Ouya founder and CEO Julie Uhrman has addressed the scepticism and a few of the criticisms surrounding the company’s in-development console.
Since its Kickstarter campaign began smashing records, many have expressed concern that the Ouya was merely a bare-board prototype, that the controller wasn’t finished, and that Kickstarter’s rules meant that the project’s 32,000-plus backers had no guarantee that the console would ship at all.
“Those are totally valid comments,” Uhrman said. “At the end of the day, people have invested in us and our success. They are personally invested in us and we are personally invested into delivering to them something great. We all have reputations on the line.”
Uhrman was, however, confident in her company’s ability to follow through.
“It is one thing to make something, make promises and build it in the garage and no one really knows if it comes out or doesn’t come out,” she said.
“We took a very different approach. We wanted to get the support of gamers and developers. We wanted to make sure there was as big a need for this as we thought. We did that all knowing that if there was a need, we could deliver and would deliver.”
A strong launch will be crucial for the Ouya, and it won’t have one without strong games, something Uhrman appears well aware of.
“Funding game development is really important to us. Having great content at launch is critical. We are actively pursuing those in a much more aggressive way now because we can,” she said, referring to the staggering amount of money the project has raised above and beyond its Kickstarter target.
“For the consumer segment, our focus is content. For the developer segment, it’s tools, it’s access to things that will bring their games to our platform more easily,” she said.
So is a launch date that is a mere eight months away too ambitious?
“We feel good about it. That’s the plan,” said Uhrman.