Tapulous Loses Their Development Team; CEO Bart Decrem Attempting To Revamp A New One

Posted Sep 24, 2008

Tapulous builds games for the Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone and the Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android.  The company is best known for creating applications: Tap Tap Revenge, Twinkle (a Twitter app), and Collage (photo sharing).  After the company raised $1.8 million in funding and the new CEO Bart Decrem stepped in, several of the key employees have left.

The four key employees that left include:
– Sean Heber, the company’s first employee 
– Tristan O?Tierney, a senior engineer and
– Louie Mantia, designer
– Mike Lee, Co-founder and Chief Architect

When Tapulous started, the company wanted to keep their applications fun with a sleek interface.  But Decrem is going for more of a quantity over quality approach.  With most of Tapulous’ employees gone, Decrem plans on making the Tapulous game studio go from indie to an application assembly line.  The problem with doing so is risky because owners of Apple products prefer applications to be high-quality and aesthetic.

It’s unfortunate to see this happening after seeing the success of the original Tap Tap. TechCrunch noticed that Tap Tap is featured on a screen shot on Apple.com with the heading: “iPod touch. The funnest iPod ever.” Chris Ainsworth even made a video of his pet pigeon attempting to play Tap Tap.

Decrem will have to learn this the hard way in order to find out what Apple users like.  He may release an application and it may or may not do well.  If it doesn’t do well, then he will face a lot of pressure from the VCs that funded the company based on the quality of Tap Tap.  Tapulous is funded by Andy Bechtolsheim, Marc Benioff, Jeff Clavier, Katrina Garnett, and Rajeev Motwani.