The husband and wife team of Keith Shepherd and Natalia Luckyanova make up Imangi Studios, the iPhone developer behind line-drawing hit Harbor Master. We've been following the duo for a while now, and we last talked to them at WWDC, when they were pretty far along in development with a game called Max Adventure, a dual-stick shooter with a plucky kid with a laser gun for a hero.
Max Adventure was released last December (and has since been updated), and Imangi tells me at GDC that the launch went well -- mostly. "It was the best launch we've had on our own," says Shepherd, adding that both the ratings and sales numbers were great after the game released in mid-December. "But then...," says Luckyanova, trailing off. Then, it turns out, came the EA sale, filling the App Store charts with 99-cent sales of premium EA titles, and Imangi's carefully crafted Max Adventure got "crushed" in the Christmas rush.
But the best part of the story is what happened next: a little while after Imangi had a blue Christmas, EA called them. The company liked Imangi's games and wanted to talk about a possible publishing deal.