that people keep buying, and buy successors to.

        • by dave420 (699308)
          There are already 104 free-to-play games in the Oyua market, so that bit's taken care of.
          • Unless you don't have a credit card and internet connection. Both of which are required to even begin using the OUYA. Also, the controller lag is unberable. Plug it in, do a mandatory system update or the console won't work. Give 'em your credit card info or you don't get any "free" games. WTF. Nope. Do Not Want.
  • I'd like it more if these consoles rand Python based games so that hobbyists and new game makers could write them easily and get them out into the world.
  • I am not sure I would consider ANY of those devices major new entrants, maybe with the exception of steambox but it is looking increasingly likely it will be priced out of the console market. These devices all seem to be aiming at niche markets within the console market, as such I am still somewhat sceptical that any of them can succeed in a way that would have a significant impact (that is not to say they won't succeed in their niche).
    • by Svartalf (2997)

      NVidia not a major entrant? Heh...what drugs are you on and why aren't you sharing?

      • by bfandreas (603438)

        NVidia not a major entrant? Heh...what drugs are you on and why aren't you sharing?

        I have to second you on that.
        NVidia has been strongarming, bribing, consulting and cocksucking any dev who would publish on the Android plattform. In fact there is propably a direct causality between nVidia not providing chips for the next gen consoles, Shield as a tech demo popping up(which is a bit of a laugh since we have been using tablets/phones with a PS3 controller for over a year now; add in an HDMI cable...yeah, you get the picture) and Ouya having no trouble whatsoever getting a lot of Tegra3 SoC

  • Ouya Review (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    This (mostly negative) review insinuates that the Ouya is, as of now, only half-baked, but has potential:

    http://www.theverge.com/2013/4/4/4180242/ouya-review

    • Re:Ouya Review (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Mitreya (579078) <(mitreya) (at) (gmail.com)> on Thursday April 04, 2013 @06:07PM (#43363329)
      Gotta love that little gem here
      Why not just allow games to be sold normally?

      Every game is free to download, but then dumps on your head a load of nags, pop-ups, and pleas for upgrades or in-app purchases â" some games are $4.99, some are $15.99, others just constantly implore you to donate $.99 so the developer can have a beer. Worst of all, it makes buying things impossibly easy â" you enter a credit card when first setting up your Ouya, and there are often no confirmation boxes or checks against you spending thousands of dollars. Oh, you hit Upgrade because it's right next to Play and the controller's laggy? Perfect. Thanks for your money.

      • by tepples (727027)

        Why not just allow games to be sold normally?

        Make chapter 1 free to play, then nag after the player completes that. It's really not much different from a console game rental or a PC game demo.

        Oh, you hit Upgrade because it's right next to Play and the controller's laggy? Perfect. Thanks for your money.

        If accidental purchases are that easy, it'd be a problem. I seem to remember another platform with in-app purchasing requiring a password or something similar.

        • by bfandreas (603438)
          If the pricing is the same as on Google Play then in many cases they will give Steam/GoG a run for their money. I bought Puddle, Machinarium and Osmos for less on Google Play than on those other two.

          If you have a sensible phone/tablet(one that has HDMI out and Bluetooth in) then a lot of indies would propably be best purchased for Android.

          I didn't kickstart the Ouya thing but I will definitely get one for putzing around. Hell, just put XBMC on that thing and it has already earned its keep. Put DosBox on
  • With so many excellent value priced entrants to the console gaming market, the big names (Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo) should be worried. It is becoming harder and harder to justify high price points with this kind of low priced competition.

    Steam's entry seems more likely to get market share over the longer term, but all these options together make it clear that a TV-connected computer is available to run whatever you want, to any market that will pay. The financial barriers to entry are disappearing, and I t
    • by tepples (727027) <tepples@nOSpAM.gmail.com> on Thursday April 04, 2013 @06:41PM (#43363711) Homepage Journal

      The financial barriers to entry are disappearing, and I think that's wonderful.

      In a comment to the last Steam box story, CronoCloud explained to me [slashdot.org] that after the North American video game recession of 1983, console makers have traditionally used financial barriers to entry as a way to sort out original, entertaining games from the sort of me-too crap that was plaguing the Atari 2600. Ability to surmount barriers to entry has been correlated with ability to produce a game that isn't a "hello world" or a clone of some 1980s arcade game.

      • by bfandreas (603438)
        I'm not worried about the first batch of games. A lot of them will already have some sort of Google Play success.

        But since they propably don't have to jump through a lot of hoops to publish(like a couple of 10k$ to publish a patch on XBLA), a lot of devs will release inane crap. It all boils down how hard the Ouya people will watch that their rules are enforced. And even if that works out you will need some sort of review site to find good stuff. Sure as hell didn't work on Google Play.

        But then again if
        • But at least you won't know what you are missing.

          Of course people would know. "I am missing the consistent fun I had on one of the big three consoles, where the presence of my favorite franchises meant that I could just pick a game and enjoy it. Even though game demos aren't costing me any money, they are costing my time, and time is money."

          • by bfandreas (603438)

            But at least you won't know what you are missing.

            Of course people would know. "I am missing the consistent fun I had on one of the big three consoles, where the presence of my favorite franchises meant that I could just pick a game and enjoy it. Even though game demos aren't costing me any money, they are costing my time, and time is money."

            Fair enough. But franchises don't guarantee you fun either.
            A lot of games need a lot of time investment before they become truly fun. The latest specimen of that breed that I encountered was Elder Signs: Omen. I had read about it, got interested and installed it. Took me 2 hours to figure out properly. That's two hours more than I would give a demo.

            But demos is not what the Ouya is about. It's about try-before-you-buy. Their model would have mandated that I would have gotten the first campaign of Elder S

      • by Trongy (64652)
        Things have changed since the 1980s Ouya insist on the game having a free-to-play aspect which should offer consumers some protection against crap. With digital distribution it's easy to offer a wide variety of price points. Steam seem to be doing well selling low cost indie games alongside the premium titles. There's also internet reviews, forums and rating systems that can help consumers find the nuggets they are looking for.
    • Its not tho. High price points are justified by more powerful hardware. Just like the Wii didnt kill "hardcore" gaming, neither will this. I see this more as a neat device for the kids or whatnot, than an actual game console.
  • Bring it on.

    If I want a platform that has 50% FPS, then I'll go with one of the majors. I think Nintendo didn't learn the right lessons from the Wii and DS - they could've cornered niche markets of non-hardcore gamers, but failed to execute after years of visionary leadership.

    Let's see some really innovative games that torture the myth that games require bleeding edge hardware power and a hefty investment north of $500. iOS really opened up the casual market, now it's time for the console to shine again.

  • It is easy to be KS skeptic - because all these ideas are risky, people doing it for first time, underestimating risks, schedule, etc. etc. People *love* to say "I told you so", because, well, then we can say we can see the future a little bit (thus ensuring our survival a little longer).

    While not all stuff on KS (and other crowdfunding sites) makes sense to me, I personally think these are great tools to get and/or test out lot of good ideas. In age when investors look for fast buck, when "that another soc

  • I am a long time gamer and hardware/software nerd. I like the idea of a new console, but this not live long. I just dont see a market. The big three have their new consoles coming out which means the previous gen will be around $100.

    They need to come out of the gate with must have games that all the kids talk about.If they dont get some pro developers on board the oyu will die a quick death. Games sell consoles, not the other way around.
    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      I am a long time gamer and hardware/software nerd. I like the idea of a new console, but this not live long. I just dont see a market. The big three have their new consoles coming out which means the previous gen will be around $100.

      I don't know that the PS3 is going to hit $100 any time soon, and you have to pay monthly to get the Xbox to do the same stuff Ouya does included in the $100 price, so there are still several good reasons to buy an Ouya. On the other hand, there's a couple months yet before the general release, and then probably some time before I can actually buy one without backordering, and something else could be announced before then.

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