This could be the ope source home video gamea console we have been looking for since iNDREAMA. Anyone remember that?
It’s been less than a week since the OUYA open-source video game console first debuted on Kickstarter, and the project is already closing in on the $5,000,000 mark. And yes, you read that right — 5 million dollars. Considering that the guys behind the project were originally aiming for slightly less than a million bucks, they are understandably overwhelmed and elated at the avalanche of support they’ve received from the Kickstarter community.
The folks behind the OUYA are long-time gamers and die-hard fans of console games. They bemoan the fact that so much of the industry is now focused on smartphones and tablets, and that the development and consumer costs of modern consoles are so high. According to the OUYA guys, there is an untapped market for a system that delivers a fantastic sensory experience and is open to small development shops and hobbyists. A puny handheld tablet can’t begin to compare to the video and audio delivered by a big-screen HDTV and surround-sound system, and the time is ripe to remind everyone about that. As it says on Kickstarter:
Let’s open this sucker up! 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.
The OUYA is not intended to compete directly with the big players in the console world, and, accordingly, it’s set to be sold for $99 in order to keep it a reasonable alternative machine. At that price-point, the hardware can’t offer bleeding-edge performance, but it’s still pretty respectable.
According to the specs on Kickstarter, the OUYA will sport the following:
Tegra3 quad-core processor
8GB of internal flash storage
HDMI connection to the TV, with support for up to 1080p HD
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
Bluetooth LE 4.0
USB 2.0 (one)
Wireless controller with standard controls (two analog sticks, d-pad, eight action buttons, a system button), a touchpad
To me, the most interesting thing about the OUYA is that it will be so open and friendly to developers and tinkerers. There are to be no licensing costs for the SDK, and the OUYA guys promise to streamline the publishing process. As well, the hardware specs will be available, making things easy for hardware hackers to get creative with their soldering irons and JTAG programmers.