Angoel has gone off CheapAss games somewhat. At first, I thought the CheapAss philosophy was a marvelous idea, and couldn't see why noone else hadn't thought of this in order to bring games to the masses. I bought some CheapAss games, which got played a bit. And then didn't get played thereafter, because frankly most of them were naff, one joke games.
Some of them weren't, it must be said, /StarbaseJeff, /Brawl? and /SaveDoctorLucky being prime examples. However, even with these, it was a lot harder to persuade people to play with a few shoddy pieces of cardboard inexpertly selotaped together and an assortment of mismatched counters, than a flash game with proper pieces in a big box. Especially when the 'flash' games were as good if not better than the CheapAss games.
I suppose part of my current attitude is because of the size of my games collection. I took about a third of my games along for a week's holiday with friends, during which we played about half of the ones I'd taken. Basic conclusion - I have a lot of games - more than I end up having time to play. Which means that any games I go on to buy are going to have to be actively better than the ones I currently have availiable, or they'll just end up taking space in my cupboard.
CheapAss style games are fine for HardcoreGamers. However, decent artwork and construction rank up there with other niceties like having a box where each component has a place (how often do you end up sorting those two decks of cards, or spending 5 minutes separating the white and red counters?); a coherent set of rules and probably about the same level as having a theme IMHO. Obviously, when faced with a CheapAss game and a non-CheapAss game of the same quality, people will pick the one with pretty pictures. -- ColinT