Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Gaming For Roku

That's a gaming controller...
It looks like the family room is being invaded sooner than I thought by inexpensive gaming. The camel's nose is under the tent, and in this case the camel is named Roku. Their inexpensive little boxes for streaming Netflix and other video have been a hit for people who don't happen to have a console (Xbox/PS3/Wii) or an Internet-connected TV or a Tivo that includes streaming. Now, Roku is introducing three new versions, starting at $59 and going up to $99, and they've built in a copy of Angry Birds. Naturally, you get a six-axis controller that looks an awful lot like a Wiimote to control your game.

Roku notes that other Angry Birds games, like Angry Birds Rio, will be coming soon. They don't mention whether or not any other games might be made available for the Roku. I don't think these devices include any kind of storage, though, so I don't see where you'd put games. Unless, of course, they were streaming games from OnLive... which is certainly a possibility in the future.

The interesting thing here is just how easy it is to add a good-looking game to a very inexpensive box. When you think about how powerful an Apple TV with an A5 in it could be... and think about something like Infinity Blade on your TV... and you'll see why console makers should be nervous. Heck, we need not wait for Apple to pull the trigger on its new Apple TV with App Store (though I think they would have a real winner introducing that for the holidays this year). Perhaps Amazon will step in... we have heard rumors about Amazon Android tablets in the works, and they are working on a social game of their own. Why couldn't Amazon create an Amazon TV box for $99, that streams Amazon programming and has their Android market built in? Hey, if Apple can't get its act together, maybe Amazon can step in and grab the market share.

If you think the traditional console market has been in turmoil the last few years, just wait until this hits... it'll be  a nuclear blast. Oh, that probably means zombies...

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