My stats: I only have a little over 21K downloads, and the non-ad version has only made a few bucks. Ad revenue equates to a couple movie tickets every so often I guess. Wrote it in Monkey-X for cross-platform functionality, but only ever put it on Android for some reason.
I've done no marketing. Never been featured. My dad likes it. I'm 35. I get sadder with every period I type.
EDIT: I wouldn't normally post self-promotion type stuff on HN, but I think it applies here because I did write a similar game, coded it by hand, put in the time, made my own silly graphics, but my stats represent the other 99% of us game devs that rarely get featured and remain off the radar. Some call our apps pollution in the app store, but those of us who legitimately write them are proud of them none-the-less, even if they make no money, though we'd honestly like them to.
Also, last I looked at the numbers, iOS users pay more money than Android one. (sigh)
I'll check your game out next time I'm looking for an android game!
Looking at yours on the Play Store, some things stand out to my untrained eye:
- Drop shadows on the title.
- The trees don't look clean (and I have no idea how to dig into that).
- The end scene fonts don't look sharp - they look kind of comic sans.
- The configuration is accessed via buttons, instead of the standard Android styling of the "..." button.
- The icon's person graphics are both too detailed and not detailed enough - they are in an uncanny valley of "eh".
- There's no cohesion of colors: there are multiple shades of green; multiple colors of buttons; multiple shades of blue. Multiple shades is fine, but for UI elements, they are like different colored trim on a house for the same things - window sills.
If you have a friend who is into graphic design, have them write you a critique.
It also turns me off, hard, when apps have exclamation points in the title or the "Free" word. It signifies cheapness for some reason.
A good exercise would be to download/play the top 100 games on the app stores and write a sentence about each one articulating why you think it's a popular/good game. Over time you'll improve your sense of taste for good design.
I downloaded your app. The best feedback I can give is that it's too difficult to get through the gates with tilt controls. It doesn't give me the peaceful sense of skiing down the slopes (that the iOS game above claims to provide).
There is a huge element of luck to it, but the top indie games all have a great sense of graphics design and UX design that make them a joy to play. Users are verrry picky, and may skip downloading your app even if the icon doesn't meet their bar of quality.
My dream is to be able to design something as nice as Monument Valley.
Over the last year, I stopped releasing games. I used to just keep putting them out, thinking they were polished enough, because of all this talk about "just launch" and game jams like #1gam seem to encourage the "just make games" mentality.
However, while all that is great fun, I've changed my view. I'm now prototyping a lot, and will only work more on a game I fall in love with. At the moment, that's a point and click adventure game and enjine.
I actually like this Snowboarding game, and am proud of it because I think it's fun, but I'm with you.... It's time to shoot for the moon, set the bar really high and make a game that's truly special.
 https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/lina-a-game-about-lines/id89... - A big update is coming soon too!
This app is incompatible with all of your devices.
That's five different android devices.
(edit: added sentence)
Although I wrote it 5 years ago, no clue if it works on modern phones...
 - https://joeblau.com/orb/
Is there a process completely separate from initial approval that goes through every new app, or does it just come down to piquing the interest of someone in the approval process?
I'm not trying to take anything away from this game, or its developers, but this sort of success in the first week from a developer with only one other app in the app store seems akin to hitting the lottery.
The only method that I'm aware of that Apple gives for promotion is to contact them at email@example.com. I've never gotten a reply from them, not sure if anyone else has, but that's the official address.
Another method that seems effective is networking with important people at Apple. I know of at least two instances of apps being featured based off of knowing the right people at Apple, but I'm not sure the best way to find those people or to get their attention.
I made a port (rather than a remake, like yours, with fancy new graphics ;) for the web which works on mobile: https://basicallydan.github.io/skifree.js. It has the monster and snowboarders.
Yours is much prettier though :D Nice work and well done on the success!
BTW I got a "Welcome back (some name)" message on the first play.
Android users often harp about apps that are released first for iOS, but it's much easier to QA on a fairly limited number of devices, launch the app and start proving your idea/generating revenue on iOS first. At least in my experience, releasing a cross-platform app for both operating systems at the same time means either delaying iOS to QA Android properly, or releasing a half-baked Android version that gets 25 1-star reviews right out of the gate because of a weird edge case bug with some device you didn't test on.