Published on October 8th, 2013 | by David Guild7
MadCatz’s M.O.J.O To Cost £219.99
Today MadCatz announced the price for their up and coming Android Micro-Console and it’s pretty shocking. They have priced the M.O.J.O at £219.99 for their wee piece of kit, this will include the Micro-Console itself which is running Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean), HDMI cable, AC Adapter and the C.T.L.R Mobile Gamepad, with USB Nano Dongle, travel clip and some AAA batteries.
The system hardware is quite impressive for the size, check out the specs below:
- NVIDIA Tegra 4 clocking in at 1.6GHz
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB Internal Storage
- Wi-Fi b/g/n Support
- USB 3.0/2.0 Ports
- 100Mbit Ethernet
- MicroSD Flash Slot
- HDMI Out
- 3.5mm Jack for headphones
Like I said, the hardware and external ports are quite impressive, the MicroSD support will be great for more games in the future, can boast another 128GB of space for games or media. The usual network support will get on any network for quite a while and the USB 3.0 support isn’t all that needed in my opinion yet but guess it’s best to keep up with the times. Like I say impressive specs, but is it really needed? It main job is to run Android games, the same games that your mobile phone plays and I can honestly say most of your mobiles don’t have specs like these and can run all the games without a problem. The controller is probably the best part about the M.O.J.O, with being Bluetooth it can connect to phones and use the controller on the move. Love the design also, it looks like a Xbox 360 controller which is a big plus from me.
So really what makes this Micro-Console stand out to the others on and coming to the market? Lets take a look at the completion.
The Ouya is probably one of the more famous Micro-Consoles on the market, its development was funded by Kickstarter which raised $8.5 million, which is huge as it only wanted $950,000. The Ouya got its target in 8 hours and from there it just kept growing and growing. The console specs are not too bad especially with the price tag of £99 or if you don’t mind a pre owned console, head to eBay and grab a deal. My friend was able to get the console plus extra controller preloaded with games all for £70 inc del. The spec’s below:
- NVIDIA Tegra 3 Quad-Core 1.7GHz
- 1GB RAM
- 8GB Internal Storage
- HDMI, USB 2.0, Wi-Fi, MicroUSB, Ethernet
The controller sadly is pretty poor and feels very cheap, had a touch pad in the centre. But you can you the PS3, Xbox 360 and Wii controller through the console with some help from apps. While the Ouya uses a custom launcher on Android 4.1 this doesn’t stop you using some guides from the internet to add more games and apps from existing app stores like Amazon App Market or Google Play. It can pretty much do what the M.O.J.O can do, without the high price tag.
If ya think the Ouya is too big for you, why not try out PlayJam’s GameStick, its slated to launch later this month for £79.99. It started life seemly to the Ouya with it being a Kickstarter project and raised $600,000. The console is basically a dongle, I’m unsure on the specs but I suspect it be near enough like the Ouya just on a more micro scale. One of the better ideas to the GameStick is the dock that you can buy later on which charge the controllers, 3 USB ports, an SD card reader for more storage and HDMI. The dock main purpose is to allow more input devices connect to the GameStick, like keyboard, mouse, microphones and webcams.
The software will also be like the M.O.J.O and Ouya by using Android and will mostly likely have a Launcher over the top. So another system which can run Android games with a much better price tag.
Last but not least is hardware developer, NVIDIA with their Micro-Console called NVIDIA Shield. The Shield doesn’t have a box where the console should be, the hardware is all installed on the joypad which looks like a Xbox 360 controller and has a flip-up 5” screen with a resolution of 1280×720. The Shield runs Android 4.2.1 and the hardware is pretty impressive:
- NVIDIA Tegra 4 Quad-Core 1.9GHz
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB Internal Storage
- MicroSD Support, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, Micro HDMI, MicroUSB, 3.5mm Jack
So the Shield is pretty much the same system as the M.O.J.O but with 100MHz more in the CPU department but with Android games, who will notice? So you can play your games on either the 5” flip screen which is actually a beautiful looking screen or on the big TV at home but the Shield doesn’t stop there. If your desktop PC is equipped with an NVIDIA GTX 650 or higher video card you will be able to stream games from your PC to the Shield, plus in the future it will also support cloud gaming. I played with the Shield at Eurogamer and while the joypad was heavy to use over a period of time, but I played 2K Games, The Bureau and it was excellent. The game didn’t skip a beat and the quality was great.
I did ask the folk at Eurogamer what was the price range of the NVIDIA Shield but sadly they didn’t have an idea of UK release date or price but on Newegg.com, you can pre order the system for $299.99 which translates in today’s market of £186. Which is still cheaper than MadCatz M.O.J.O, granted the price will be different in the UK and maybe shoot up to the £200 but that is still cheaper.
So what does this all mean? It means that hardware developers have looked in to the increase number of sales in mobile gaming too much. The figures are there to show that mobile gaming is very popular and a lot of console developers who have fallen have made its way to mobile gaming, most famously founder of Lionhead Studio and creator of the Fable series, Peter Molyneux said he was “leaving” Lionhead and Microsoft to join former Lionhead CTO Tim Rance at 22Cans which are created Curiosity and now working on Godus, a god sim game for computers and handhelds.
The reason mobile games are doing so popular is due to the ease of getting the games, mostly everyone today now own a iOS or Android device and will play a game or two at work, home or travelling. They are addictive due to how portable they are, not because they are great games. They do not translate well to the home screen, this is what laptops and PCs are for.
Another problem is the input to these Android games, most of them use tilt controls or touch screen. The Shield is the only system which has a touch screen and I doubt it is easy to use where its placed. The Ouya and M.O.J.O controllers have either a touch pad or can change an analog stick to be a mouse but this still isn’t a touch screen. The GameStick can have a mouse plugged in to the docking station but again, this isn’t a touch screen or tilt controls. A lot of Android games just don’t work well on a joypad and need to have special attention. Yes developers are now creating their games with joypad support but still have a long way to come.
While I own a Ouya, I don’t own it for the games I can play on the device, well that’s a lie, I love it for emulation and ROMs. Though mainly I brought a Ouya due to its size and multimedia options, I can stream movies and TV to my bedroom, without wasting an Xbox and you don’t need much hardware power for that.
So is the M.O.J.O worth its price tag? Hell no! Especially with the other Micro-Consoles that I have mentioned above that do the same thing with a cheaper price tag. Click on the Micro-Console titles to take you to their official sites, plus if anyone is interested I’ll have some posts on the Ouya up next week with an unboxing and some gameplay, maybe a review of a few of the games. If some how I acquire any of the other devices you can expect reviews and videos on those devices.