Amazon shows off FireTV and tablet-exclusive games, definitely means business

Amazon shows off FireTV and tablet-exclusive games, definitely means business
Amazon Game Studios has released a reel of footage from upcoming games that will be exclusive to its Kindle Fire tablets and new FireTV set-top box. We are pleasantly surprised, as all of them look fantastic (although not particularly original) and serve to justify Amazon's on-going game developer hiring spree. 

If these titles play as good as they look, it could very well turn out that the first de-facto competitor to the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One will be a plain black box full of cutting-edge smartphone innards. Not that it will be able to run titles of the same graphical fidelity and scale, but if it sells well, and the games are good, Sony and MS will feel the heat from Amazon. After all, this was the recipe for the Wii U's smashing initial success - quality casual gaming. But, instead of having motion controls, the FireTV relies on the most sought after entertainment services to enlarge its customer value. 

Speaking of FireTV games, publisher Gameloft announced it will offer three of its hit titles optimized for the platform – these would be Despicable Me: Minion Rush, Asphalt 8: Airborne, and Modern Combat 4. The games will benefit from improved graphics and fitting control schemes.

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8 Comments

1. fanboy1974

Posts: 1345; Member since: Nov 12, 2011

My biggest issue with current consoles such as x1 and ps4 is the price of new games. If Amazon can bang out full titles for around $5 and lower it will become a serious threat. My only concern is in app purchases. I always thought Google would make a android based console which in my opinion would have been better. They could have brought chrome OS to the masses with gaming capabilities and chromecast like features. One box could threaten so many competitors at the same time. Not sure if Amazon can do it.

2. luis.d

Posts: 354; Member since: Dec 04, 2013

Amazon said that it will price its titles very aggressively, but these games are tiny in terms of scale and development resources when compared to something like Killzone or Watch_Dogs. That's one of the reasons triple-A games cost as much, while mobile titles sell for pennies in comparison. I doubt that Amazon will be in pursuit of core-gamers when it already has a wide user-base of casual users hooked up to its platform. But, at the very least, the company is showing effort, instead of churning out Candy Crush Saga clones and the like. Besides, appetite comes with eating, and if the FireTV succeeds as a games platform, maybe Amazon will consider an actual console. Times are interesting!

3. renz4

Posts: 319; Member since: Aug 10, 2013

yep the game are cheap with this android micro console but can they compete with triple A games in term of content and graphic quality?

4. luis.d

Posts: 354; Member since: Dec 04, 2013

They will, eventually, but triple-A games with big budgets and expensive price tags aren't fit for the current mobile market. First, they will never return a profit, or break even, unless the majority of mobile gamers become accustomed to paying $60 for games. In-app purchases are a clever way to circumvent this, but put yourself in the shoes of a game designer - can you tell a story like that of "The Last Of Us" if the player has to constantly pay to advance forward and such? In addition, triple-A games have large, Blu-Ray like data footprints, which makes digital distribution problematic. And finally, you have rampant piracy on Android, Google and Apple taking their cut of the sales, and a bunch of other issues. Still, the kind of games Amazon is developing can attract both casual and core gamers, I think, and if enough people buy them, they will be profitable, too. I like where Amazon is going with this.

6. Reluctant_Human

Posts: 912; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

Seems to me this will be the reason why most people will turn to getting the steam box when that's available, at least for hardcore gamers. Plus the steam box will have the added benefit of cross compatibility with older games. Something Sony and Microsoft are failing on hard. In terms of pure gaming Steam has the best deals and they will give you the option of playing on the big screen or pc. Which is something you normally have to pay for twice to do.

8. renz4

Posts: 319; Member since: Aug 10, 2013

what about graphic quality?

5. Augustine

Posts: 1043; Member since: Sep 28, 2013

Roku, a small company with little clout, allowed thousands of people to like me to cut the cable TV, save hundreds of dollars and still have access to quality entertainment. Amazon should attract more mainstream content providers, accelerating the growth of cable-cutters. With young adults failing to pick up this habit from their parents, the cable operators, better known for their bastardry, are sweating profusely under their suits.

7. Reluctant_Human

Posts: 912; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

They wouldn't have to if they changed their business models slightly. The problem is they deal with the networks that are set in their ways. Plus, I don't see VIACOM or any of those other media companies embracing a new way of business anytime soon. Until then lawsuits, price gauging and crappy customer service will still be the way of life for most.

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