The Ouya hasn’t been in production for years now, but a recent update from Razer confirms that this console is well and truly dead as the platform’s digital stores will soon be closing down.
“The Forge TV, OUYA, and MadCatz MOJO game stores are no longer being supported, and therefore will be shut down,” reads an FAQ on the Razer website. “The services will shut down on June 25, 2019…The hardware will still function. You will still be able to use it as you would any Android TV set top box.”
What this means is that it will no longer be possible to buy an Ouya game (at least officially) via the platform’s digital stores as of June 25. Given that one of the main features of the Ouya was its all-digital lineup, it’s not really possible to acquire any new games via legal means after that date (at least without performing some heavy hardware modding). That date also marks the time when all user accounts will be shut down. As such, Razer recommends that everyone downloads whatever games they want before that date.
Even then, this shutdown carries a few complications which put those who wish to continue using their Ouyas in a strange spot. Namely, Razer warns that any games which require “purchase validation upon launch” will not work following the shutdown. Razer suggests that it may be possible to contact the game’s developer to acquire that manually, but it does sound like that might be a bit of a hassle.
Frankly, we’re surprised that the digital stores lasted this long. The Ouya rode a wave of hype to a highly-successful initial $8.5m Kickstarter campaign in 2013. Many were excited by the prospect of a digital device that operated outside of many of the boundaries established by the console market. After Ouya fulfilled its initial Kickstarter backer shipments, they struggled to sell many additional units. Ouya just never boasted the game lineup it needed in order to become a real contender amongst gaming giants.
If it’s any consolation to the Ouya team, services like Google Stadia and consoles like the disc-free Xbox One S suggest that they were on the right path in regards to offering a glimpse of what gaming’s future was going to look like.