Razer pledges to make good on the $600k Ouya owed indie devs

Indie developers who were part of Ouya’s Free the Games program will not be left out of pocket following the company’s acquisition by Razor.

That’s according to CEO Min Liang-Tan, who has told Polygon that resolving the issue was made a priority at the company the moment it was unearthed.

"We only acquired the team, the platform and the assets of Ouya. We didn’t look at the debts because that’s not how the deal was structured for us," he said. "What we want to do is make sure we support indie developers. Razer will be backing the new Ouya publishing arm. So we are going to try and make good on this fund and give these developers an option."

Of the 27 developers who signed up to Free the Games around a quarter received all of the money promised. A further quarter received some of the cash but half not yet seen a penny – in most instances because the developers have yet to hit the required milestones. When the remaining debt is paid up it will represent a $1m outlay for Ouya/Razer.

Razer’s new terms for developers still attached to a Free the Games contract will free them of their exclusivity commitments. Once a game is published, however, the money handed over needs to be used to give away copies of a given title via Razer’s Cortex storefront.

Studios will be free, however, to start selling on other platforms whenever they wish.

"The financial terms remain largely the same," he added. "This was a marketing campaign for Ouya to bring games to the Ouya platform exclusively. We don’t want exclusives for any platform. What we will ask for is that whatever sums we invest in a game, we would like that same amount to be given away on Cortex.

"For ourselves at Razer, we’ve always done stuff for our fans. This is purely being done out of goodwill. I think this is going to be great for the developers. I think they’re going to be able to get the games done and gamers will get access to games for free. Then those games will spread through word of mouth.

"We’re falling back to our basic principles, that Razer is for gamers, by gamers. When we heard of the plight of some of the indie devs we wanted to make sure we were in a position to help them."

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