The Android-power Ouya—which scored $8.5 million through a Kickstarter campaign in 2013—has managed to an additional $15 million in venture capital. Apparently this investment group which is headed up by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers—they also invested in Zynga and Groupon—see some potential in Ouya to grow. Ouya has stated that the extra cash will be used to cover the demand for their console’s retail launch in June.
Speaking of the retail launch, the Ouya has been pushed back from June 4 to June 25. The reason given was to meet the increased demand for the $99 console and to tighten up things with the controller. Chances are that things have also been tightened up the Ouya’s interface which was said to be a bit sluggish at times in hands-on-videos. The delay effectively boots Ouya out of the E3 media zone whereas hype is concerned, however Ouya could very well be at E3 to hype titles and the console anyway.
The $15 million investment also brought Bing Gordon—former chief creative officer of EA—into the Ouya fold. Gordon will be a part of Ouya’s board of directors. Of the Ouya Gordon said, “Ouya’s open source platform creates a new world of opportunity for established and emerging independent game creators and gamers alike. There are some types of games that can only be experienced on a TV, and Ouya is squarely focused on bringing back the living room gaming experience. Ouya will allow game developers to unleash their most creative ideas and satisfy gamers craving a new kind of experience.”
While the investment and new board member point to some optimism about the potential in the console from others, there are still concerns about the management of Ouya and vagueness on some issues such as exclusive games to the system, how many full retail games will be ready at launch, and other features that are standard with consoles of the current generation such as parental control and community features. As it stands there is only a little news of games that are finished, a few screenshots of those games, and a couple of finished games ready.
Last but not least, Ouya will not be working with the ESRB which handles video game ratings in the U.S and will come up with its own rating system/screening setup. This should go hand-in-hand with the absent parental controls for the game. As it stands Ouya founder and CEO Julie Uhrman hasn’t really gone into detail about it at all.