by Matt Hawkins
The Android drive alternative to tradition consoles, the Ouya, has been out in the wild for a couple of weeks now. And many are wondering how the bold new face of gaming is a faring.
Perhaps the best people to ask are those who make games for the machine. Which is exactly what both Gamasutra and EDGE decided to do, according to a report from GameIndustry, who cites both aforementioned sources. And the response thus far? Some are happy, while others are not.
Not surprisingly, Matt Thorson is rather pleased, according to EDGE. He’s the developer of the Ouya’s most high profile exclusive, TowerFall, and all that attention has been a definite boon:
“The response has been amazing… A lot of high profile people in games have been praising the game, which is of course fantastic, and there’s been a lot of talk among gamers as well. Launching on Ouya got me a lot of attention, and the sales have been better than expected.”
Though it helped if one did not have crazy expectations. Then again, many had none to begin with. Like Eric Froemling, creator of BombSquad, who told Gamasutra:
“I really had no clue what to expect, but I’ve been happy so far; I peaked at close to 200 sales per day and am currently sitting at around 70. It sounds like everyone’s been seeing a bit of a sales drop after the initial few-week surge, so I’m curious to see what the tail will wind up looking like.”
Wheras E McNeill, creator Bombball, did have loft aspirations that were not led to dissapointment:
“Bombball is making a little over $30 a day, before Ouya’s cut. I kind of knew from the start that I was making a game that would be difficult to sell. Still, I let my expectations get inflated over time, and now I’m a little disappointed with the sales.”
One key issue is how much time and energy was spent getting something to work on the Ouya to being wtih. Compare and contrast the following from Rami Ismail, creator of Super Crate Box, whose game enjoyed healthy download numbers (though being both high profile for starters with and also free were perhaps the primary factors for its popularity):
“Android, or you can compile it to an Android target, there’s not really a reason to not at least try. Super Crate Box was ported over in a weekend.”
But then you have Ryan Wiemeyer, creator of Organ Trail:
“It’s sold about half of what my low-end predictions were. Last I checked we were at 501 purchases from 13,112 downloads. (a 3.8 percent attach rate.) This accounts for about 0.1 percent of our total Organ Trail sales to date (which is over 400,000.) So, I don’t even know if it was worth the man hours yet. Then again… Organ Trail was a pain to add controller support to and that was the bulk of the port.”
In the end, it’s still a bit too early to really tell, though the Ouya is not exactly the self-publishing paradise that many were hoping it would be. It’s also worth considering the reason why many picked up an Ouya in the first place; not necessarily to play the hottest new games from indie devs but to easily emulate classic console titles.