Quoted from snaroff:
The only people that know the real deal are the people closest to the project and negotiation. From where we sit, it's impossible to "blame" the licensee. If SR games are commonly criticized for less-than-great art, he is either getting the bad luck of the draw OR it's not something he chooses to focus on (or have an eye for). The game designers @ Stern seem to have ultimate responsibility for what is produced.
I assume its allot like Led Zeppelin...
SR's focus is on designing the best game he can from a playability standpoint therefore perhaps the artwork isnt high in the list of priorities.
Same reason Led Zeppelin album art kinda sucks in most cases... I am sure Jimmy Page cared 100% about the music inside not the packaging and probably gave ten minutes thought to the art.
They did release an album in a paperbag at one point.
For people that arent visual artists they work from another angle and the packaging and trappings and other marketing sort of bullshit is an afterthought allot of times.
Check out frank zappa lyrics and song names... he could have cared less what you call it.