A Declaration of Indie-Pendence
The entire scope of video gaming has changed.
It’s been a busy week.
As most of us probably know, the Ouya was released. This is the first console independently financed by donations from gamers like us. It was an ambitious project and many (especially me) never thought it’d see the light of day.
And now you can go buy one. Or ten.
Early reviews aren’t exactly stellar. This console is definitely taking some baby steps, stumbling about somewhat frequently, and obviously lacking the polish we would expect from a MicroSonTendo console. There are problems, bugs, and hardly any games worth mentioning.
All in all…this is a pretty lackluster premiere. A stained red carpet.
So, let’s all go buy one.
I mean it.
All of us.
As soon as possible.
You see, despite it all, the Ouya is nothing short of miraculous. The fact there is a (mostly) functional new console out there that was created and released for less than nine million bucks is just about unbelievable. Considering that the big name console are made with budgets in the HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS, the Ouya cost a fraction of most system’s marketing budgets. We all celebrate the relative pennies it cost to make stellar games such as Minecraft, Braid, or Gunpoint, well, you ask me, this is ten times more impressive.
Now, financial accolades aside, we need to look at the Ouya from a philosophical standpoint. Essentially, this system is our Prometheus: stealing fire from the gods so that we may all bask in the light.
The Ouya represents limitless potential.
Right now I see the world of games the way the world of movies was in the early-mid 90s. Clever artists were out there realizing that the big studios were simply one way to get a movie made, not the only way. Tarantino and Linklater and Smith and so many others were crafting true works of art in completely revolutionary ways that forced the movie industry to evolve in ways that benefitted their profit margins less, and the artists considerably more. Thank the goddesses of Hyrule moviegoers were smart enough to realize these artists should be celebrated, and bought their tickets.
Now it’s our turn.
You want to make a game? You want there to be a dozen different Bastions and Limbo and To The Moons? Buy an Ouya. The success of those games was anomalous. They just so happened to get some attention that happened to translate to interest from the big developers and console companies. A lot of right places at various right times. Happy happenings, but rare ones for sure.
But we can change that. We can establish a new nation where anyone with a vision and strong back can produce wildly imaginative and wonderfully new works for us to explore. We no longer have to hear horror stories of developers at odds with corporations that ultimately end in pitiful heartbreak. We can finally claim a future by gamers for gamers.
Go buy a fucking Ouya.
Come on, it’s only a hundred bucks.
Invest in our future.