Mad Catz M.O.J.O. Is a Pricey Game Console for Android Nerds

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Mad Catz

Okay, let’s be honest, hardly anyone’s going to spend $250 for a game console that runs Android — not when the same money could get you a PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360.┬áBut you’ve got to respect Mad Catz for trying with the M.O.J.O.

The Android-based box goes on sale this December for $250, and is up for pre-orders now.

The M.O.J.O. is trying to be a deluxe version of the Android game console. Basically, it has the guts of a high-end smartphone, with an Nvidia Tegra 4 processor, 2 GB of RAM, and 16 GB of storage. Around back, the M.O.J.O. has HDMI output, two USB inputs, Ethernet and a micro-SD card slot. An included controller has a full set of thumbsticks, buttons and triggers, plus a “travel clip” that you can use with a smartphone, turning it into a portable gaming device (similar to the Moga Pro).

While other Android-based microconsoles like Ouya and GameStick have created their own app stores and interfaces, the M.O.J.O. runs straight up Android 4.2. While it won’t exactly be a slick, TV-friendly interface, it does allow you to load up your existing game collection from the Google Play Store, without having to re-purchase anything. And we’ll assume that if you’re dropping $250 on an Android gaming box, you won’t be easily frustrated if the experience isn’t seamless . (The controller also includes a “mouse mode” for dealing with games that haven’t been fully-optimized for the controller.)

What would you actually play on this thing? Emulators, simple shooters like Dead Trigger, platformers like Sonic the Hedgehog 4 and console re-releases like Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Expendable: Rearmed. I imagine it could be fun for quick, snack-like gaming, but that price tag makes it a tough sell.