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May 2019 Retro Gaming Article


May 29, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

You may have thought the Ouya was long gone, but it's official end is still a month away

End of the Ouya game console
It started as one of Kickstarter's most successful campaigns for video game hardware, but the Ouya officially sunsets in June.
You may be startled to realize the Ouya website and store have been in place and functioning since the Android game console came to market June 25, 2013, for $99. Of similar surprise is the fact that Sony Betamax tapes were still in production until March of 2016! Who'd have thought it? A lot of things just keep on going - even when you're not watching. But the Ouya will no longer be one of them. Razor is shutting down it's website, store and associated functionality on June 25. If you're feeling a bit sad about this, check out some Ouya images.

Ouya game console drawing The Ouya had lofty goals and convinced a lot of people that this would be "the people's game console" and would turn the gaming industry on it's head. Didn't happen. By July 2015, Razer Inc. had acquired Ouya's employees and content library and discontinued the Ouya hardware.

They tried to migrate Ouya owners to their Forge micro-console, promising that Ouya content would function on the platform. I opted out of that scenario and decided to use it as a ROM station until it fizzled.

A few days ago, I got an email from the Razer folks saying the Ouya services are being shuttered on June 25. Unfortunately, the Ouya is not like my old Atari consoles that still faithfully play all my favorite games from the 80s.

Most Ouya games use online authentication to verify a game's ownership status. So, shuttering the online elements brings that to a close. There may be some work-arounds, but for most of us - the Ouya is over.

1250 Ouya games

I liked The Ouya... for the most part

For me, the Ouya seemed as though it was going to send a clear message to the big three game manufacturers. It was the first indie game console - i was aware of - to not only make a name for itself, but take a piece of the pie from Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft. While they launched, delivered and sold games online, the overall experience posed no threat to anyone else in the video game industry.

I found a few games I liked and I thought it was cool that nearly all the games could be tried for free. THAT was a nice feature. Like many Ouya owners, I gravitated toward the many emulators available for the console and began using it as a ROM-station. It easily let me play thousands of games on many different consoles.

But the Ouya had a few drawbacks, the controller being the most prominent. It was awful. Connecting this Bluetooth device was always problematic and took several minutes to actually recognize and function with the Ouya.

Despite the end of the Ouya era, you have to admire Julie Uhrman (Ouya CEO) having the guts to create a new kind of console and build a functional ecosystem from which gamers could try and buy games. That was quite a feat for a brand new niche game console. A lot of people like to disparage the Ouya, without really understanding what went into it and how successful it was compared to a lot of micro-consoles. I firmly believed very few of the haters have ever seen an Ouya, let alone actually played a game on one. It had it's faults, but it was pretty cool for what it was.

If you have any funds remaining on the system, now is the time to do something with them.

From Razer's email, also available online:
OUYA & Razer Forge TV Services Shutdown

Thank you for your loyalty to OUYA Gaming and Razer Forge TV. We're writing to let you know that these platforms will be shutdown and no longer available for usage on June 25, 2019.

Your Account:
On June 25, 2019 your OUYA / Razer Cortex account will be disabled. So, we encourage you to utilize your account funds prior to the shutdown.

Games/Gameplay:
After June 25, 2019 continued gameplay will vary depending on the individual game developers, but the games will no longer be available on the OUYA platform. Contact the developers for more information.

We thank you for your loyalty over the years and hope you've enjoyed the service. With the innovations continually happening in the gaming industry, we're looking forward to bringing more great gaming options in the future.
Best Regards,
The Razer Team

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