If you actually thought a company could successfully design, market, launch and support a gaming console for $99 with only $1,000,000 in funding, you might be certifiably nuts. Console making is a business that costs hundreds of millions of dollars to initiate and maintain, but the Ouya project page on Kickstarter would have gamers believe that it only takes a few bucks.
The developers of this console concept are looking to outside investors to officially fund the Ouya. What was the Kickstarter effort for? Well, to make the Ouya a household name, of course.
The key quote? Here it is from Ouya CEO Julie Urhman to Develop:
"We're looking for additional funds of money but more importantly we wanted to take it to Kickstarter regardless. Because Kickstarter will give us the support we need from the gamers and developers to get additional content on the devices and bring additional partners to us."
When these folks put Ouya up on Kickstarter with a budget goal just shy of $1,000,000, they didn't do it to create a console. They did it to create buzz and to make a big splash in the gaming scene. By all accounts, it worked. People know what Ouya is, and the designers behind it are taking that knowledge (along with the 38,000 Backers and $4-5 million pledged) to potential investors in order to get more money.
Heres the thing… Even with $5,000,000 in the bank, this company needs a whole lot more in order to bring the Ouya to market. The Verge snagged a line from Kevin Dent, CEO of Tiswaz Entertainment:
"It's not going to ship. It's just not going to ship. It just costs too much to develop this. $4 million is nothing. They've got to pay fabrication. They've got to pay designers. They've got to pay manufacturers. They've got to market it. It's a business. $4 million is nothing."
If $4 million is just a drop in the bucket, what does that mean for Backers of the Ouya? Well, by creating a project on Kickstarter, the designers made a "good faith" agreement to deliver on their promises. They're not required by law to do so, but they'll try. If they fail, they have to refund the Backers for their money spent.
Kickstarter proved that there is interest for a new gaming console like the Ouya; however, is 38,000 enough of a crowd to convince would-be investors that this machine is worth supporting?
You can read what I think of the Ouya right here. How about you folks?