Ouya to Start Shipping to Kickstarter

By Joe Rizzo February 28, 2013

Ouya is an up and coming video game console that runs on its own version of the Android operating system. The project was founded last year by Julie Uhrman, who is a gaming veteran. Together with Yves Behar and Muffi Ghadiali they put together an engineering team to develop Ouya.

Development for Ouya was funded by means of Kickstarter. They raised about $8.6 million making them one of the website’s second highest earning project in Kickstarter history. It had tens of thousands of backers, all pledging to help bring Ouya to life.

Ouya is planning on offering an exclusive store for applications and games designed specifically for the Ouya platform. Ouya will include the TwitchTV application right out of the box. TwitchTV is a video game broadcasting and chat community. It allows gamers to watch other gamers’ live streams and recorded replays. It will also include access to the OnLive video game streaming service.

All of the systems can be used as development kits. This allows any Ouya owner and gamer to also be a developer. No licensing fee would be required. If you are developing a game, you will be required to have some kind of “free to play” aspect to it. This can be a free version, a free trial version or possibly purchasable upgrades.

Today, Ouya announced that it will begin shipment of the Android based game console to Kickstarter backers in one month, on March 28. Julie Uhrman said in a statement, "Tens of thousands of you will receive your Ouya [next month], and you'll get to start playing right away. You will also get to watch Ouya evolve over the coming weeks and months. We'll continue to add new features, refine our user experience, and bring on more games." 

As you can imagine, that is a lot of units to ship out. Although you can pre-order an Ouya unit now for $99.99, the first people to receive theirs will be the ones who supported Ouya through Kickstarter. Uhrman said, “Might take a few weeks to get to everyone, we have a lot of Ouya’s to ship.” They are expecting to get all of the initial units out and have the retail units in outlets sometime in June.

Ouya already has a couple of games that are coming to their console. They have an exclusive title coming from Airtight Games. Kim Swift, and Airtight designer said, "We truly feel that this platform will give us the freedom to fully realize the funky, unique game we have in mind. Though the title will definitely appeal to core gamers in terms of skill and difficulty, it really has a completely unexpected, imaginative slant that's totally at home on this console. Expect an official announcement soon!"

Other gaming companies that are committing support to the Ouya console are Minority Media who will have an adventure puzzler later this year and Tripwire Interactive. They are planning on releasing The Ball next month for Ouya. They are also working on some exclusive titles.

There has been and continues to be a lot of support for the Ouya console. It may be small, but it packs quite a punch.

Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli

TechZone360 Contributing Writer

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