The makers of indie hit AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!! - A Reckless Disregard for Gravity think that gamers' disdain for marketing is unwarranted.
To many gamers (and indie developers), "marketing" might as well be a four-letter word. Marketing, as many see it, is evil; it's part of the corporate publisher machine that exists to squeeze the creativity out of developers and dollars out of gamers. Why spend so much on marketing, huh? It's all a bunch of lies anyway!
Speaking with Gamasutra, though, Dejobaan Games - an indie success story in its own right - said that marketing shouldn't be always viewed as something bad.
"Say 'marketing' to many people, and it's an evil, filthy thing that you use to force people to buy something they don't need," wrote Dejobaan's Ichiro Lambe, Dan Brainerd, and Leo Jaitley. "But to us, it starts with designing an experience that makes people so passionate about that they actually pick up the game and tell all their friends."
"Things like 'over 80 levels' or '15 music tracks' aren't as noteworthy as 'deploy obscene gesture for points' is," said the team, referencing Reckless Disregard's ability for players to flip off protesters as they skydive past them - and how it made for great word of mouth publicity.
In other words, marketing is fine, but it has to be part of the design going in - a creative idea should be marketed.
"Marketing is an integral part of game design, rather than a spare afterthought."