A few years back companies thought the next big thing in console gaming was… small. And cheap. And Android-based.
That future never really arrived. And now gaming hardware company Razer is putting another nail in the coffin and shutting down the services that would have powered the Ouya, Razer Forge TV, and Mad Catz MOJO… if anyone was still using them.
Things sort of kicked off with a promising startup called Ouya, which raised $5 million during a crowdfunding campaign in 2012. The idea was to produced an Android-powered box with an NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor, 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of storage. Sure, those specs are anemic compared with a PlayStation or Xbox device… but with a $99 price tag, this thing was going to be a lot more affordable — and the folks behind it wanted to encourage mainstream and indie developers to contribute to a gaming ecosystem.
The platform never really took off, but Razer eventually acquired Ouya in 2015 in hopes of leveraging the company’s software ecosystem for… something.
Razer had actually introduced its own $100 micro-console earlier in 2015. The Razer Forge TV was basically an Android TV box with an optional game controller and an emphasis on gaming.
It… was also never a big seller. But Razer did eventually introduce a Cortex Game Store for the platform using the technology it acquired when it bought Ouya.
Meanwhile, rival gaming accessory maker Mad Catz had introduced its own Android-based game console in 2013. The M.O.J.O. had more powerful hardware, but it also had a much higher price tag of $250. The following year it added support for Ouya software.
So basically all three of these Android-based game consoles eventually wound up using the same software ecosystem… and Razer’s on the hook for maintaining the software and services. And Razer’s decided not to bother doing that anymore.
In an update to the Razer Forge TV Support page, Razer notes that “The Forge TV, Ouya, and Mad Catz MOJO game stores are no longer being supported, and therefore will be shut down” on June 25th, 2019.
If you have one of those devices, the hardware should continue to work. But the software may be a mixed bag.
Have an Ouya? You’re probably largely out of luck. But if you have a Razer Forge TV or Mad Catz M.O.J.O. you’ll still be able to use it as a normal Android TV device with access to the Google Play Store.
Ouya accounts will be deleted though… and you won’t be able to purchase games or re-download any previously purchased games. So you may want to make sure to download all of your purchased titles before June 25th… but even that might not be enough.
Some titles may require a purchase validation at launch, and if that’s the case those games will no longer be playable after June 25th. Razer says you’ll have to check with individual game developers to find out if that’s the case for specific titles.