Gaming news summary for June 10, 2015
Welcome to the Game Replay, the twice-weekly look at the wider world of gaming by the staff of MacNN and Electronista. In today's edition, Halo 5 and Destiny expansion details are revealed, Ouya is allegedly in discussions to be acquired by Razer, and Hearthstone gains a new competitive 'Tavern Brawl' mode.
Alleged debt problems may prompt Ouya sale at auction in future
Ouya, the Kickstarter-funded Android game console, may be in significant financial trouble. The company is looking to sell itself at auction as soon as possible, according to an allegedly leaked memo reportedly sent to investors, with the sale prompted by the company's failure to restructure it's hefty debt, and potentially being used as a way to rectify itself financially.
Companies from US, China said to be interested in buying Ouya
Ouya may be acquired in the not-too-distant future, a report claims. The company behind the Kickstarter-funded Android game console is said to be in talks with a number of companies, both located in the United States as well as in China, though apparently discussions are at an early stage and no offers have been made by any potential suitors.
Mad Catz adds 4K support, Ouya app to Mojo game console
Game peripheral producer Mad Catz has rolled out an update to its Mojo Android game console, adding support for 4K-resolution output of games and apps to compatible high-resolution televisions. The update also introduces Ouya Everywhere, giving the device access to hundreds of games hosted on the competing gaming platform, as well as allowing more games and apps on Google Play to be downloaded to the console.
Limited deal gives Ouya owners access to more than 800 games for free
The team behind the Android gaming console Ouya is trying its hand at a new pricing structure that could draw some extra attention. Polygon found a listing on the Ouya Shop today that offers an "All-Access Pass," giving Ouya owners access to more than 800 games for the price of $60. Ouya states the deal is worth $2,000 for 12 months of free game access through the pass.
Storage increased from 8GB to 16GB, Wi-Fi improved in updated Ouya
Ouya has launched an updated version of its Kickstarter-funded, Android-based game console. Just like the limited-edition white model from the end of 2013, the upgraded version offers an all-black console, a similarly-colored controller, a doubling of the internal storage from 8GB to 16GB, and a number of other small improvements over the original model.
White version of Android console has double internal storage
Ouya has released a limited edition version of its Android-based game console. At the same time as revealing the white edition, available just in the United States, the company released a firmware update to existing versions of the console, which introduces an updated menu system and support for USB-connected external storage.
Target to offer Ouya in all US stores in time for holiday sales
The Android-based Ouya game console is spreading its retail reach in the United States, ahead of the holiday sales. Previously launching in a number of Target, GameStop, and Best Buy stores, the console will now be available in all Target locations across the US, reports Polygon, with store availability of the Ouya in Western Europe and the Middle East also said to be increasing in the next month.
Ouya gaming console converts to media streamer with XMBC Hub app
A stable version of the XMBC media player has been made available to Ouya users via a third-party vendor. The app is available through the official Ouya Discover Store and will turn the console into dedicated media streamer with full access to a wide range of content through the internet, or streamed remotely from another device. XMBC is popular with users for its wide file-type support and customizability, which comes with its open-source basis.
Ouya offers Kickstarter backers $13.37 credit as launch apology
Ouya is providing Kickstarter backers with store credit, after a number consoles were delivered to backers after it launched in retailers to the general public. E-mails sent to backers contain a redeemable code for $13.37 as an apology for the bungled launch, with the account credit usable to buy games or in-game content through the console's Discover store.
Bounty of $100,000 offered to Ouya game with highest pledge total
Crowdfunded game console Ouya is hoping to improve the quality and number of games on its service, by providing funds to developers raising money on Kickstarter. The new campaign will see Ouya matching funds raised through the crowdfunding platform, in exchange for a six-month exclusivity period for the console.
OUYA meets retail target, disappoints hundred of early backers
Indy console OUYA has reached retail on time and has quickly sold out at Amazon UK. The Android-based game console, which first launched on Kickstarter to much fanfare, is also available at a number of other retailers including Best Buy, Target, Game (UK) and the OUYA online store. However, hundreds of early international backers have yet to receive their first-edition consoles despite promises that they would have them before the console hit retail stores.
Mad Catz enters the nascent Android mobile CPU-based console segment
Gaming company Mad Catz has announced that it is developing an Android-based “micro console” that will build on its Android-ready gaming GameSmart peripherals. The company has revealed that its GameSmart accessories will be compatible with Nvidia Tegra-powered devices in a hook-up with the graphics and mobile chip-maker. Although Mad Catz has not publicly announced any specifications for the Project M.O.J.O, the just-announced partnership with Nvidia has led to speculation that the new console will be powered by an Nividia Tegra 4 system-on-a-chip.
Nvidia, Occam Partners, Shasta Ventures provide Ouya funding
The makers of Ouya, the Android-based game console, has received extra funding from investors ahead of its launch. The additional outside investment has now allowed Ouya to set the date of the official public launch as June 25, allowing more time for it to manufacture consoles before shipping units to retailers.
Backers will receive shipping notices for Ouya via e-mail
The Ouya game console has started shipping, with the first wave of shipments being sent today. The commencement of sending consoles to Kickstarter backers follows announcements that Game, a computer game retailer in the United Kingdom, has opened up pre-orders for the device, both in-store and through its website.
MakerBot and Ouya team on novel 3D printed custom console case
To celebrate the impending launch of the crowd-funded Ouya Android gaming console, MakerBot and Ouya have partnered to deliver 3D printed custom cases for the device. Ouya provided MakerBot, the makers of the Replicator 2 Desktop 3D printer, with the design files for the console case and offered the .stl file for download. Users will need access to a MakerBot Replicator 2 printer in order to print the case and reassemble the componentry.
Amazon adds X-Ray functionality to popular TV shows
Amazon has updated the X-Ray feature of its Instant Video service to now include television shows. The update will allow users to view IMDB information for individual episodes of programs, including the names of actors, what other shows they have appeared in, and other similar content. Expanding what the company has done to movies in the last six months since the feature's launch, X-Ray is available to use for a number of popular TV shows on the Kindle Fire, Kindle Fire HD, and the Amazon Instant Video app on the Wii U.
Ouya CEO says she wants to see gaming come back to the television
Gaming on devices such as Apple's iPad and Samsung's Android-powered Galaxy S IV lacks the emotional impact of traditional console gaming, according to one gaming executive. Speaking at Engadget's Expand conference, Ouya CEO Julie Uhrman lamented the lack of depth in mobile games. The Android-powered Ouya console, Uhrman says, will bridge the gap between the accessibility of mobile gaming and the emotional depth made possible by traditional consoles.
Crowd-funded game console to ship on time
The Ouya game console will start shipping to its first non-developer customers on March 28. The Android-based console, funded through over $8.5 million in pledges on Kickstarter, will be shipping on-time to the first wave of backers, with the device expected to arrive in all customer mailboxes before the end of April.
OUYA to get annual hardware refreshes
Indy console maker OUYA has said that it plans to roll out a new console on an annual basis, much like many mobile handset makers do with their flagship models, reports Engadget. The revelation follows Nvidia’s announcement that Tegra 4 devices will be shipping soon, while the OUYA console will begin shipping in March with the older Tegra 3 chipset. As with most mobile games, however, OUYA promises that new titles will be backwards-compatible previous generations.
Kickstarter game console gets support from Best Buy, Target
The Ouya game console will go on sale in stores, shortly after it ships to backers of it's Kickstarter drive. Amazon.com, Best Buy, GameStop and Target will be stocking the Android-powered console when it goes on sale to the general public in June, after orders on the Ouya website ship in April, and after the Kickstarter backers receive theirs in March.
Dev version of console features transparent case, microUSB port
Developer editions of the Android-based, open-source gaming system called Ouya have shipped on time. People who pledged $700 to the extremely-successful Kickstarter campaign will be receiving a developer's edition of the console, as well as early access to the Ouya Development Kit, three months before mainstream editions will be sent to donors.
Rooted, first-run units to ship December 28
Ouya, the open-source, Android-based gaming system will apparently be shipping on time, with early supporters of the system's wildly successful Kickstarter campaign slated to receive the first units in late December. Supporters who pledged as little as $95 are still expected to receive their units in March of next year. Those that contributed more to Ouya's campaign, though, will get first-run, rooted developers' systems with early SDK access.
Kickstarter campaign hits 50,000 consoles sold
Open gaming console Ouya entered the final 48 hours of its Kickstarter campaign with more content announcements. The XBMC media player will appear on the console to provide entertainment hub functionality. Originally the Xbox Media Player, XBMC has been ported to a number of platforms in the past, and its recent Android version will form the backbone of Ouya's implementation. Early Ouya prototypes will be distributed to the XBMC development team, a third of whom are already backers in the Kickstarter campaign.
Quad-core ODROID-X offers hackers new microPC toy
Following in the footsteps of the popular $35 Raspberry Pi ARM-based Linux hacker home theatre microPC, Hardkernel is about to ship the ODROID-X for $129 at the end of July. For the price differential, users will get access to substantially more powerful hardware, not least of which is the 1.4GHz quad-core Samsung Exynos 4412 processor featured in the Galaxy S III. As the video embedded below shows, the it will also offer users a solid gaming experience in the vein of the OUYA Android gaming console that recently took Kickstarter by storm.
Android-based console open to hardware hacking
A Kickstarter campaign to launch an Android-based home console has gained a considerable amount of traction early. The makers of Ouya, an Android-based game console, are seeking to create an open platform that will enable developers to make games without having to jump through the usual licensing and publishing hoops that mainstream titles face.