Ouya made serious headlines back in 2012 when the Android video game console nabbed $8.5 million in crowdfunding from Kickstarter. However, when the Ouya shipped in 2013, many owners and critics were quick to point out the console’s numerous shortcomings and weak points.
Sadly, the Ouya never recovered from its rocky beginning, and has now come to a close. Video game accessory manufacturer, Razer, officially announced today that it has acquired some key assets from Ouya, including the console’s name, software, online store, and developers.
The deal, which was first rumored about a month ago, does not include the Ouya hardware, though that’s likely due to Razer already having its own game console, dubbed the Razer Forge.
The original idea for the Ouya sounded good on paper, and seemed to be the next big step in living-room gaming. In fact, many gamers saw the Ouya as a way to drive casual and mobile gamers toward a box-top gaming experience where they could experience all the casual games they already enjoyed on the go, but on their TV at home.
However, the Ouya’s failing, including issues with the hardware and a lack of competitive games, caused the console to fade from the spotlight. In response, Ouya’s founder and CEO, Julie Uhrman promised to release an updated version of the console that would include a better controller, double the storage space, and better wifi.
Unfortunately, slow sales and bad reviews kept the Ouya from reclaiming gamer and media attention and the company continued its downward spiral. Even a $10 million investment from Alibaba wasn’t enough to dig Ouya from its hole, and the company melted into nothingness.
Neither Razer nor Ouya released any details on the former’s acquisition of the failed console, and such information is likely to remain private going forward. However, Razer did mention it’s looking to move Ouya users to its own console, the Forge, and they will be offering discounts for gamers to switch to the new device. Ouya owners will be able to continue playing the games they own on the Forge.
Razer, for its part, may be looking to the future, with this purchase setting them up for a major leg into the Android console market. While that market is still small and struggling to find its way, Razer will be well positioned once Android consoles do finally find a strong hold among gamers. When that happens, it’s possible Razer will become the Steam of Android console gaming. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out over the next few years.
What do you think of Razer’s acquisition of Ouya? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.