Ouya Open Gaming Console Gets Funding--and Some Buzz
While it isn't the first inexpensive gaming console and open gaming platform to test the market, the open source Ouya gaming platform is generating buzz. A Los Angeles-based project, Ouya is billed as "a new kind of video game console" on Kickstarter, the open crowd funding online site dedicated to giving innovative ideas a chance in the market. As CNet notes, it only took about eight hours of crowdsourced funding on Kickstarter for Ouya's $950,000 startup goal to be met. Can this open, hackable game platform do as well in the actual market?
According to the folks at Ouya:
"It's time we brought back innovation, experimentation, and creativity to the big screen. Let’s make the games less expensive to make, and less expensive to buy. With all our technological advancements, shouldn't costs be going down? Gaming could be cheaper!"
"We're handing the reins over to the developer with only one condition: at least some gameplay has to be free. We borrowed the free-to-play model from games like League of Legends, Team Fortress 2, Triple Town, and many others. Developers can offer a free demo with a full-game upgrade, in-game items or powers, or ask you to subscribe."
And CNET says there are big players backing Ouya:
"There's some heavy hitters behind Ouya -- which is built on Android and plays games in HD on a TV set with Tegra3 at its heart -- including Jawbone designer Yves Behar and gaming industry veteran Julie Uhrman, not to mention backing from prominent angel investors."
While the strong backing may give Ouya a chance in the market, open source gaming is a fairly barren landscape. We covered a few notable open games here, and we covered the EVO Linux-focused console, seen at left. And, one of the most interesting Linux gaming efforts is going at Desura, which we wrote about here.
As always, Ouya's success will depend on whether developers flock to its platform. If there enough incentives, they will, but there need to be incentives. You can watch a video about the open platform here.