The Wii U starts off the next generation console race successfully but Boxer8 also has plans on making their own console.Boxer8 plans to release a $99 home console called Ouya into the video game market by March 2013. The catch is the games are absolutely free and hacking it is encouraged. The console will run on the Android 4.0 operating system from Google and will also host an app store much like what smartphones have access to.
This movement is aimed to disrupt the gaming market pointing out their overpriced console and game discs. The Ouya follows the free-to-play business model like League of Legends (the most played game in the world at the moment) where users only pay to enhance their gaming experience. At first it looks like the Nintendo Gamecube but the specs for this console are promising as it easily trumps the current generation consoles we have today.
Speaking of tech specs, if the user is not satisfied with the performance, they can easily upgrade, add on or replace the parts by modifying the hardware. Ouya is built to be easy to access. It’s very possible to plug your PS3 controller onto it and have it work.
The kickstarter campaign to raise funds for Ouya has been a major success. They achieved approximately $8.5 million which far exceeds their goal of $950,000. The biggest unknown factor is what games will there be and are there any popular franchises planning to appear on this console. So far, Infinity Ward, Square Enix, and Namco Bandai offered their support to this project. Plenty more individual developers will join in once Ouya launches.
Final Fantasy III will be a launch title and Minecraft seem promising in the debut video. Overall, I feel this console has potential to break the video game market and at $99 even to play classic games free, what could go wrong? How much will Google support this ambitious project?