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Ouya: Android Gaming Console in Development, Priced at $99

An Android-based video gaming console known as Ouya is on the way to conquer a different kind of market. While there is limited information about the device for now, reports say that it will be targeted for game developers, both seasoned and homebrew. It is said to feature flexibility that could never be found in other consoles knowing it is built to be “hackable,” according to The Verge which first published the story.

The people behind the development of this console is stressing out that the focus of this project is free gaming. Releasing a cheaper gaming console would give developers a platform to come up with games they can offer for free or for a cheaper price. The fact that it is based on Android already exposes developers to millions of possible subscribers.

Yves Behar is the designer who built this console to look like One Laptop Per Child computer. To make things a little more interesting, this project is backed and supervised by people who have vast knowledge as far as  gaming is concerned; Julie Uhrman, former executive of IGN; Ed Fries, former Vice President of Microsoft’s Game Publishing; Muffi Ghadiali, familiar with the development of Kindle devices during his tenure at Lab126.

Ouya’s specs haven’t been revealed yet but since it will be based on Android, there is no chance it would sport mediocre specs. This project is still in its initial phase but it has already stirred the gaming community by stressing out it will set its focus to providing people free-to-play games. This will pose a competition with Electronic Arts, Ubisoft and Activision, obviously. To be marketed at $99.00, it is a stab to the popular cloud gaming, OnLive.

This Android-based video game console will still have a lot to prove to both seasoned and immediate gamers. With a bunch of consoles, handhelds and gaming PCs available in the market today, start-ups may find it hard to leave an impression. So this is where the price (for console and games) plays a great role in acquiring attention it needs. This is a great idea for some gamers but apparently the developer is also suggesting a cheaper platform for PlayStation, Xbox and PC gamers. But let’s see how far this goes.

[Source: The Verge]

9 Comments

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  1. What the fuck are you talking about? In what world are you living in where mobile devices are more powerful than PCs?

  2. @ritu

    I doubt that. With mobile devices built more powerful than PCs and consoles, it seems like living room entertainment would be replaced by mobile entertainment real soon.

    But I have high hopes for Ouya.

  3. I have always loved playing video games on TV in living room with friends but soon games on smartphones and tablet has become favorite and TV gaming has taken the backseat. Rage of Bahamut being the latest addiction. Hope Ouya will change the things.

  4. When Ouya is made available in the market, I would surely be one of the people to buy this. In one way or another this will pose a competition to PS3 and Xbox but not enough to affect their sales. But let’s see what this console can do once we get our hands on it.

  5. I think we still have to wait a little longer for that to happen. The developers of this console stressed more on providing new platform for homebrew game developers. Cross-overs make take longer than we expect considering the fact major game developers will not recognize this console until it has proven its worth.

  6. Basically, this project will provide just another platform for moderate gamers. While the developers or the people behind the existence of this platform want to gain a chunk of the gaming market dominated by Xbox, PS3 and PC, it’s easier said than done.

    Hardcore gamers are among the most difficult people to convince that a new console is better than the ones they are already playing on. But then again, Ouya will have to prove it’s worth the time. If it fails to do so, it will become history.

    When I was writing this story, I remembered that new little computer they called “Pi.” It is better than what everyone thinks about it just don’t compare it with the PC as it will surely lose face. The same goes with Ouya… I’m not sure if you’re agree with me on that. Thanks for reading, anyway.

  7. I’m for it. PS3 & Xbox has been charging for stuff that use to be free. Now they will feel the back-lash.

  8. This project has a good pedigree and great intentions. But I don’t know if the market they’re targeting actually exists:

    “…the developer is also suggesting a cheaper platform for PlayStation, Xbox and PC gamers.”

    I’m one of the less hardcore console gamers out there (currently playing through Xenoblade on the Wii and at the moment my girl’s playing Lego Harry Potter on the 360) but even I don’t have a lot of interest in what are usually called “free-to-play” games. That term brings to mind games with banner ads taking up a quarter of the screen, games that are designed to frustrate me into spending money to progress either by buying better equipment or skipping problem levels, and games that constantly prompt me to let them spam my friends, Facebook-style.

    I’d be happy with some lower-priced indie games — Fez and World of Goo are two of my all-time favorites. But I need a nice, vast, well-conceived 3D world to explore now and then, something which as of yet hasn’t appeared on any mobile OS. I could see myself buying one if it has more to offer than the $79 “Android on a stick” devices that have turned up in the past year, or the $99 Vizio box that can be used with OnLive if you buy a separate $50 controller.

    But most gamers I know won’t go near it without real entries in series like Call of Duty, GTA or Halo, and graphics that are on par with the 360 and PS3. They already have at least one of those, and will need a reason to buy another console. A box selling for $99 in 2012 just isn’t going to get there. They may not even be interested in the Wii U, likely to cost around $250-300 this fall. I think this is a crossover product like the Atari XE GS console, or Commodore 64GS or CD32 consoles, all consoles based on general-purpose operating systems with minimal tweaking that attempted to take on Nintendo and Sega and failed.

    PC gamers? Forget it. They’re spending a grand or more building machines that’ll play games at 4K resolution.

  9. Would be awesome to see some cross-overs for console/PC families. First thing I thought of when I saw this was Guild Wars 2 on a console! I know it seems to be aimed at indiegames but I just thought I would throw that out there. ^^

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