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Ouya not changing Free the Games Fund: 'This response surprised us'


Ouya isn't suspending or altering Free the Games Fund, despite allegations of fraud in some of its related Kickstarter projects, founder Julie Uhrman says.

"Recently, the intention behind our Free the Games Fund – to provide additional funding to crowdfunded games bound for Ouya and enable developers to make more of them – seems to have been lost," Uhrman says. "This response surprised us – we thought this was going to be great – how could it not be?"

Free the Games Fund offers a pool of $1 million in matching funds to Ouya-exclusive Kickstarter projects. It's an "open" way to get games off the ground, Uhrman says – but many bystanders noticed that it's a little too open. One Free the Games Fund campaign, Elementary, My Dear Holmes, was suspended on Kickstarter following allegations that the pledges were fake.

"In launching this campaign, we've been called everything from naive and foolish to crazy and idealistic," Uhrman says. "This is not the first time we've been called any of that. Maybe we're naive ... and yes we're definitely idealistic. It's gotten us this far. We believe (still) that great games from great developers can be discovered this way – by you."

On Twitter, Uhrman is more concise: "No we are not changing the Free The Games Fund. We are sticking with it."

Gridiron Thunder, another Free the Games Fund title under suspicion from fans, was successfully funded with $171,009 on September 8. An Ouya representative told us that the project met all guidelines and would receive the match.

There are now nine games live on Kickstarter involved in Free the Games Fund and Uhrman encourages people to support them. Elementary, My Dear Holmes, doesn't make her list, of course.

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