When gaming accessory maker Razer acquired Ouya, many Free The Games (FtG) participants were less than thrilled as the move would have adversely affected their funding. As part of FtG promotion, gaming console Ouya had offered to match the funds raised by any Android game developer on Kickstarter in exchange for exclusivity. Ouya’s new owners are offering the developers a better deal – without the exclusivity constraint.
Back in April we reported that Ouya needed to find a buyer fast due to its failure to restructure its debt repayments to an investment company called TriplePoint. This was despite receiving a $10 million investment received from the Chinese company, Alibaba. Shortly after, there were rumours that the computer and gaming accessory maker, Razer, were interesting in acquiring Ouya. Confirmation that Razer had indeed acquired Ouya was posted and then swiftly removed on the website of the investment bank, Mesa Global.
Razer’s first Android TV, the Forge TV, is now available in the Google Store. It’s selling as a gaming bundle, so you’ll get the Forge TV and the Serval gaming controller in the purchase.
It’s official, folks. Razer has acquired Ouya, the Kickstarter-funded Android console startup. It’s an interesting move from the gaming accessory maker, considering that they’re venturing out into the mobile world with things like the Forge TV, Razer Comms, and etc.
There is no hiding that OUYA has struggled since its launch in 2013. The Android-powered video game console, despite raising $8 million in a Kickstarter campaign, has struggled to be a hit with consumers and the company failed to repay investors that helped bring the product to life. Among the investors is Alibaba who made a $10 million investment as recent as January. Julie Uhrman, OUYA’s chief executive officer, sent an internal memo to employees in April stating that being sold is the only way to solve their problems.
OUYA could finally be acquired soon as another company in the gaming industry has been involved in negotiations.
It was only a couple of years ago that it was the darling of Kickstarter, blowing past its target goal of $950,000 with surprising ease and ending up with over eight and a half million dollars in funding. The start-up in question is Ouya, manufacturer of the Android micro gaming console, and thanks to a leaked memo from its CEO, Julie Uhrman, it would seem that the company has hit choppy waters as it now seeks a buyer.
Ouya, the game-console maker made famous by its kickstarter campaign, has recently received $10 million from online shopping titan Alibaba. There have been discussions about incorporating Ouya’s software and 1,000 game library into Alibaba’s set-top box.
The primary location where Ouya can flourish is in China, which is poised to be the next battleground for video game competition now that the 15 year-long ban on videogame consoles has been lifted. Although Ouya seemed to be off to a great start in 2012 with an explosion of funding, the results are less than expected, mostly due to the powerful hold on the market that Sony and Microsoft have and the recent emergence of the Nexus Player and Fire TV, which both allow for similar cheap gaming. However, a struggling company and a burgeoning market can be perfect for each other if there is a way for them to connect. Enter Alibaba. If there is any place that Alibaba knows, it’s China. Alibaba can be extremely helpful to Ouya as it tries to move into China’s market.
Ouya is no stranger to deals with other companies, and has also been working out some mutually beneficial agreements with Xiaomi as well.
The Ouya gaming console, or microconsole, is a device suitable for casual gamers. Some, though, find it a little limited and boring. One developer has been able to bring Google’s Android TV platform to Ouya, bringing some excitement back to the device. Not everything is operable, but that is expected to change in due time. All of the connection functions, like WiFi and Bluetooth, work. The issues arise with video and audio playback.
You can head over to the source link for directions and file downloads.
Source: XDA Developers
Ouya has launched an “all access” pass which can be purchased for $59.99, granting the user access to every game in the Ouya library for an entire year. It is, however, only being tested, so it may not be available for very long.
While the pass currently shows up as sold out, a new batch should be available soon. To check and see if you can buy the pass for yourself, simply head to the Ouya website.
Source: Droid Gamers
OUYA has announced a change to their service that will be implemented in coming weeks to let developers choose whether they want to distribute free-to-try games or just go for an up-front fee for gamers to grab a new title. In a blog post titled “It’s about CHOICE” the company says they had resisted allowing developers to offer anything other than free-to-try games. However, this appears to have been dampening enthusiasm for the platform and could be seen as not being entirely open, one of the principles the company is based on. Read more