“Imagine if you could press a button and reset an entire industry.”
Do you still remember OUYA, the Android console that launched on a crowdfunding website asking for $950K but raised $8.6M in just a month and another $15M from new investors?
It was a small, inexpensive and open-source console. You could use AND play apps on the big screen and play games with a touch pad (!) controller. Almost everything that you could do with your smartphone, was in that small box!
And because there was such high demand for its hardware, it had to delay its launch by 3 weeks. With 31000 developers and 178 games on release, everything seemed to be perfect. Finally, when it came out, it sold out on amazon in just a matter of hours.
But when gamers got their hands on the new console, the experience was underwhelming to say the least. These are the reasons why it failed:
1) The controller
Buttons would often stick and after a few days, the analog stick would wear off. Input lag was also a thing, so it would be impossible to play certain games. The controller itself cost HALF the price of the console. And turned out that the PS4 is having a touch pad controller aswell…
2) The hardware
OUYA used a dated hardware, which was only capable of running 2D and simple 3D gameplay. It wasn’t powerful enough to compete with its other rivals: PS4 and XBox One.
3) Launch titles
Whereas the PS4 and the Xbox One had compelling launch titles, such as Call of Duty: Ghosts, Battlefield 4, Assassin’s Creed Blackflag IV etc… the OUYA had none. There wasn’t a single game that broke sales.
4) “All the games on it will be free, at least to try.”
Over 600 games were free to try. Here is one example:
(Yes, a game where you can watch the spectacularity of raining pixels.)
In the end, OUYA was a total disappointment. With its dated graphics and games, it couldn’t compete with the generation of console gaming that we have today. It was a ‘Commodore 64’ with Smartphone functions that was released at the wrong time in the wrong era.