Ouya Assets Acquired by Razer

Posted by at 8:35 am on July 29, 2015


Ouya, the Kickstarter-funded Android-based game console, has been acquired by Razer, confirming rumors of a potential sale. The game peripherals company has acquired the software assets of Ouya, as well as its technical and developer relations team, as it attempts to bolster the efforts around the Forge TV console and Cortex, Razer’s gaming platform.

The all-cash deal does include many staff, but does still leave out some important parts of the business. TechCrunch reports the deal does not include the hardware arm itself, namely the console and controller, and that CEO and co-founder Julie Uhrman will not be making the transition.

The current plans for Razer involve the integration of Ouya games and accounts to the Cortex TV gaming platform, with the relaunch of the Ouya game store as Cortex for Android TV. The 200,000 Ouya users will also be migrated over, with at least a year of support being offered for existing Ouya hardware, as well as deals to switch hardware for the Forge TV console and Razer controllers.

Polygon reports that one initiative Ouya created is already causing a headache post-acquisition. The million-dollar Free The Games fund, created in mid-2013, promised to help fund Kickstarter-funded games if the developers promised to exclusively launch on the platform, among other terms.

While the intentions of the fund were good, it appears that Ouya refused to pay out some of the money owed, because of a clause in the contract concerning bankruptcy and restructuring. Multiple developers told the report they were advised not to expect their promised money after the acquisition.

Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan later told the report that his company would be making the payments to developers, said to be in excess of $600,000. Tan advised that his team didn’t look at the debts because “that’s not how the deal was structured for us,” since Razer was acquiring parts of the company, not the entire entity. Tan said he was aware of the fund, but not the outstanding debt.

Developers will have to sign a new contract with Razer in order to get the funds, with some changes. While games will not be exclusive to a specific platform anymore, developers will be expected to give away the equivalent value of their fund payment in games for the Razer Cortex storefront.

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