OUYA - Cheap, Open-Source Android Game Console

It does, however mean that they get good yields and low prices buying up chip inventory close to the end of that generation. Would I enjoy buying a new box every year? Maybe not, but the price point trumps a lot of concerns. We're 7 years in and the current generation of consoles hasn't gotten to that low a price.

Kurrelgyre wrote:

It does, however mean that they get good yields and low prices buying up chip inventory close to the end of that generation. Would I enjoy buying a new box every year? Maybe not, but the price point trumps a lot of concerns. We're 7 years in and the current generation of consoles hasn't gotten to that low a price.

It's tough to compare since its not really an Apples to Apples comparison

In some ways Android looks like the PC market - lots of different hardware and software out there to target. For the widest market, a developer has to make sure stuff runs on older devices too.

I suppose the Ouya will just be one more Android target. The Tegra 3 may be left behind in a year, but most game makers won't have the luxury of ignoring the older platforms for quite a while. So you probably won't have to upgrade to the New Ouya for some time, but you'd get better framerates and/or higher quality settings if you did.

Considering phones are on a two year replacement cycle, and the Ouya is similar to phones, I'd expect the current Ouya to be well supported for at least two years.

It would be pretty cool if The Witness made it's way to this. I wonder if Blow, or other accomplished indies, would be willing to lend their games (and thus credibility) for this.

TheGameguru wrote:

yearly refreshes though means that we probably won't ever get anything beyond your mobile quality game and/or Android Ports of iOS titles... I can't imagine any developer spending meaningful dollars on specific Ouya titles if by the time they've released its already been replaced with a new faster Ouya.

This was my first concern.
The OUYA, for all intent and purposes, is a gaming console. If Sony and Microsoft are smart enough to stay away from yearly refreshes (maybe 3 or 4 in their entire life cycle), OUYA should think about this.

There's too many differences between Sony and MS's closed garden strategy to Android's open accessibility, but yearly refreshes, even announced, can't help anyone. As Guru says, this isn't apples to apples.

A smartphone is heavily subsidized by telco's, and their life cycle is about 12 to 18 months (yes, YMMV) but a console, sitting perfectly still in your living room should last at least 3 years, even with a $99 price tag.

I just found out this doesn't have an IR port. That kind of kills my idea of as using it as a Roku replacement.

EvilDead wrote:

I just found out this doesn't have an IR port. That kind of kills my idea of as using it as a Roku replacement.

I don't use the IR port on my Rokus at all, not even sure where the remotes even are. I run the Roku app on our phones and Kindle to access all of them over our Wifi network. Works great, plus you can use keyboard input for search boxes.

And accessories are where the money is so I would bet someone gets around to an Ouya remote control if its a success.

USB IR receivers are pretty cheap. Think I spend $30 on mine and that included the $16 software package you need for Mac OS X to do cool stuff with it.

LockAndLoad wrote:
EvilDead wrote:

I just found out this doesn't have an IR port. That kind of kills my idea of as using it as a Roku replacement.

I don't use the IR port on my Rokus at all, not even sure where the remotes even are. I run the Roku app on our phones and Kindle to access all of them over our Wifi network. Works great, plus you can use keyboard input for search boxes.

And accessories are where the money is so I would bet someone gets around to an Ouya remote control if its a success.

I have used the iPhone app but don't like it because you can't control it without looking at the device. Also we have a couple Logitech Harmony remotes in the house that use IR. We have the same issue with the PS3.

Yeah, IR is a must for a proper media playback device since it's (sadly) still the standard. I simply don't want to use multiple remote control devices.

I will say that there's hope for Harmony users, even if the Ouya doesn't support IR itself (i.e. with a USB IR receiver): Logitech already makes a IR -> Bluetooth bridge device for the PS3, so it's not out of the question that they might make one for the Ouya as well.

gore wrote:

Yeah, IR is a must for a proper media playback device since it's (sadly) still the standard. I simply don't want to use multiple remote control devices.

I will say that there's hope for Harmony users, even if the Ouya doesn't support IR itself (i.e. with a USB IR receiver): Logitech already makes a IR -> Bluetooth bridge device for the PS3, so it's not out of the question that they might make one for the Ouya as well.

So long as you can find one since Logitech is killing their Harmony division

I hadn't heard that. That is very bad news as those things are life changers.

shoptroll wrote:

They're launching with a handful of Nintendo emulators that are "officially blessed", no rooting or other shenanigans allowed.

I don't think there's anything illegal with this, but this probably isn't going to end well.

(Assuming you mean no rooting required since I'm pretty sure they will allow rooting)

You can find emulators on the Google Play store already, so it doesn't seem surprising to me that Ouya would also allow them.

EDIT: double click, d'oh.

They're launching with a handful of Nintendo emulators that are "officially blessed", no rooting or other shenanigans required.

I don't think there's anything illegal with this, but this probably isn't going to end well.

gore wrote:

(Assuming you mean no rooting required since I'm pretty sure they will allow rooting)

Good catch. That's what I meant

Review units are apparently going out. The Verge gives it a 3.5/10.

It's a review of the unit before the proper launch, like reviewing the Wii U in back in September.

Yeah, while I think it's dumb to be reviewing a unit that is not v1.0 yet, it was also kind of dumb of OUYA to send final hardware out to backers first. They were kind of opening themselves up to this. As with most system launches (particularly experimental ones like this), it's going to take a few months for the dust to settle and see if it has real potential. The buzz from GDC was that there were some skeptical devs but also a lot of excited ones.

Watched the video review. 3.5 seems harsh. Or, rather, rated review for such open platform that just came out sounds pointless at best, seriously harmful at worst. if their criticisms are:

Too few games
Existing games aren't very good
Problematic, unfinished interface
Limited functionality

then I sure hope that WiiU got 3.5 at most

edit:

Kurrelgyre wrote:

It's a review of the unit before the proper launch, like reviewing the Wii U in back in September.

Beat me to it

Kurrelgyre wrote:

It's a review of the unit before the proper launch, like reviewing the Wii U in back in September.

Or like reviewing SimCity 5 before release and on a private, small server that in no way represents the actual post-release situation.

Parallax Abstraction wrote:

it was also kind of dumb of OUYA to send final hardware out to backers first.

Early access as a reward for backers is standard practice for kickstarter projects, so I disagree that it's "dumb."

I've heard of the OUYA but didn't really look at it until now. $99 for an open console sounds sweet though. I have some reading to do.

I just can't get behind this at all. Isn't this just further fragmenting an over-saturated market? I think the money would be better put toward a Gameboy or Vita. There's already so much competition for my recreation time between television, movies, magazines, console games, pc games, mobile games, etc. It's nice that it's got a controller, but it's going to suffer the same way the motion-plus did with the Wii. Devs will not port their Android games to it because the interface is so different. This is going to go the way of OnLive.

I'll let you know when I get mine soon. I was backer 864. I'm hoping for my tracking email any time now.

If all I get is a XBMC box that will also allow some game playing, I'm good.

Parallax Abstraction wrote:

Yeah, while I think it's dumb to be reviewing a unit that is not v1.0 yet, it was also kind of dumb of OUYA to send final hardware out to backers first.

If the hardware is final and being sent out to customers, it's v1.0. Period. Reviews are perfectly fine.

cube wrote:
Parallax Abstraction wrote:

Yeah, while I think it's dumb to be reviewing a unit that is not v1.0 yet, it was also kind of dumb of OUYA to send final hardware out to backers first.

If the hardware is final and being sent out to customers, it's v1.0. Period. Reviews are perfectly fine.

As I understand it, the software is not final and backers are specifically getting pre-release stuff that will be refined more before the general public can buy it. Again, OUYA should have expected reviews to come out based on that but at the same time, I think The Verge should also have mentioned that.

Also yeah, they had no problem reviewing SimCity in a specifically pre-release state and scoring it very high based on that. That they changed the score days after the fact doesn't change that.

I think that this is a product aimed at a specialised market though and those people probably aren't that interested in reviews anyway. But even if this product was good, the press as a whole has been so down on it since it was announced (curious how many who called it another Phantom will cop to that) that I wasn't expecting miracles on reviews. And I say that as someone who was initially excited about the OUYA and is now very skeptical about it.

I do find The Verge / Polygon (are they the same? Not the same? They sure look the same...) reviews to be kind of weird and inconsistent.

As a point of comparison, they gave Microsoft's clearly doomed RT Surface a 7.0/10. I know these products aren't directly comparable, but the biggest gripes against the RT Surface were the same as the Ouya (weak software selection, UI issues), and yet the Surface came out of there with a much higher score.

gore wrote:

Review units are apparently going out. The Verge gives it a 3.5/10.

I did laugh a bit at some of his complaints about the controller. Specifically, he mentions the "diamond of face buttons" we're all familiar with but then complains about the Ouya's controller having the right-most button as A and how that caused problems for him because it ran contrary to standards and expectations.

It's only the Xbox controller that has the bottom-most button as A. Nintendo's controllers have an A button, but it's been the right-most button (same as the Ouya controller) since the NES days; the SNES, DS, 3DS, Wii, and Wii U have all had the right-most button in the diamond as the A button. The PlayStation lines, both console and portable, don't have an A button; did the different placement of the Ouya's O button and the PlayStation circle button throw him off?

It just seemed like a weird complaint as it seemed to boil down to the Ouya having its own control scheme, just like every other console, where the reviewer would have preferred it to just be the Xbox one.

Parallax Abstraction wrote:

As I understand it, the software is not final and backers are specifically getting pre-release stuff that will be refined more before the general public can buy it. Again, OUYA should have expected reviews to come out based on that but at the same time, I think The Verge should also have mentioned that.

The Verge wrote:

It certainly won over our esteemed editor-in-chief, Joshua Topolsky, whose crisp Benjamin purchased the Ouya I've been playing games with all week.

Possibly, but the unit reviewed was one sent to the editor-in-chief as a backer, not a review unit sent to The Verge, nor one they obtained through retail channels post-launch. What else gets reviewed under those circumstances?

EDIT: And after realizing that Topolsky wrote the review for the Surface with Windows RT, I'm wondering why he wasn't the one to review his own Ouya.

ClockworkHouse wrote:
gore wrote:

Review units are apparently going out. The Verge gives it a 3.5/10.

I did laugh a bit at some of his complaints about the controller. Specifically, he mentions the "diamond of face buttons" we're all familiar with but then complains about the Ouya's controller having the right-most button as A and how that caused problems for him because it ran contrary to standards and expectations.

It's only the Xbox controller that has the bottom-most button as A. Nintendo's controllers have an A button, but it's been the right-most button (same as the Ouya controller) since the NES days; the SNES, DS, 3DS, Wii, and Wii U have all had the right-most button in the diamond as the A button.

A bit off-topic, but the 360 also took the button color scheme from the Dreamcast and flipped it across the vertical plane. Incidentally, the Dreamcast button colors is the same as the Super Famicom but rotated clockwise 90 degrees.