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Ouya responds to negative reviews

Console maker says it hasn't sent out review units yet, experience will be fine-tuned for June launch

The Ouya began shipping to early backers of its Kickstarter campaign late last month, and this week some unflattering reviews of the hardware appeared on tech sites like The Verge and Engadget. Those sites suggested that the system wasn't ready for release, and in a statement to GamesIndustry International earlier today, Ouya suggested it wasn't ready for review, either.

The representative called this a "preview period" for early supporters to get a first look at the hardware, and said the company hadn't shipped any units to the press yet with the intention of them being reviewed.

"We will be making Ouya review units available in early to mid-May so that you are able to review the more complete consumer experience and prepare your coverage in time for the June 4th retail launch," a representative said. "To clarify for you--Ouya has sent no review units out to press. Any reviews you have seen online are a result from individuals who received early backer units from supporting our Kickstarter."

The representative said the preview period will be used "to test our eco-system and fine-tune the experience" in advance of the retail launch.

As for what Ouya backers can expect to see changed or improved for the proper launch, a blog post on the company's website said it is working on external storage solutions, simplified installation processes, more payment options, and controller support for video player apps. It is also adding new games to the online catalogue on a daily basis.

Latest comments (10)

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 3 years ago
As for what Ouya backers can expect to see changed or improved for the proper launch, a blog post on the company's website said it is working on external storage solutions, simplified installation processes, more payment options, and controller support for video player apps
Wait... shouldn't all of those things have been part of the unit from the get-go? Well, if they are added, fine. Early "reviews" never tell the entire story anyway.
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Ruben Monteiro Engineer 3 years ago
I'll give it the benefit of the doubt, but I'm having trouble seing the relevancy of this product.
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Nuttachai Tipprasert Programmer 3 years ago
a blog post on the company's website said it is working on external storage solutions, simplified installation processes, more payment options, and controller support for video player apps
Sorry, but, IMO, these problems alone take more than 60 days to solve even they work 24/7 and 20 hours a day. Did I already address the controller latency and UI lag problem?

Seeing how they need KickStarter to support their development, I don't believe that they have enough man power to solve all the problems.
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Barrie Tingle Live Producer, Maxis3 years ago
I was initially a backer of Ouya on Kickstarter but I withdrew my funding offer before it finished (they had passed their mark so was no real loss to them) because the more I read into it, the more the system and their plan didn't make sense.

It turned from being an Android powered console where Android mobile games and home brew games could be released and sold to looking for big publishers and titles going onto the system to being totally open system, not sure what Publishers they have now but would the big games publishers put their property on a totally open system? Would people be inclined to purchase games or just get them through other means?

I'm sure they thought about that too but I stopped following their progress as closely at that point although I did see all the features they planned to ship WITHOUT and it seemed crazy they would release it in that state rather than hold it, get those features in and then release it.
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Mark Nelson Games/Level Designers 3 years ago
To me, it seems like it could be a great little media player to replace my EOL Boxee Box. At 3/5 the price... The games and other functions are a nice little bonus.
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Andrew Jakobs Lead Programmer 3 years ago
Yeah right, these problems were already mentioned a few months ago when some reviewers got their hands on prototype hardware, and it seems the problems still haven't been fixed, so don't count on them being fixed in 2 months time.. Also there are already a lot of other android-on-a-stick devices out there so the ouya really doesn't add anything special as it's just an android-on-a-stick device with it's own skin over android.
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Ian Lambert Software Engineer, Criterion Games3 years ago
"...to test our eco-system..."
Seeing as this definitely isn't an eco-system, they missed a chance for some fantastic Blood Dragon-esque 80s technobabble here. Technosystem? Cybersystem? Robosystem? Colour me disappointed...

On a more relevant note, I'm worried that the list of things they're improving don't seem to tally with the list of things those early impressions criticised (notably the controller). I still like the idea of a low-cost, indie-driven niche console - reminds me of my early hopes for Raspberry Pi and Linux on PS3 - but I'm still far from convinced the Ouya is the answer. Seems underpowered, and as Barrie says, it seems like they've lost their focus and are moving too far towards the deep waters of the console ocean where Sony and MS will eat them for breakfast.
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Michael Bennett Jack of all trades, master of some. 3 years ago
Ouya doesn't make sense for the western market. But why would they aim for the western market?
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Jamie Knight International Editor in Chief, Playnation3 years ago
A strange and eerie absence of Bruce Everiss comments....?

I would have thought the 'mouthpiece pf the mobile industry' would have been on this like a tramp on a McDonalds, bleating on about how 'mobile is the gaming platform of the future, consokles are dead....tadda, yadda, yadda '

mobile gaming....it only does Angry Birds sh*te
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Shane Sweeney Academic 3 years ago
Succeed or fail I am more interested in who the Ouya inspires.
The flattening of hardware means we have gone from Rasberry Pi to Sifteo to Ouya to who knows where at break neck speeds.

Hopefully if this fails it does not scare start ups from producing similar ideas. Hardware is going to become incredibly cheap, software and design will be the real challenge.

User Experience costs whether your Sony, Nintendo, Google, Apple or Ouya don't get cheaper with any equivalent Moore's law.
If anything they go up with complexity as user expectations are higher.
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