Monday, 3 March 2014

OUYA... take a seat, we need to talk

OUYA - you deserve better than this. Everyone here loves you, this is a safe place, we say these things because you are hurting those who love you dearly.

Its been just over 3 months that the OUYA has sat next to my telly, and its been good. The little console birthed by the Kickstarter community has survived the last 2 games 'purges' in my house, albeit by the skin of its teeth.

The new console shine has worn off and some of the systems shortcomings are starting to show - OUYA we need to talk.

The constant software updates.

Up until recently the OUYA would randomly decide it was time to update - and if it had made this decision on your behalf, you could not use it until it had finished. The last 3 updates failed miserably and ended up making the OUYA loop into a constant cycle of trying to upgrade, failing, download an update, installing, failing and repeating. In the end I had to disconnect my broadband hub so that the unit couldn't update, uninstalling or disabling any software that messed up the update routine and then allowing it to continue. Now, before the masses scream 'your own fault you dirty haXXOr!! lol!', I will move onto my second part...

[Also they have addressed this... yadda yadda..]

The thing requires hacking for basic stuff.

If I had a time machine I would jump in it and travel back in time and hold someone hostage until the OUYA team made the unit Google Play certified.

I understand having your own marketplace, its a great way of providing your customers with 100% controller compatible games whilst making a little bit more money... But imagine this, you have both. One store for your product [OUYA] focus and Google Play store also at hand - then make the tools freely available to add OUYA controller support to Play store titles. All of a sudden you have thousands of customers requesting controller support for the latest Candy or Bird based freemium title - developers could see the benefit of making the game available to a larger market AND you have the latest and greatest titles driving customers towards your hardware. Once you have the hardware numbers sorted, sweeten the deal for the publishers to provide OUYA versions via your own store.

Anyone who thinks this is just dreaming or unrealistic - What about the Amazon app marketplace? They make decent money on Google's platform, despite a lot of content being available via either marketplace.

Also lastly - this would not cost anything. You can still have your independent market place that you support, but also give the end user freedom of choice - and man do I love freedom of choice. Why not host an OUYA app on the Play store and sell pads to everyone with a tablet - instantly you have even more customers buying hardware and experiencing the OUYA marketplace [Like Moga]. Sigh...

For Odin's beard's sake - host a bloody Humble Bundle!

Imagine you had a Humble Bundle one week, you offer a couple of 'beat the average' offers - one of these includes the console and all the games your offering in the bundle. Holy shit, that would sell units... Also why not pre-install the Humble Bundle app and set the ground for future offers? I feel like I'm taking crazy pills [note. I am]. Imagine the OUYA being the 'home console of Humble Bundle' - Indie focussed, high value for the end user AND your company is actively supporting developers AND charity. AaAAaaargh! Please someone listen!

The games are fast becoming 'meh'.

The OUYA has some of my favourite titles on it, Organ Trail being my personal GOTY and a host of amazing titles that simply don't exist anywhere else.


I feel like the originality of the system is slowly being consumed by lazy games. Games that exist solely because they can, games that use 'indie' as an excuse for poor design or implementation. Please, if you are making a game currently and you read this - take a second and ask yourself if your game needs to exist. Games can be fun, games can be art, they can also be shit. Making a shit game is simply making a shit game, if you want to make a statement paint your privates orange and rub them on the Houses of Parliament - you'll get the attention you desire and at least pretend it was worth doing.

The controller.

My pad works great. When it chooses to.

Lets end on a positive note.

I say these things because I love my OUYA. It is a beautiful little box that has given me hundreds of hours of enjoyment. Its home to games I will remember as classics and am thankful I have experienced.

I want to keep using it and I want to buy into the brand wholeheartedly.

OUYA, have a bath, put on some fresh underpants and get back out there - you may surprise yourself.

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