Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo may think they have the game console market cornered, but they could be in for a rude surprise if Ouya's Android-based game system is able to gain traction. Serving as a wake-up call to the big three, Ouya has already managed to raise almost three times its $950,000 pledge goal on Kickstarter, getting commitments for over $2.8 million from more than 22,000 backers in less than two full days.
The idea is to revolutionize console gaming as we know it. Ouya aims to be a $99 device consisting of an Nvidia Tegra 3 processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal flash storage, HDMI output, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB 2.0 port, wireless controller, and Android 4.0 running the show. What's more, the developers encourage rooting without worry that you'll void you're warranty.
"Have at it: It's easy to root (and rooting won't void your warranty)," Ouya's developers stated on their Kickstarter page. "Everything opens with standard screws. Hardware hackers can create their own peripherals, and connect via USB or Bluetooth. You want our hardware design? Let us know. We might just give it to you. Surprise us!"
The big thing, however, is to encourage developers to build affordable games through an open market ecosystem. All games will be at least partially free-to-play, which might make it difficult to attract big name publishers. At the same time, paid games should end up being significantly cheaper than on other consoles.
Ouya is seeking funds to convert its prototype into production-ready models, but beyond that, the company needs help with how best to spend the millions it's already raised on Kickstarter.
"We are blown away by your support. With your help, we just raised $2 million. And it’s only the first day. Now we want to blow you away," Ouya said. "The biggest thing for us right now: we are working on our stretch goals, what we can do if we raise more money. It might take us a few days to figure that out, and we want your help."
If you have an idea to share, you can hit the developers up at ideas at ouya dot tv. In addition, there's still 28 days left to offer a pledge and claim one of the reward tiers, which start at $10.