It's been a while since I made a post in here, but I thought I'd write something tonight.
This time I wanna do a top five list. I'll be covering what I think are the Top 5 most misunderstood products in history.
5. Game Catcher
You guys probably have no idea what Game Catcher is. That's because this is actually something I made. Game Catcher is the very first video game I've ever released to the public on an actual game console. Having been in development for about 7 months, I released it on June 25th for the OUYA for the cheap price of free. My goal with this game was to make an original idea that hadn't been done yet, and I wanted it to be as wacky and silly as possible while also harkening back to the dark ages of video games. I made use of 8-bit tones to generate glorious chiptune music, loads of bright and vibrant pixel art, a ton of different game modes and configurable options, and hilarious sound effects. Unfortunately for me, this game was critically panned by anyone who played it. Many people didn't understand the point, found the game boring and falsely criticized me in particular for copyright infringement, for mentioning the titles of other existing video games inside this game, even though I didn't use any actual content from those games. I think much of the reason why people disliked this game so much was because it was so different from the majority of games today, which involve deep story lines, adult-oriented themes, realistic graphics with dark and gritty color schemes, and cinematic elements. Because we're so used to expecting so much out of a video game today, nobody really understood the philosophy behind Game Catcher. At the same time though, this was my first game, so I can't expect to get things right the first time, can I?
4. The OUYA
As mentioned previously, the OUYA is the console on which I released Game Catcher on, and like Game Catcher I believe it, too, was a very misunderstood product. The OUYA was an Android-based game system released in 2013 that strived to bring indie games and Android games to a proper game console. The console was unusually small, was digital-only and retailed for only $99. The concept behind this console was amazing -- it would be a gateway for independent game developers to enter the video game industry by making it very easy to develop games for the OUYA. Every console sold was also a dev kit that anybody could utilize for creating games for the platform. You had to go through a submission process with your game, and OUYA representatives would review your games for content, copyright infringement, bugs, and other things. If your game proved to be acceptable, it would be put up onto the OUYA store where people could download it. This is how I went about releasing my first video game ever, and I have to say it was a pretty cool experience for me.
However, a number of issues plagued the console. For one, its user interface was extremely buggy and often froze. The system's unusually small design made it difficult to keep stationary, as bulkier HDMI cables would weigh the system down and make it tilt backwards or even fall off shelves and entertainment units. The controller was very flawed as well, and buttons would often stick.
Another thing that really hurt the console was its outlandish YouTube commercial, which featured a person literally puking bones and organs out of his body, because he bought the latest sequel of Call of Duty that was exactly like the last game. The commercial itself was very negatively received. Like with Game Catcher, I feel like everyone misunderstood the commercial and the console itself as a whole. The commercial, for one, was brilliant in my opinion. It not only was creative and unique because it was so weird, but it also spoke the honest-to-God truth abou many AAA video games. I think many people were probably offended by this commercial because it was not only pretty grotesque in nature, but it also was outright bashing their favorite game series. I also think people just didn't understand the philosophy behind it and just took it way too seriously, even though realistically it was all in good fun.
As for the console though, it would've done a lot better if its UI wasn't so buggy, and the controller buttons didn't stick a lot. What also didn't help was that the console's specs were very outdated by the time it was finally released to the public. Pair that with a strange YouTube commercial that just caught every viewer off-guard and a plethora of sub-par games, it's pretty understandable why the Ouya was a failure. Having said that though, If anything though, I think it was a great idea on paper, and it definitely helped influence the big three into paying more attention to indie developers.
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