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I looked up the company on pocket tactics, the site I menioned after I posted this. Infact they have had numerous mentions there as well, but no real detailed coverage, no real follow up. I don't think iPad games journalists are failing to cover companies like this - I think these kinds of companies are so anti-marketing in the presentation and design of their games that they fail to stand out or get noticed even by people like me who might have been looking for this kind of experience.

A contrasting company would be someone like inkle's 80 days - that's was an odd iPad game that was hard to sell just on screenshots, but it was marketed brilliantly and had a vision throughout the product that was reflected in taht and the buzz around it was and is huge because of that

You are saying "anti-marketing" but what this really means is that they are putting less investment into production values than you prefer.

The whole point is that it is doubtful that they will stay solvent if they put more money into production values on that platform.

Nice graphics are very expensive. (They are more expensive than any other aspect of game development, in fact). If it seems unlikely that enough people will buy their game given that type of investment, then it may be a good choice to stay away from that.

On top of which, maybe they just don't want to spend all their time doing graphics. Maybe they want to work on the story / world / etc.

> Nice graphics are very expensive.

Alarmingly true. Good 2D graphics for a game like Avernum could easily scale into the tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of dollars.

(Source: my spreadsheets. :-/ )

I would consider production values part of marketing (a vital part) - they are competing only on PC without the marketing/production values being an issue - iPad is not a platform they can do that with. I don'et think they are necessarily wrong to step away from th iPad from a business perspective, just saying very different audience customer retention strategy and maybe not suited to them.

No, he's saying "anti-marketing" to mean just that: marketing.

It doesn't matter how much work you want to put into your graphics, story, world, or whatever if no one knows that your game exists.

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