Opinions about the upcoming Android based home gaming console Ouya seem to be constantly changing. However, as support continues to grow, some major players in the gaming industry are taking notice. Ouya just may be the catalyst able to cause a serious shift in a home console market dominated by the big three: Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo.
In fact, Square Enix has officially announced they plan to release a version of Final Fantasy III specifically for Ouya. Though a mobile version of the game currently exists, Square Enix promises the Ouya version will be graphically superior.
As Ouya gains support from major studios and raises more and more money on Kickstarter, the system that was once just an innovative design and idea begins to evolve into a force to be reckoned with. Mark Kern, ex-World of Warcraft lead and CEO of Firefall developer Red 5 Studios, spoke to eurogamer about Ouya’s potential and his reason for supporting it.
“For the price of the Kickstarter why not try it,” he said. “Yeah, they may fall. Some people are saying ‘oh it’s vaporware’. But I want to get behind people that want to challenge the status quo, who want to try something different.”
Today, it takes truckloads of money and resources to develop a AAA title for any home console. Kern argues that Ouya’s vision of an open-platform console is much better for the industry, and that a closed- platform model seriously suppresses creativity.
“It’s killing innovation because no one can take those risks anymore or try something new with those kinds of numbers,” he said. “I think that’s bad for gamers and I think that’s cripplingly bad for developers. And to be honest I don’t see Sony or Microsoft embracing the changes that are happening in the gaming industry right now.”
In the rapidly evolving techno-sphere we live in, Kern argues it becomes harder and harder to justify an expensive gaming console when so many devices are available that provide close to the same experience.
“I think more and more it’s hard to justify a separate device to do gaming if- and this is the big qualifier, if you can get that experience or and equivalent experience on something else. That something else hasn’t arrived yet,” he said.
Right now there seems to a path to success carved out in the video game market for Ouya. If support continues to grow and outside developers like Square Enix continue to bring popular titles to the platform, the sky just may be the limit.