In terms of difficulty, securing a publishing deal as a start-up video games developer is as tricky as finding a suitable use for the Millennium Dome. And if what you're trying to get published isn't part of an existing franchise or licensed to a major brand, then you may as well step into a Canadian grizzly bear sanctuary wearing a blazer lined with the freshest Scottish salmon. You'd have a better chance of winning over the bear than attempting to sell an original game idea within a publisher's meeting room (and you won't get torn to pieces as much – grizzlies aren't a match for marketing men).
So it's tough to be lost in the gaming space without a publisher – but Tiki Games isn't afraid of boldly going where few have gone before. Undeterred by the cold darkness of uncertainty it faces, the developer has been working on Galaxy's End, an original sci-fi realtime strategy concept designed specifically for PSP. This means that the convoluted control system usually associated with such titles has been streamlined to compensate for the fact that the last time we looked, the PSP didn't come with a slide-out keyboard.
We don't know how well this works in practice (Tiki is reporting the feedback it's had so far in this regard has been encouraging) but judging from the work-in-progress screenshots and accompanying trailer (click 'Watch It!'), all of the staple elements of an RTS appear solidly in place.
Galaxy's End currently seems promising, even if unlikely to prove revolutionary. That's by no means a criticism – the PSP could certainly do with an RTS, if only to broaden its horizons, and in the absence of competition there's surely no need to re-invent the warp drive?
Of course, without a publisher on board we'll never know, so let's hope one keeps its marketing department at bay long enough to give Galaxy's End the chance it seemingly deserves.